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 What are you reading? (2018)

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T O P I C    R E V I E W
Wooly Rupert Posted - 01 Jan 2016 : 22:59:08
I decided that we weren't going to continue using the 2014 reading discussion... So here's a new one for the new year!

(And since this thread has but a few pages, might as well use it for 2017, as well.)

(Only up to 11 pages, so might as well continue for another year.)
25   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
Wooly Rupert Posted - 18 Jun 2018 : 18:06:48
Currently working my way through the Legends of the Riftwar books; I'm now on the second book, Murder in LaMut. I kinda remembered the prior book, Honoured Enemy*, but this one, it's been a long time since I read it and I may have only read it the one time -- so it's almost a new read, to me. I'm 100 pages in, and thus far, I've not remembered anything from having read it previously.

The next book will be the third one of the series, focused on and titled for my fave character from all of the books, Jimmy the Hand.

After that, I'll dip back into the new pile of books, and then back to Midkemia for a while.



*Yes, the British spelling. The Legends of the Riftwar books were published in the UK, before being published in the US. I'd never even heard of them, until my absent, senile, and still-missed friend SiriusBlack said something about it, back in the day.
goblins Posted - 11 Jun 2018 : 14:00:57
I finished Shadowdale over the weekend and started on Tantras. Iíve been reading Forgotten Realms novels off-and-on pretty much since they started being published, but I never really conceptually embraced the setting much more than as a framework to drape the trappings of the tabletop game over. I was really just looking for a substitute for the sessions I had stopped having opportunities to play. The Finderís Stone trilogy and now the Avatar series have me hooked into the Realms as a world onto itself. The characterizations and plotting have been very satisfying and Iím growing more-and-more attached to the universe independent of its relationship to the gaming sourcebooks which fostered my initial interest. I know some of what is coming, and I am excited to see it play out.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 08 Jun 2018 : 17:37:09
I'm revisiting the four* books of the Hitchhiker's Trilogy, right now. I will likely read another standalone novel or two after that, before getting back to the Riftwar-related books

I don't know if I've ever mentioned this, in regards to the Hitchhiker's books -- but there was some censoring of the language in those books, when published in the US. I did not know this, initially... My original copies were from the early 80's, and I'd gotten them from a used book store. Then I lost my copies in the fire. When my wife and I were on our honeymoon in Ireland, we wandered into a bookstore in Dublin, where I saw an omnibus printing of the four books. So I decided to go ahead and replace my copies.

I read the books on the flight home (Dublin to Orlando, non-stop, is not a short flight!). I'd read my original copies enough that I noticed some changes here and there, and so I googled it when I got home, and that's how I learned about the censorship.

Other than little bits here and there, the most notable change was the guy at the party who'd won the award for the most gratuitous use of the word "Belgium" in a serious screenplay -- in the original version, it was the f-bomb. And that version isn't as funny, to me, as the edited version.

*There are four books in the trilogy. Rumors of a fifth book are the most vile heresy.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 08 Jun 2018 : 17:25:15
quote:
Originally posted by Taleras

Just finished The Sapphire Crescent, it was a fine book. I am sure that I will finish the trilogy at some point, but definitely not on my radar right now. I also cruised through a bunch of the Cosmere short stories, most notably Mistborn: Secret History, which objectively is kind of a bad book, but the background to Era 1 and the tidbits to Era 2 that you get are quite interesting.

I'm trying to decide whether to start WoT or continue the Drizzt series with Gauntlgrym... Any suggestions?



I've not read either, myself, but I've heard good things about the Wheel of Time books.
Taleras Posted - 08 Jun 2018 : 16:23:22
Just finished The Sapphire Crescent, it was a fine book. I am sure that I will finish the trilogy at some point, but definitely not on my radar right now. I also cruised through a bunch of the Cosmere short stories, most notably Mistborn: Secret History, which objectively is kind of a bad book, but the background to Era 1 and the tidbits to Era 2 that you get are quite interesting.

I'm trying to decide whether to start WoT or continue the Drizzt series with Gauntlgrym... Any suggestions?
Taleras Posted - 17 May 2018 : 00:52:45
quote:
Originally posted by Bragi

I've been listening to Whisper of Waves on audio book and I have come to realize I pronounce quite a few realms terms incorrectly. Most egregious of which are the names of the months. I'm working on correcting that but 30 years of pronouncing something incorrectly is hard to change. As for the book itself, it has been interesting. It made much more sense once I realized it was set in the Lake of Steam area and not the Lake of Mists area.



I can't speak to that book in particular, but I have noticed when different narrators do books in the same series or "realm" they often pronounce things differently. So you might not be wrong...
Bragi Posted - 16 May 2018 : 23:58:28
I've been listening to Whisper of Waves on audio book and I have come to realize I pronounce quite a few realms terms incorrectly. Most egregious of which are the names of the months. I'm working on correcting that but 30 years of pronouncing something incorrectly is hard to change. As for the book itself, it has been interesting. It made much more sense once I realized it was set in the Lake of Steam area and not the Lake of Mists area.
Taleras Posted - 16 May 2018 : 00:56:11
Just finished The Ghost King which was my favorite of this most recent trilogy within the Drizzt series, although I'm still not sure how I feel about the ending. I'm onto Bands of Mourning now, but am excited to get to Gauntlgrym and see what's next for the series...

Although I also want to get to the rest of the Cosmere, as well as WoT. I need more time to read...
goblins Posted - 15 May 2018 : 21:20:40
I started on Shadowdale this past weekend. Iím just a little bit in, but I like it.

I ended up enjoying Neversfall, so I am happy I made it through this time. I like the main character Adeenya quite a bit. The story is a mix of mystery and military/political intrigue, but it is heavy on the relationship dynamics as well. It touches on colonialism, and the tension between cultural conservation and xenophobia, but it doesnít explore these issues in great detail. Most of the conceptual focus is on the moral gradations of Law.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 07 May 2018 : 01:54:37
I just finished reading the Riftwar Saga, the first four books of the series. I've decided to do the Empire trilogy next, since it covers a lot of the same time period.

I think I'll take a break after these books, so I don't burn out on the series, as I've done before. Not sure what that break will consist of, though.
goblins Posted - 05 May 2018 : 16:22:20
I finished the Finderís Stone trilogy a week or so ago. I enjoyed it immensely. The characters and big action set pieces are some of my favorites of any novels Iíve experienced.

I was a huge fan of Jeff Grubbís and Karen Novakís Marvel Super Heroes work in the 80s and 90s, but I have probably the least amount of experience with 2nd Edition era D&D products comparatively across all of the editions. I was planning on jumping around 2/3/4 edition novels, but I liked this so much I decided to start picking up the Avatar series as well (and I will probably move on to the Harpers after).

I renew/cancel my Audible membership every paycheck so I can get 4 titles a month. A few years ago I had a bunch of iTunes gift cards I used on sampling different D&D series when I was just getting back into it. When I finish a series in between my renewal schedule, Iíll go back and try to relisten to a title that didnít click with me (itís usually because the readerís voice isnít strong enough to be heard consistently when Iím walking outside-which is integral to how I enjoy these novels).

Iím doing that now with Neversfall from the Citadels trilogy, and I did it last month with the Alabaster Staff from the Rouges. Iím only about half way through Neversfall, but Iím finding it engaging. Itís building tension well, and its color, settings, characterizations, and relationship dynamics are interesting.

I loved the Alabaster Staff, probably most so because I found it incredibly interesting that the novel deals directly with the impact of protracted war on civilian populations, Messemprar seems hugely influenced by Baghdad, and this novel was published in July 2003. I also really like the use of the deities, and the humanization of the non-good characters. Iíd continue on with the Rouges, but unfortunately I have a terrible time hearing Jean Brassardís voice when there is ambient noise. Iím a little worried because Nicole Greevyís isnít the easiest to pick up either, and she narrates the Avatar series.
Grisix Posted - 05 May 2018 : 15:54:35
My last book "read" (audible) is a Night Without Stars, the finale part of the Chronicles of the Fallers. Currently "reading" The Herald.
Artemas Entreri Posted - 05 May 2018 : 12:18:21
Finished VR's Guide to Ghosts and starting VR's Guide to Vampires.
ElaineCunningham Posted - 26 Apr 2018 : 13:50:07
quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

quote:
Originally posted by ElaineCunningham

Currently reading The Fairies of Sadieville, the final book in Alex Bledsoe's series about the Tufa, descendants of the Tuatha de Dana living in modern-day Appalachia.



Hmmmm, it sounds kind of American Gods "like", and I must say I really liked that novel because of how much it showed America but with ties to the supernatural (the same reason I still like the Supernatural series despite its "jumping the shark" several times). How well does it seem to make you feel that you're immersed in modern society, but still fey?



There are always human characters who provide windows into the fey world. And the Tufa, though they keep to themselves and are considered strange by locals, appear to be human. They live in a poor county in the Tennessee mountains, and the casual observer would not find them exceptional but for their musical skills. The fey lore and background are woven in slowly, and the magic is subtle.

I would start at the beginning, with the book The Hum and the Shiver.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 25 Apr 2018 : 01:24:19
Just finished reading an old favorite, Faerie Tale. It prompted me to do something I've been thinking of for a while, now: re-reading the Riftwar books -- the entire lot of them.

I've read all but the last two, before. But the last time I read thru the series, it became something of a chore. Not because of any flaw with the books, but simply because I get bored if I read too much of one thing at a time. The Dresden Files have been one of the few exceptions to that rule, and I think that's partially because there are still so many unanswered questions in the series, and it keeps building on everything that's gone before.

So with this read-thru, I'm probably going to stop after each trilogy/quartet of books, read something else, then return to the series.

About the Riftwar Saga itself... One of the first fantasy novels I ever read was Magician: Master, and I've read it so many times that I can still pick out what parts in the Preferred Edition weren't in the original release I read. And Jimmy the Hand will always be one of my favorite fantasy characters, along with Nakor the Blue Rider.
goblins Posted - 12 Apr 2018 : 22:05:01
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by goblins

I listen to fiction on Audible. In that sense, I am ďreadingĒ the Finderís Stone trilogy at the moment, having recently finished The Wyvernís Spur. I should get a start on Song of the Saurials next week after I finish off a Star Wars novel over the weekend (Heir to the Jedi).

I started off 2018 by finishing up the Nentir Vale portion of the Abyssal Plague saga.



I found Heir to the Jedi disappointing, myself. It wasn't bad, it just totally failed to grab me.



It hasnít really grabbed me either (I bought it in October 2016 and this is probably my fourth attempt to get through it) but I am enjoying it. It was actually the controversy over Lukeís portrayal in The Last Jedi that probably made it stick this time. When I was growing up, I found Luke to probably be the least compelling character in Star Wars. I felt the optimism his character embodied seemed more like naivetť (that almost flirted with indifference) than hopeful defiance. Hanís and Leiaís moral complexity seemed far more interesting. Iím now interpreting Luke with a little more nuance, and Iím not sure I would have without the stories coming out regarding tension between Hamillís and Johnsonís visions for the character. Iím a lot more engaged with Lukeís internal monologues in this novel than I would have been otherwise.

As an aside, one thing I still find really strange is how little time Luke spends considering his dead aunt and uncle in contrast with his heartache over the loss of Ben Kenobi. There could be something interesting lurking here regarding latent darkside tendencies (he misses Ben because he was a potential means to an end, while his Uncle stood in the way of his dreams).
Thoth Posted - 12 Apr 2018 : 16:00:44
I'm into the third book of the Malazan Series, Memories of Ice.

The series is getting better with each book.
sleyvas Posted - 12 Apr 2018 : 14:12:15
quote:
Originally posted by ElaineCunningham

Currently reading The Fairies of Sadieville, the final book in Alex Bledsoe's series about the Tufa, descendants of the Tuatha de Dana living in modern-day Appalachia.



Hmmmm, it sounds kind of American Gods "like", and I must say I really liked that novel because of how much it showed America but with ties to the supernatural (the same reason I still like the Supernatural series despite its "jumping the shark" several times). How well does it seem to make you feel that you're immersed in modern society, but still fey?
ElaineCunningham Posted - 12 Apr 2018 : 12:38:28
Currently reading The Fairies of Sadieville, the final book in Alex Bledsoe's series about the Tufa, descendants of the Tuatha de Dana living in modern-day Appalachia.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 12 Apr 2018 : 03:29:43
quote:
Originally posted by goblins

I listen to fiction on Audible. In that sense, I am ďreadingĒ the Finderís Stone trilogy at the moment, having recently finished The Wyvernís Spur. I should get a start on Song of the Saurials next week after I finish off a Star Wars novel over the weekend (Heir to the Jedi).

I started off 2018 by finishing up the Nentir Vale portion of the Abyssal Plague saga.



I found Heir to the Jedi disappointing, myself. It wasn't bad, it just totally failed to grab me.
CorellonsDevout Posted - 11 Apr 2018 : 23:03:16
Just finished The Thief, and I am currently reading The Lawrence Browne Affair and Called to Darkness (Pathfinder).
goblins Posted - 11 Apr 2018 : 22:07:45
I listen to fiction on Audible. In that sense, I am ďreadingĒ the Finderís Stone trilogy at the moment, having recently finished The Wyvernís Spur. I should get a start on Song of the Saurials next week after I finish off a Star Wars novel over the weekend (Heir to the Jedi).

I started off 2018 by finishing up the Nentir Vale portion of the Abyssal Plague saga.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 10 Apr 2018 : 17:39:10
quote:
Originally posted by Artemas Entreri

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert



Now I'm onto The Republic of Thieves, which likely will make the best new reads list -- it's the third book of the trilogy, and the prior ones made the list. I've highly enjoyed the books (the others are The Lies of Locke Lamora and Red Seas Under Red Skies; I quite recommend them).



Curious to hear your thoughts on that one. For me it felt flat compared to the previous 2.



I enjoyed it, but after seeing the capers in the first two books, it was disappointing not to have a caper in the third.

On the flipside, though, I did like that we finally got to meet Sabetha -- it bugged me in the first book that she was referenced so many times but never appeared at all. In that first book, she was mentioned enough times that I felt like she was a character in the book -- but her absence made all the references seem somewhat heavy-handed and almost gratuitous.
Artemas Entreri Posted - 10 Apr 2018 : 15:44:00
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert



Now I'm onto The Republic of Thieves, which likely will make the best new reads list -- it's the third book of the trilogy, and the prior ones made the list. I've highly enjoyed the books (the others are The Lies of Locke Lamora and Red Seas Under Red Skies; I quite recommend them).



Curious to hear your thoughts on that one. For me it felt flat compared to the previous 2.
Artemas Entreri Posted - 10 Apr 2018 : 15:41:58
Reading Van Richten's Guide to Ghosts.

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