Where are you in Fantasyland? May 2012
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Orsinia, as in Orsinian Tales by Ursula Le Guin. Though this is more an imaginary country than a fantastical country (not much magic or heroics going on here so far), I'm still loving this secondary world that she has created.
By the way, the name of the mythical state Orciny that China Mieville hints at in The City & the City may have been inspired by Le Guin's Orsinia, though the two appear to be very different. The only thing they have in common is that they both appear to be located somewhere in Eastern Europe.
Had a quick sortie into Canada with The Girls (Lori Larson) then off back to Westeros , well work does get in the way of reading!!!
I'm in the fortress of Dragonstone, at the beginning of A Clash of Kings.
I am currently travelling the world with The Night Circus. I have to say I have heard nothing but good things about this book and was really looking foreward to reading it, but so far it's not grabbed me. A lovely concept but not much in the way of plot or characterisation. Maybe it will pick up soon, I hope so.
I'm hanging out with Durzo and Kylar in the Warrens of Cenaria, figuring out how to navigate the political minefield that is Midcyru (The Way of Shadows).
I just finished up with Carter and Sadie in The Serpent's Shadow and I'm really disappointed in the trilogy. Overall, I'll give it 3***, which isn't really bad, but it's nowhere comparable to Camp Halfblood. In fairness to Riordan, this may partly be my own lesser familiarity with Egyptian mythology (compared to Graeco-Roman), but I think that's probably going to be true of most readers, which complicates the large assemblage of characters that he throws in. Another problem, I think, is the greater reliance on divinities in this series (though the lesser deities Bes and Bast are particularly attractive), as opposed to the much wider range of child/halfblood characters in his other series. Also, The Kane Chronicles tends to be wa-a-a-ay to cutesy for my own taste, though Camp Halfblood has also started toward a little too much cutesiness in its most recent Roman book.
Still, kids should like this series, and it's a good one for introducing Egyptian mythology in a classroom. Due to most people's lesser familiarity with Egyptian mythology, though, The Kane Chronicles may particularly benefit from The Kane Chronicles Survival Guide.
This is really just a minor SPOILER, but the conclusion of The Serpent's Shadow hints that the world of The Kane Chronicles may very soon be intersecting that of Camp Halfblood.
In a strange version of Wonderland in Alice on the Shelf with a homicidal Cheshire cat.
22>> In a strange version of Wonderland in Alice on the Shelf with a homicidal Cheshire cat.
Me too. I just downloaded it to my Kindle.
Now reading The Sword of the Lady by S. M. Stirling. Although the series started out as SF it becomes more-and-more heroic Fantasy with each book...
I just finished Alice on the Shelf too, a fairly quick read on my Kindle. It was also fairly good most of the way through it, but I thought the ending (saying no more to avoid SPOILER) was rather conventional, a let-down.
CurrerBell, could not agree more. The ending felt.....self-indulgent instead of for the reader.
@32: I'm still at book no. 2, but I believe this has to feel like falling into a deep hole - I fear this moment and yearn for it at the same time ;)
36>> I fell in love with Cherie Priest with her "Eden Moore" trilogy. I got Four and Twenty Blackbirds as a Kindle freebie very early on in my K1 days, and that just proves how valuable freebies can be to authors and publishers because I got hooked right away. There's a lot of her other books that I haven't read, though, because I'm not terribly fond of steampunk, but in addition to "Eden Moore" I have read both of her Cheshire Red books and love them both. The idea of a vampire who's a master thief but who has obsessive compulsive disorder is brilliant. I'm just hoping we'll get a third installment soon.
I'm starting to spend some time in Ferryport with Sabrina and Daphne, just starting Book 2, The Unusual Suspects. I'm a latecomer to the series.
Finished Last Argument of Kings and heartily do NOT approve of the ending. There are ways to do "bleak" without spitting all over the time the reader spent caring about... PRETTY MUCH EVERYTHING in the previous books.
Started up on Dragon in Chains by Daniel Fox/Chaz Brenchley. Still getting the lay of the land on this one. Not sure whereabouts I am. :)
38> I eventually quit reading that series because it seemed like the author was never going to end it. Apparently, she's announced that the next book will be the last one, so maybe you won't have that issue.
40> Actually, it looks like Book 9, The Council of Mirrors, which has just been published, is in fact the last one. (There's also one of those supplemental books, A Very Grimm Guide.) But that's why I stayed away from the series altogether, because it looked like it was going to be one of these things that would just dither on and on never-endingly, and I thought it was some kind of Nancy Drew-ish mystery series anyway (and I don't particularly care that much for mysteries). It was when I noticed Book 9 while browsing a B&N that I saw the series really was coming to a conclusion and that there was more fantasy than mystery to it. So I'm practically at the beginning right now, and I'll read them all straight on through.
41> That was the next book I was referring to, I just wasn't aware that it had been published. If you think the series is worth it when it has an ending let me know and I'll give it another try.
fif, if you liked the Games of Thrones series, try Brent Weeks' The Night Angel trilogy. Few Fantasies have drawn me in the way these do.
46, thanks for that. Was going to reread jrrt again, but will look Weeks out. In Nagasaki with Jacob de Zoet.does that count as fantasy??
I'm new to Library Thing and I just want to say "Hello" to everyone here. I'm in between reading a slew of books at the moment but I am pondering on getting Book 4 of Christopher Paolini's Inheritence Quadrology. Has anybody here read it? I read book 1 and 2 and felt that half of 2 could have been cut out and I haven't read another of his books since.
I'm also a fantasy author and I'm working on book 2 of my own fantasy trilogy.
43>> I just finished Book 9, The Council of Mirrors, and I have mixed feelings about The Sisters Grimm but strongly urge you to consider giving the entire series a second try. My mixed feelings are, I give the overall series probably 4**** for personal reading but a complete thumbs-down for classroom use.
Here's my take on it.
First of all, I never read any of these books as they were coming out. I had this mistaken notion that the series was "Nancy Drew meets Lemony Snicket" and (in all respect to her fans) I just don't care for Nancy Drew, but then I don't that much care for mysteries in general. And as to Lemony Snicket, I found the whole thing very tiresome until the last couple of installments when things really started wrapping up to a very good conclusion.
Now, as to The Sisters Grimm for personal reading enjoyment, I give the series overall 4****. I give the first seven books all 5*****, the eighth book 3***, and the final book three-and-a-half***. The first seven books are out of this world, especially for the relationship between the two semi-orphaned sisters, the older Sabrina and the younger Daphne. There's an interesting reversal here, with the older Sabrina sincerely looking out for her kid sister but with an often domineering stance and chip-on-the-shoulder attitude that sometimes makes Daphne react by calling Sabrina a "jerkazoid." The younger Daphne, in contrast, is the sweet, good-natured sister with the cheerful outlook and with a maturity that, for their relative ages, is a lot greater than Sabrina's. The relationship between the two sisters continues to develop in interesting ways throughout the series, further complicated by the 4000-year-old fairy Puck who's got the body and maturity of an eleven-year-old, just like Sabrina.
There are a lot of interesting twists throughout the first seven books, leading up to a discovery of who the real "villain" is, regarding which I'll say no more to avoid SPOILER and just assure you that the author really plays fair with clues leading up to the ultimate disclosure.
Now, as to the eighth volume, I give it 3*** (and maybe a bit generously). It's really way too hurried-up, an out-of-breath jump through a whole variety of fairy tales. I can't say more to avoid SPOILER, but although there are certain interesting reversals the volume overall is just too frantic.
As to the ninth and concluding volume, I'll give it three-and-a-half***, maybe even close to 4****. The pace is still a little too frantic, like the author is trying to wrap everything up in a hurry, and the conclusion is a little too saccharine for my own personal taste, but that's really a matter of taste. The ending has in no way the bittersweet taste of The Amber Spyglass, but considering that "His Dark Materials" is my personally favorite of all fantasy works, it's really not fair for me to compare the two.
I really do think, pwaites, that for personal reading, that you ought to give this series another try.
So why do I give it a thumbs-down for classroom use? It's just wa-a-a-ay too Euro-centric. The standard of beauty, for example, is Snow White's porcelain skin. This is the kind of series that's going to go over like a lead balloon with children of color and in a racially mixed class could also really prove seriously disruptive. There are definitely ways that Michael Buckley could have made this a genuinely multicultural work, as Rick Riordan has very successfully done with Percy Jackson and even more so with The Kane Chronicles. In fact, the only instance I can remember of a dark-skinned character in the entire Sisters Grimm series is (I think) a very minor Mother Goose character who sometimes changes into a goose with black feathers. Children of color are going to find this patently offense for classroom use.
A very good series for personal reading at 4**** (and possibly higher if the last two books, especially book 8, weren't so hurried).
A complete disaster for classroom use.
Have just been in frontier Western North American, with Nadya in the book by Pat Murphy. Enjoyed her book Falling Woman years back, but somehow missed this one until it showed up in one of my used-bookstore ramblings.
A different take on the werewolf legend, more concerned with being different, wildness, and how the larger society often persecutes both. The title character seemed a bit flat at times, but the overall vision, the story, and the ideas are alive and compelling.
Finished Dragon in Chains (enjoyed it), and am currently indulging in a visit to Prydain.
It's been too long since I spent time with Taran, Eilonwy, Flewdurr and the rest. :)
It's getting complicated in Cenaria in Brent Weeks' The Way of Shadows.
Swapping the Kingslayer for the Kingkiller and A Song of Ice and Fire for The Wise Man's Fear.
Visiting FantasticA via the pages of The neverending story.
Edited to fix embarrassing typo!
Just started Merlin's Booke by Jane Yolen. I got distracted while attempting to clean my room....
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