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Old 12-28-2011, 02:09 AM   #841
Galadriel
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[QUOTE]
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Originally Posted by Galadriel55 View Post
I kept wondering how she can be so blind to not see anything beyond his face. She should have felt something for him - pity, at least. Respect. Understanding. I was waiting for the whole book for her to develop some kind of affection for him - and instead she goes for her Florian.
True. But Sansa is ultimately shallow. Which springs, ironically, from her following rules religiously. She honestly thinks sewing and looking pretty will get her out of sticky situations. Her problem is that she takes everyone's word for it.

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Sansa disappoints me.
As a person, yes. As a character, no. Still, she is one of my least favourites. Nearly at the bottom, in fact.

Quote:
I thought she learned her lesson of judging people by their appearance with her dear prince. It's unfortunate that it spread only as far as Lannisters go. But even so - she's closer to the young brave wounded Lancel Lannister who did her nothing than to the Hound who saved her a bunch of times and opened his soul to her and just did so much more for her.
Always felt bad for Sandor
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Old 12-28-2011, 06:38 AM   #842
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Sansa, however, is the POV character for quite a lot of very interesting chapters, and they are all narrated very well. I often think Martin was using her fondness and awareness of stories to express those chapters in such a clear way. As a character, she does change, and I don't know if you've all got to A Storm Of Swords yet, but I think that's where we start to see her realising she has been used and will carry on being used.

I feel sorry for her. Yes, she made some awful mistakes when she was so young and petulant, but she has been raised as a courtly lady without learning all the skills of cunning and intrigue that other ladies have learnt. And in her own way, Arya is just as naive and has to learn for herself. The same goes for Robb and Jon.
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Old 12-28-2011, 09:51 AM   #843
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Originally Posted by Lalwendë View Post
As a character, she does change, and I don't know if you've all got to A Storm Of Swords yet, but I think that's where we start to see her realising she has been used and will carry on being used.
I just started A Storm of Swords, but I didn't get to Sansa's narration yet. I think she began to realise that in A Clash of Kings, and she did absolutely nothing about it except for cry in her pillow about the big bad Lannisters.

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True. But Sansa is ultimately shallow. Which springs, ironically, from her following rules religiously. She honestly thinks sewing and looking pretty will get her out of sticky situations. Her problem is that she takes everyone's word for it.
I don't think she's shallow. She's just passive. And she lives in her dreams and in the songs that she hears, where every knight is a hero who protects the maiden and every villain is ultimately punished. She expected for it to be this way at King's Landing - everyone is honest and goodwilled and noble and etc. Well, they aren't. I'm looking forward to the moment when she'll discard that helpless damsel-in-distress passivness and start learning. I think she won't be as shallow after that.
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Old 12-28-2011, 10:25 AM   #844
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[QUOTE]
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I don't know if you've all got to A Storm Of Swords yet, but I think that's where we start to see her realising she has been used and will carry on being used.
She does change, but I have doubts as to whether she's really over her gushing romantic stage.

Quote:
I feel sorry for her. Yes, she made some awful mistakes when she was so young and petulant, but she has been raised as a courtly lady without learning all the skills of cunning and intrigue that other ladies have learnt. And in her own way, Arya is just as naive and has to learn for herself. The same goes for Robb and Jon.
My point exactly. I initially felt Arya may have been more mature and more understanding of the world around her, but in a sense she's just as clueless as her sister. IMO she does not yet know how to 'play the game' - she's too blunt and too headstrong. Jon seems to be getting more and more confused as the series goes on. A Dance with Dragons was certainly a shock, regarding Jon.
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Old 12-28-2011, 11:00 AM   #845
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I just started A Storm of Swords, but I didn't get to Sansa's narration yet. I think she began to realise that in A Clash of Kings, and she did absolutely nothing about it except for cry in her pillow about the big bad Lannisters.
I won't spoil it for you then! There's a lot more to come for her and I was really pleased with the chapters based on her POV.

Quote:
I don't think she's shallow. She's just passive. And she lives in her dreams and in the songs that she hears, where every knight is a hero who protects the maiden and every villain is ultimately punished. She expected for it to be this way at King's Landing - everyone is honest and goodwilled and noble and etc. Well, they aren't. I'm looking forward to the moment when she'll discard that helpless damsel-in-distress passivness and start learning. I think she won't be as shallow after that.
I think she is starting to learn, she's got a lot further to go yet though...

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Originally Posted by Galadriel
My point exactly. I initially felt Arya may have been more mature and more understanding of the world around her, but in a sense she's just as clueless as her sister. IMO she does not yet know how to 'play the game' - she's too blunt and too headstrong. Jon seems to be getting more and more confused as the series goes on. A Dance with Dragons was certainly a shock, regarding Jon.
I think they are very similar, despite one sister being very girly and the other a tomboy. They both have a lot to learn and I feel were sheltered to the extent that they were allowed to build up romantic notions of both being a lady and being a warrior. It's quite clever though, as it shows up what an idyllic upbringing they had at Winterfell and at the same time, means both of them have a lot of character development and potential left in them.
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Old 12-28-2011, 11:15 AM   #846
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Talking of naive, Brienne beats all of them. She's a darling, but such a child too!

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Originally Posted by Lal
I think they are very similar, despite one sister being very girly and the other a tomboy. They both have a lot to learn and I feel were sheltered to the extent that they were allowed to build up romantic notions of both being a lady and being a warrior. It's quite clever though, as it shows up what an idyllic upbringing they had at Winterfell and at the same time, means both of them have a lot of character development and potential left in them.
That made me think about what happened to them already. It seems that they both learned to hate, but on the other hand, it seems they've just got their first taste of it. And both of them have to learn how to control it and use it.
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Old 12-28-2011, 12:46 PM   #847
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Pretty much all the reviews I've seen not only rave about the series' brilliance, they lavish praise on the "original" plotting and "deep, complex" characterisation. I mean, what the–?"
I remember hearing she wanted to take some of the most common fantasy cliches and see if she could make anything original of them. I think the Farseer trilogy is good enough a read - it's entertaining, and I was never too bothered by the things Galadriel & Nerwen mentioned. Hobb is good at carrying the plot, however her endings are often bad; too happy or simply waaay too unrealistic. I liked best the Liveship Traders series which is, in my opinion, a lot more interesting than the Six Duchies stuff... but it has also problems, such as dragons. I despise dragons, and hers are particularly awful.

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I actually like Sandor Clegane a lot. He's the most interesting beast in a Beauty and the Beast thing. But I actually like that one for more than being an interesting character. Somehow he's closer to being a Ned than all these "honourable" true knights... The good, white Ned...
The Hound is the best ever. I've liked him since... A Clash of Kings, I think - but then, I never liked A Game of Thrones.

I also like Theon, and I pity him. I remember my thoughts when reading ACoK: "He seemed so nice, and now he's horrible... ah well he'll learn eventually; he'll be likeable again later on if he survives until then."

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I kept wondering how she can be so blind to not see anything beyond his face. She should have felt something for him - pity, at least. Respect. Understanding. I was waiting for the whole book for her to develop some kind of affection for him - and instead she goes for her Florian. Sansa disappoints me. I thought she learned her lesson of judging people by their appearance with her dear prince.
Sansa is not very intelligent. It probably has to do with her upbringing, but it might also be she's a bit slow, or then only naive and immature. Anyway, there's something very endearing about her. I am convinced she'll learn to stand up for herself (and feel something for the Hound) before the end of the series, or die trying.

Originally, Sansa and Dany were my least favourite characters. Now they're my two favourites. They both have grown a lot, and show potential for further growth.

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Jon seems to be getting more and more confused as the series goes on. A Dance with Dragons was certainly a shock, regarding Jon.
My defence of Jon Snow has probably become a bit of a joke by now, but honestly I've never seen him as a pathetic/confused/whiny character. He knows what he wants, and he knows he can get it. He's the kind of person who prefers to do things by himself because that's the only way he can be sure they are done well. He thinks outside the box. The only thing he lacks is a simultaneous interpreter who could explain to others why Jon Snow's reasoning is sound, and that's why he lands into trouble every now and then.

When the series ends, I want a Targaryen on the throne. Not because of the dragons, but because the Targaryens are the coolest family.
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Old 12-28-2011, 01:26 PM   #848
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That made me think about what happened to them already. It seems that they both learned to hate, but on the other hand, it seems they've just got their first taste of it. And both of them have to learn how to control it and use it.
I think that because neither of them have been taught about how to manipulate others, and neither of them were brought up with a knowledge that the world was a harsh place, once they both grow up then they stand the potential to be so much more deadly than anyone like Cersei could even dream about. Their lessons have been hard and learnt out in the world, on their own.

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My defence of Jon Snow has probably become a bit of a joke by now, but honestly I've never seen him as a pathetic/confused/whiny character. He knows what he wants, and he knows he can get it. He's the kind of person who prefers to do things by himself because that's the only way he can be sure they are done well. He thinks outside the box. The only thing he lacks is a simultaneous interpreter who could explain to others why Jon Snow's reasoning is sound, and that's why he lands into trouble every now and then.
I love Jon Snow too. He's anything but 'whiny' and I love how he is always slightly an outsider wherever he goes and whatever he achieves - and doesn't let that stop him.
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Old 12-28-2011, 09:49 PM   #849
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Originally Posted by Agan
My defence of Jon Snow has probably become a bit of a joke by now, but honestly I've never seen him as a pathetic/confused/whiny character. He knows what he wants, and he knows he can get it. He's the kind of person who prefers to do things by himself because that's the only way he can be sure they are done well. He thinks outside the box. The only thing he lacks is a simultaneous interpreter who could explain to others why Jon Snow's reasoning is sound, and that's why he lands into trouble every now and then.
In 2-and-a-bit books there were only 2 narrations from him that I didn't like. One, that I really thought whiny, where his friends barely stop him from making the biggest blunder of his life and running away. The second - when he welcomes Sam into his company. I never liked bullying stories. Middle School force-feeds enough of them. Otherwise, he was not whiny or confused at all. It depends on how you define pathetic, because I think he is pretty wretched once he understood the role that Halfhand prepared for him. But then, he was so collected and even cunning during his talk with the king! He sure keeps his wits with him at all times!

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I think that because neither of them have been taught about how to manipulate others, and neither of them were brought up with a knowledge that the world was a harsh place, once they both grow up then they stand the potential to be so much more deadly than anyone like Cersei could even dream about. Their lessons have been hard and learnt out in the world, on their own.
Also they are likely to be more dangerous because they would appreciate the power of both Winterfell's virtues and southern court intrigue/manipulation, and once they will adjust to the latter, they'll make use of both. Cersei would never understand what it means to respect a man for being fair for justice's sake, because she never understood justice. She would only have half of what they would have.
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Old 12-30-2011, 02:58 PM   #850
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To go back to a previous book reference:

I read the first two books of Patrick Rothfuss' Kingkiller Chronicles this week and enjoyed them tremendously! From the first lines of The Name of the Wind, which become a theme with variations, used as bookends in both books, I was captivated. The author created a very enjoyable main character, whom the reader gets to know at two times, both past and present, and I can hardly wait for the third part of the trilogy to find out what happens. The plot is interesting, the writing is very good, with some fascinating linguistic elements and turns of phrases.

On the other hand, I read the first few pages of Tad Williams' Shadowmarch and am not sure I care enough to continue...

As for my small change on the above-mentioned Song of Ice and Fire, I read them a few months ago. They certainly are page-turners, written as they are from various povs, but the farther they go, the more I get the feeling that the author is losing himself in his world, getting side-tracked with too many characters and locations. I'm not sure we will ever reach the end of the story...
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Old 12-30-2011, 03:54 PM   #851
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I hope he does get it together and bring all the storylines back and finish the series. It's the only fantasy fiction series aimed at adults I've read since I first picked up Lord of the Rings that I could say I've been obsessed with (though I've tried with many others).
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Old 12-31-2011, 05:13 AM   #852
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My defence of Jon Snow has probably become a bit of a joke by now, but honestly I've never seen him as a pathetic/confused/whiny character. He knows what he wants, and he knows he can get it. He's the kind of person who prefers to do things by himself because that's the only way he can be sure they are done well. He thinks outside the box. The only thing he lacks is a simultaneous interpreter who could explain to others why Jon Snow's reasoning is sound, and that's why he lands into trouble every now and then.
I never stated that he was pathetic or whiny. Just confused. I'm not blaming him, since Hell, come on, he's a fourteen (now fifteen?) year old boy who was shoved into a crazy leadership position in one of the toughest climates (if not THE toughest climate) in the Seven Kingdoms. His decisions were not easy, and I doubt I could have done better. He does, however, become colder than I'd like, and that's why I see a slow downward spiral in his humanity. I feel he's ultimately emotional, though, and he'll snap out of it. (If ADWD was just a shocker and nothing more).

IMO he lands into trouble because he's young - that's all.
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Old 12-31-2011, 10:54 AM   #853
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To go back to a previous book reference:

I read the first two books of Patrick Rothfuss' Kingkiller Chronicles this week and enjoyed them tremendously! From the first lines of The Name of the Wind, which become a theme with variations, used as bookends in both books, I was captivated. The author created a very enjoyable main character, whom the reader gets to know at two times, both past and present, and I can hardly wait for the third part of the trilogy to find out what happens. The plot is interesting, the writing is very good, with some fascinating linguistic elements and turns of phrases.
I'm glad to hear that someone else has been captivated by the books! (I really have to get the second one.) The Kvothe character is so intriguing, as his life at different times draws different responses from the reader--and given that we, as you say, know him at two times, that's quite intriguing--and there's just enough hint of his complexity not to make him totally sympathetic.

Rothfuss has Tolkien's sure hand at using suggestion well in storymaking. His timing is also bang-on. Just when I find myself thoroughly enthralled by an event or situation ,events change, not in a cheap way, but to keep me on my toes (fingers?) and remind me that there's nothing maudlin or sentimental about this work.


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I hope he does get it together and bring all the storylines back and finish the series. It's the only fantasy fiction series aimed at adults I've read since I first picked up Lord of the Rings that I could say I've been obsessed with (though I've tried with many others).
Do take a gander at Rothfuss' work if you are looking for fantasy that can satisfy adults.
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Old 12-31-2011, 01:24 PM   #854
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To go back to a previous book reference:

I read the first two books of Patrick Rothfuss' Kingkiller Chronicles this week and enjoyed them tremendously! From the first lines of The Name of the Wind, which become a theme with variations, used as bookends in both books, I was captivated.
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I'm glad to hear that someone else has been captivated by the books!
My mouth is hanging open, my old friends! When NotW received so much buzz a couple of years back, I thought I'd check it out -- but he lost me in the first few sentences with the bit about the three-part silence. I read another couple of chapters, but I thought the writing was terrible and finally gave up. Now two wights whose tastes and opinions I highly value are gushing about the book. Did I just not push in far enough? Rothfuss seems to be a divisive writer. What do you guys think of the many complaints I've seen that Kvothe is the epitome of a Mary Sue character?
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Old 01-02-2012, 06:48 PM   #855
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My mouth is hanging open, my old friends! When NotW received so much buzz a couple of years back, I thought I'd check it out -- but he lost me in the first few sentences with the bit about the three-part silence. I read another couple of chapters, but I thought the writing was terrible and finally gave up. Now two wights whose tastes and opinions I highly value are gushing about the book. Did I just not push in far enough? Rothfuss seems to be a divisive writer. What do you guys think of the many complaints I've seen that Kvothe is the epitome of a Mary Sue character?
And a happy new year to you, Mister U.

This doesn't surprise me, as I once checked into Neal Stephenson's Cryptonomicon on your recommendation, but couldn't get into it, nor do I particularly like Stephen King, another of your faves. Methinks we have different tastes. (And I was much taken by William Gibson's Neuromancer, although was disappointed by his Pattern Recognition, so I don't think it's that I don't appreciate post-modern writing. And my taste is in good company, as Ursula LeGuin enjoys the language and the music of Rothfuss's words. As you say, Rothfuss is a divisive writer. But then so was/is Tolkien.

I liked the suspense over the scraeling creature in the first chapter and the characters' different attitudes towards it and the mix of realism with fantasy in the entire world. The elements of medievalism aren't sentimental but hard-nosed. And the theme of names intrigued me. And the travelling troupe. Gypsies still in Europe today are given short shrift (having personally seen how they are treated in Paris and Rome) and I appreciated the depiction of a similar group or tribe. Maybe it's the sense of a post-modern take on a medieval world that I found interesting.

Surely you mean Gary Stu or Marty Stu, Mister U? Here's a test for such characters, which I haven't bothered to work out: Litmus test for Mary Sue characters. Kvothe often is pig-heated and makes bad decisions and his red hair I thought was a reference to his tribe rather than anything Mary Sueish--although who's to say it isn't Rothfuss's joke at such character's expense? Can't remember the colour of his eyes. But then, you're the first I've read of a complaint that he is a Mary Sue character, so I'll put it down to your inimitable wit. But more seriously, I was drawn to figuring out the discrepancies in his condition.

I wonder what our very own Downs expert on Merisu would say?
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Old 01-03-2012, 04:33 AM   #856
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Surely you mean Gary Stu or Marty Stu, Mister U? Here's a test for such characters, which I haven't bothered to work out: Litmus test for Mary Sue characters.
I haven't even read The Name of the Wind, but I still predict this Kvothe chap *would* fail that particular litmus test, simply by virtue of... being the main character in a fantasy novel. Really, I think the thing is a bit over-the-top.
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Old 01-03-2012, 04:52 PM   #857
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Pipe Twin Galadriels? I'm in heaven!

Happy New Year Barrow Downs! Hoping I will be a bit more active here this year? We'll see.

What the tale end of 2011 brought me book-wise was the Steve Erikson book series "The Mazatlan Books of the Fallen'. I'm just now reading book 1 which is Gardens of the Moon'. So far I like it!
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Old 01-03-2012, 10:54 PM   #858
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And a happy new year to you, Mister U.
And to you and your tribe, Bb. Thanks for a restrained reply to a rather annoying post on my part. Apologies to you, Esty, and other Rothfuss fans for my boorishness. I think I shall give Rothfuss another try based on the high marks given by two of my favorite wights. Who knows, I may just end up eating more humble pie for a too-hasty judgment, as happened in the case of a certain sci-fi show. Perhaps I was too over-hyped as well -- Best fantasy since Tolkien! etc. Fantasy books don't generally create enough buzz to even get on my radar these days, but NotW sure did.

Gibson is an interesting writer. Toronto guy. I love his early stuff, but I too have had a harder time getting into his later work. He's a good Twitter follow, though, if you're into such things.
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Old 01-04-2012, 07:09 AM   #859
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Happy New Year, and many merry greetings in the coming 12 months, Underhill!! I know there are a number of your favourite authors/books that don't suit my taste, so it wouldn't surprise me if you didn't like some of mine.

What I look for in a story (book, movie, TV show) is emotional warmth, and Rothfuss supplies that abundantly. The plot is not predictable, the characters have depth and breadth, and the secondary world is well-drawn and believable.

I too have a series of books that I started and put away after a few pages - Tad Williams' "Shadowmarch". Can anyone tell me if it's worth tackling them again, worth the many hours it would take to read all of them? I hesitate to invest so much time without knowing the experience will be enjoyable.
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Old 01-04-2012, 07:41 AM   #860
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I too have a series of books that I started and put away after a few pages - Tad Williams' "Shadowmarch". Can anyone tell me if it's worth tackling them again, worth the many hours it would take to read all of them? I hesitate to invest so much time without knowing the experience will be enjoyable.
What is it with Tad Williams and putting the book away after a few first pages?

(That much from me on the subject of "what fantasy books you DON'T read"...)
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Old 01-04-2012, 08:33 AM   #861
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Thanks, Legate - that's a subtle hint, but helpful!
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Old 01-05-2012, 01:38 AM   #862
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What the tale end of 2011 brought me book-wise was the Steve Erikson book series "The Mazatlan Books of the Fallen'. I'm just now reading book 1 which is Gardens of the Moon'. So far I like it!
I tried that book. Couldn't get through it. Unfortunately, there's no library even remotely near where I live (the only relatively decent one is over a thousand miles away) so each book I read must be bought. What a pain.
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Old 01-10-2012, 05:07 PM   #863
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Has anyone read The Green Child by Herbert Read? This came up as the lead item on Wikipedia the other day and I was intrigued by it.

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The Green Child is the only completed novel by the English anarchist poet and critic Herbert Read.[1] Written in 1934 and first published by Heinemann in 1935, the story is based on the 12th-century legend of two green children who mysteriously appeared in the English village of Woolpit, speaking an apparently unknown language.[2] Read described the legend in his English Prose Style, published in 1931, as "the norm to which all types of fantasy should conform".[3]
I know about the legend of the Children of Woolpit, but I've never heard of this novel before. From the synopsis, it strikes me that Guillermo del Toro might have read this before he penned Pan's Labyrinth...
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Old 01-14-2012, 05:49 PM   #864
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I never stated that he was pathetic or whiny. Just confused.
I know - I was mostly thinking back to my long debates about Jon Snow's nature with a certain Hookbill the Goomba who doesn't exactly agree with me.
I actually like the coldness you speak about, but I can see why it might turn people against him - his Brothers included.

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Did I just not push in far enough? Rothfuss seems to be a divisive writer. What do you guys think of the many complaints I've seen that Kvothe is the epitome of a Mary Sue character?
I'm now about midway through the first book, and for the first 100 pages or so I wasn't sure if I liked it enough to finish it. It's got better after that, and even though I still think every now and then that I've seen it all before, Rothfuss has some surprises in store and I've been positively surprised more than once. Based on what I've seen so far, I don't think you'll miss a lot even if you don't read it, but it's entertaining enough. Except if all you want of literature is the absence of Gary Stus (thanks B-berry! ) because I think I can see where the people who complain about it are coming from.

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Can't remember the colour of his eyes.
They're green. Sometimes a very dark green if he's in the right mood and there's a certain light, I seem to remember.

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Happy New Year Barrow Downs! Hoping I will be a bit more active here this year? We'll see.
I totally cracked up at your post title. And not just two, you see: there's Galadriel, Galadriel55 and Nerwen!

The part of my holiday that I didn't spend roleplaying was spent reading Neil Gaiman: Neverwhere and Anansi Boys. I enjoyed both tremendously. He's a truly talented writer who can create both interesting plots and many-layered characters.

Don't know yet what I'm going to read after The Name of the Wind - I might try The Wise Man's Fear, or then something else. Has anyone read anything by Joe Abercrombie - another writer I was recommended?
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Old 01-14-2012, 07:48 PM   #865
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I've read The Blade Itself trilogy. It was different, but I'm not sure if I liked it or not - a re-read would cement a feeling about it but I don't want to yet. That and Watchmen have been the only things I've read that made me step back and bleat "What did I just read??", so take that as you will.

I do want to read his other series(es?) in the same world though.
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Old 01-18-2012, 12:01 PM   #866
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I take back what I said about Rothfuss.

He's brilliant. Can't remember when I last lost so much sleep because of a book! It probably tells something that I've read about 600 pages on since my last post, and since I obviously read English slower than Finnish, I consider it an impressive achievement.

And no, I haven't really seen it all before. It just took me a while to realise it - but then, I tend to be a tad too quick to judge everything anyway.
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Old 01-18-2012, 01:25 PM   #867
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Reading became easier affair ever since I treated myself to Kindle Now I keep carrying it around in my bag reading snatches of stuff whenever there is a break in anything going on during the day (time previously dedicated to idle fiddling with the phone and other pointless activities of the kind)

In this fashion I found myself able to reread quite a few of my favourites, like Goblin Reservation by Clifford Simak (not quite fantasy, rather sci-fi, to be precise, but still with Goblins, Trolls, Banshees and a dragon in it I hope it wan't get frowned upon as not in compliance with the thread topic)

Out of ongoing fantasy reading, rereading Harry Potter series (fer meself) and reading Chronicles of Narnia to my kid
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Old 01-22-2012, 10:04 AM   #868
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Reading became easier affair ever since I treated myself to Kindle
Ugh. I downloaded the Kindle application on my ipad. I found it pretty useless
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Old 01-22-2012, 12:05 PM   #869
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I take back what I said about Rothfuss.

He's brilliant. Can't remember when I last lost so much sleep because of a book! It probably tells something that I've read about 600 pages on since my last post, and since I obviously read English slower than Finnish, I consider it an impressive achievement.

And no, I haven't really seen it all before. It just took me a while to realise it - but then, I tend to be a tad too quick to judge everything anyway.
What's sleep anyway?

Glad you are enjoying him. Scrooge that I am, I am waiting for the second one to come out in paperback.
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Old 01-22-2012, 01:34 PM   #870
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What's sleep anyway?
The thing that makes not skipping morning classes possible.

I finished The Wise Man's Fear today. It was fantastic. I enjoyed especially the Ademre, as you might guess. And I'm at a loss for what to read now (which means that I'm actually reading schoolbooks for once).
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Old 01-22-2012, 07:31 PM   #871
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Fantasy books? Pratchett's Discworld series immediately comes to mind. I've read those two or three times.
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Old 01-23-2012, 01:37 PM   #872
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I think I finally realised why I put Tolkien ahead of other fantasy writers. It's not because I read him first; it's because he did things a little more realistically when it came to his protagonist. After all, many seemingly unimpressive people have done great things - and those great things have not always been appreciated or even acknowledged by other people. Frodo, just a three-foot-tall Hobbit, goes on a quest not for glory or vengeance, but because he feels it's right (from the heart), and actually succeeds in it. And yet people in his own village have no idea that he is the reason they are still there. The only people who know about it (aside from the Fellowship, Fatty and Bilbo) are a different species and live hundreds of miles away.

I mean, Frodo can barely fight with a sword - one could say Sting does all the work for him - and yet he's a hero. I hate the way most 'heroes' these days are just tall, slim, athletic boys and girls who are perfect at archery or can read minds or do other things that hardly anyone can relate to. Frodo's a hero from the heart - where it really counts.

Yeah, sorry for the sappy speech, and I'm pretty sure anyone could argue with what I've said because of my careless phrasing, but you get the general gist.
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Old 01-23-2012, 04:28 PM   #873
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Not gonna argue with you as you've just put most of my own thoughts into words. I think it's even sadder that Frodo's quest is not appreciated by those whose appreciation he would value above all others - the Shire. But again, I could argue with myself:

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...that what he [Frodo] had to do, he had to do, if he could, and that whether Faramir or Aragorn or Elrond or Galadriel or Gandalf or anyone else ever knew about it was beside the purpose.
Such a simple quote, but tells so much! And notice that Frodo doesn't mention hobbits. Maybe he knows deep down that he doesn't want to be a hero among his own.



Am I turning into a schizophrenic, arguing with myself?
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Old 01-24-2012, 01:17 PM   #874
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Ugh. I downloaded the Kindle application on my ipad. I found it pretty useless
I have an app named FBreader on android phone, it works just fine - reads epub, mobi and fb2 formats, meaning I'm always copying whatever I'm currently reading on Kindle to the phone (as Kindle resides in a backpack and I'm not always moving about with it).

I used to have it on Nokia before that, so there was a version for Symbian OS too, they might have something in Iphone line too (fbreader.org was the site), I'm positive there was one for Mac at the very least.

Hope it's not taking the thread away from it's purpose, let's say the purpose of this post is to make fantasy books' reading easier
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Old 01-30-2012, 06:30 PM   #875
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I have an app named FBreader on android phone, it works just fine - reads epub, mobi and fb2 formats, meaning I'm always copying whatever I'm currently reading on Kindle to the phone (as Kindle resides in a backpack and I'm not always moving about with it).

I used to have it on Nokia before that, so there was a version for Symbian OS too, they might have something in Iphone line too (fbreader.org was the site), I'm positive there was one for Mac at the very least.
Lol, I'm about as informed about phones and laptops as Tolkien was about general machines I may use Amazon, but it's always for buying actual books. Kindle books are so expensive And if it goes once, it goes forever. The Kindle, I mean.
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Old 01-30-2012, 07:01 PM   #876
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What Galadriel said.

I like real books and I plan to continue reading real books for as long as I possibly can.
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Old 01-31-2012, 07:35 AM   #877
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I'm currently reading A Wizard of Earthsea (did I mention that before?) but I'm a little surprised at Le Guin's portrayal of women - considering she herself is a woman. All the women in the first book are either old and useless or pretty and good. I was also taken aback by Le Guin's use of the phrases 'weak as a woman's magic' and 'wicked as a woman's magic' in consecutive sentences. So women's magic is either weak or evil? Wow. This book takes feminism back to the 1700s. Considering Earthsea is not set in the primary world (even if it is set a 'long time ago'), she could have easily given women at least intellectual strength.

Now, I get a bit tired of feminist arguments from time to time, but this lady really makes me want to hit her. I hear she gets really feminist in the fourth book, but that it's also really bad. Sigh.

I am also reading His Dark Materials, and would like to know if anyone else thinks that Lyra is a blatant Sue.

Yes, I am annoyed.
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Old 01-31-2012, 07:54 PM   #878
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I'm currently reading A Wizard of Earthsea (did I mention that before?) but I'm a little surprised at Le Guin's portrayal of women - considering she herself is a woman. All the women in the first book are either old and useless or pretty and good.
Serret is beautiful and, if not definitely evil, at least highly morally ambiguous– but then as she's the only powerful female magic-user in the book, I'm not sure if that helps matters.

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I was also taken aback by Le Guin's use of the phrases 'weak as a woman's magic' and 'wicked as a woman's magic' in consecutive sentences. So women's magic is either weak or evil? Wow. This book takes feminism back to the 1700s. Considering Earthsea is not set in the primary world (even if it is set a 'long time ago'), she could have easily given women at least intellectual strength.
I don't think it's clear, even in the first book, whether you're meant to take all that "wicked as women's magic" stuff as being real, or merely a matter of prejudice. Not that I buy that it's deliberate social criticism either– it's not like the belief is ever challenged, even in a "token" sort of way.

Quote:
Now, I get a bit tired of feminist arguments from time to time, but this lady really makes me want to hit her. I hear she gets really feminist in the fourth book, but that it's also really bad.
Unfortunately, yes– mainly because so much of it consists of Le Guin vainly trying to talk her way out of the fairly gratuitous sexism of the previous books.

With all that, she is still one of my favourite SF writers, and the Earthsea trilogy one of the few works of high fantasy I think really compares to Lord of the Rings– by being as different as possible. Honestly I'm really getting rather jaded about the seemingly endless supply of brick-novels that do little more than recycle the old cliches.
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Old 02-01-2012, 12:35 PM   #879
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And if it goes once, it goes forever. The Kindle, I mean.
Books may be kept in several places - like I have them stored in the desktop PC, in the laptop, in both phones and the kindle - I don't think ALL my gadgets are going to break down together all of a sudden

And even if they do, the e-books you purchased from Amazon are also stored on Amazon server - you can re-download them at any point you like
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Old 02-01-2012, 12:56 PM   #880
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[QUOTE]
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Serret is beautiful and, if not definitely evil, at least highly morally ambiguous– but then as she's the only powerful female magic-user in the book, I'm not sure if that helps matters.
I didn't find her all that ambiguous

Quote:
I don't think it's clear, even in the first book, whether you're meant to take all that "wicked as women's magic" stuff as being real, or merely a matter of prejudice. Not that I buy that it's deliberate social criticism either– it's not like the belief is ever challenged, even in a "token" sort of way.
True - and there's little to prove those statements wrong.

Quote:
With all that, she is still one of my favourite SF writers, and the Earthsea trilogy one of the few works of high fantasy I think really compares to Lord of the Rings– by being as different as possible. Honestly I'm really getting rather jaded about the seemingly endless supply of brick-novels that do little more than recycle the old cliches.
Aside from the sexism factor, I quite like her books as well. Ged is a really good character, and the philosophy about names is quite interesting. And I know what you mean about the recycling of old cliches. This seems to be the general plot of most fantasy novels, with nothing very different about the way it's done: orphaned/abused child - child finds out he/she is a great wizard/sorcerer or the last of a species or a great lineage - sets out for vengeance/identity and meets mysterious person (usually a man) on the way - man turns out to be the only person who can 'teach' the protagonist the things they want to learn - protagonist learns all ridiculously fast and well - protagonist up against a series of villains - protagonist comes out victorious without really sacrificing anything that is really important.

Sigh.
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