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 What are you reading? (2018-2019)
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
32223 Posts

Posted - 21 Jul 2019 :  02:10:39  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Wow, I've not posted my own readings in this thread in a while... I'm not even going to try to list everything I'd read since my last post here; I read quickly and make a point of incorporating reading time into my day, so the "52 books in a year" challenge isn't so much of a challenge for me.

Most recently, I read V. E. Schwab's Shades of Magic trilogy, which I really, really enjoyed. I then read Zeus is Undead [This One has Zombies!]. I didn't find it quite as good as the previous book, Zeus is Dead, but it was still hilarious.

Next up was one I'd had for a while but kept avoiding: An Absolutely Remarkable Thing. I wound up loving the book.

Right now, I'm working on an old favorite: A Hero Born. A month or two ago, I had some cause to go into the library before doing the usual Pokémon Go Community Day thing (my local library is the best place in the area to do those!), and found a copy of that book in a book sale -- and it was in better shape than my copy that I'd picked up after the fire, so I jumped on it.

Not really sure what I'm going to read next. Been thinking about revising the Finder's Stone and Lost Gods books, but I'm not sure on that one.

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Captain Grafalcon
Learned Scribe

Brazil
85 Posts

Posted - 22 Jul 2019 :  14:13:46  Show Profile Send Captain Grafalcon a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Reading Maestro, by R.A. Salvatore. For the non-fantasy category, also reading Lost Illusions, by Honoré de Balzac. Both recommended!

"Surely you recognize that armies carrying banners are almost always thieves—until they win."
Jarlaxle, mercenary leader of Bregan D'aerthe.
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Captain Grafalcon
Learned Scribe

Brazil
85 Posts

Posted - 28 Jul 2019 :  00:08:25  Show Profile Send Captain Grafalcon a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Started Brimstone angels, by Erin M. Evans. A very good writing and storytelling!

"Surely you recognize that armies carrying banners are almost always thieves—until they win."
Jarlaxle, mercenary leader of Bregan D'aerthe.
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CorellonsDevout
Great Reader

USA
2316 Posts

Posted - 28 Jul 2019 :  00:49:32  Show Profile  Send CorellonsDevout an AOL message Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I haven't posted what I am reading here in a while, either. I also make a point of reading everyday, and I tend to go through books. Last year I read a 105 books. I am at 43 so far this year (I have been a little busier, but I do make time to read).

I finally read the Nethril trilogy. I don't know why it took me so long. Tbh, it wasn't what I was expecting. I was expecting to read about Karsus and how he became insane, but it wasn't even really about him, except as a secondary character. In some ways that is good, as it prevented me from getting attached lol, but I felt the overall characters and plot wws... subpar. I don't know, I guess I just expected something different, after all I have heard about Nethril (not to mention the return of Shade Enclave).

Anyway, I also won't detail all the books I have read since my last update, either. Along with fantasy, which is a given for me, I have been reading some really interesting nonfiction books on Japan. Currently, I am reading Engaging in Japanese Philosophy by Thomas P. Kasulis.

Sweet water and light laughter

Edited by - CorellonsDevout on 28 Jul 2019 00:52:36
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CorellonsDevout
Great Reader

USA
2316 Posts

Posted - 28 Jul 2019 :  00:50:28  Show Profile  Send CorellonsDevout an AOL message Send CorellonsDevout a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Captain Grafalcon

Started Brimstone angels, by Erin M. Evans. A very good writing and storytelling!



Brimstone Angels was great.

Sweet water and light laughter
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
32223 Posts

Posted - 28 Jul 2019 :  03:43:50  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Just finished a BattleTech eBook, Iron Dawn. Not great, not bad. It's set in 3150, but has the same feel as the original, pre-Jihad stuff, so that was a huge plus. What was a little odd, for me, was the premise of a bunch of planetary nobles sponsoring kids -- even orphans from other worlds -- and sending them to a military academy. And not just that, but regularly having them over for "family dinners" and such. Sure, it's been 100 years since the stuff I'm more familiar with, and certainly, not all worlds will be run the same, but that was still an odd note.

Also odd was a Combine unit deciding to go rogue and make their own little fiefdom, carving it out of the Federated Suns.

Now I'm reading a Shadowrun novel, Shadows Down Under. I really liked the Shadowrun stuff when it first came out, so it's good to see the setting getting some love again.

I've got a couple Star Wars novels on deck, next. I won't have them in hand until Monday, though -- my local post office consistently displays incompetence in delivering the mail, and my Amazon packages almost never get here as quickly as Amazon promises, because they get to the post office and then just sit.

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12swords
Seeker

19 Posts

Posted - 30 Jul 2019 :  02:13:34  Show Profile Send 12swords a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I've never played the game, but I did read one of the early BattleTech novels, by William H. Keith Jr. I remember it being pretty good for an RPG novel. The writer is former military and did a good job in describing the management of a fighting company.

I enjoyed the Shadowrun RPG but never really played it. The novels I never really cared for. One of the early ones had a scene where some elf assassin was getting raped by a couple troll bodyguards, that was a little too gritty for me.

Currently I'm reading The Expanse series of novels, went through the first few really fast but getting bogged down with Babylon's Ashes. Now I'm sort of flipping back and forth through that and some RPG books (FR and Pathfinder), FR novels (Timeless by RAS), and online fiction.
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
32223 Posts

Posted - 30 Jul 2019 :  05:14:34  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by 12swords

I've never played the game, but I did read one of the early BattleTech novels, by William H. Keith Jr. I remember it being pretty good for an RPG novel. The writer is former military and did a good job in describing the management of a fighting company.

I enjoyed the Shadowrun RPG but never really played it. The novels I never really cared for. One of the early ones had a scene where some elf assassin was getting raped by a couple troll bodyguards, that was a little too gritty for me.




I discovered BattleTech and Shadowrun both around 1990ish... I didn't play BTech for the first time until like 2000, and my one time playing the Shadowrun RPG was at GenCon in 2015 or '16!

I did play a lot of BattleTech, but only the minis game -- never the RPG side of it. As with Shadowrun, I simply never had the chance.

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Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
32223 Posts

Posted - 30 Jul 2019 :  10:04:35  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The Shadowrun book proved better than expected, though there have been better ones.

Next up, one I've been waiting for: Thrawn: Treason. The Thrawn books are among the few Expanded Universe books I read back when it was still a thing, so it was great to see Thrawn become canon again. And I love how Zahn has kept everything about the old, non-canon Thrawn compatible with the new, canon Thrawn.

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Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
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12swords
Seeker

19 Posts

Posted - 30 Jul 2019 :  15:55:43  Show Profile Send 12swords a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I got into Shadowrun when it first came out, in the 90's, but IIRC only played once or twice with my gaming group back then. I did like the concept though, high fantasy combined with cyberpunk? Pshhhh....
I think I owned one or two of the BattleTech books as well, but I completely forgot there was a wargame version as well as an RPG version.

I've tried to get into the Star Wars novels some, and I've heard the original Thrawn trilogy by Zahn were some of the best examples of that lineup. I think I've read the first third of the first Thrawn book before moving on. For some reason, I like the movies more than the books...
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
32223 Posts

Posted - 14 Aug 2019 :  01:56:50  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Kind of on a Star Wars kick right now... After Thrawn: Treason, I read one called Alphabet Squadron.

It's got a not-uncommon premise: take a group of people who don't know each other, put them together, give them a common goal, and then sit back and watch.

There was an A-wing pilot, a B-wing pilot, a U-wing pilot, an X-wing pilot, and a Y-wing pilot. Hence, the name.

The author did avoid a couple of tropes: it wasn't the inspirational leader that pulled the group together, and they didn't mesh to become some sort of amazing team, either. They did eventually mesh, but it wasn't because of -- in fact, it was almost in spite of -- their leader, the X-wing pilot who was a former TIE fighter pilot.

Where the author failed is that only two of the five characters were interesting. The leader was standoffish and aloof the whole time and not really likable, the U-wing pilot was a mystery the entire book, and while the B-wing pilot did get some air time, it was the remaining two that really carried the story.

The author did clearly set up a potential sequel, but I'm hoping that sequel never happens. This author had their chance, it's someone else's turn.

Now I'm reading Last Shot. It's a little confusing, the way it jumps back and forth between pre-Rebellion, post-Solo Han, pre-Solo Lando, and post-Endor both of them, but I am enjoying it more than the previous one.

A minor character that was just introduced is one I hope becomes a main character: A Gungan that cuts off and berates Han as soon as Han says "Meesa." This Gungan talks normally and is entirely unlike Jar Jar.

And there was this part:

"Lando hadn't taken good care of the Falcon's main sitting area. Which was to say, he had taken too-good care of it. The guy was meticulous. When Han had won it fair and square(ish) in that fateful sabacc game a while back, he'd found the entire ship spotless, souped up, sparkling. Who could live in those conditions? Unacceptable. Han had immediately gotten to work scuffing it up, making it a place where a regular person could kick back and enjoy themself, not some maniac's immaculate cape museum."

There are a couple of other great lines about Lando and his cape collection, too. I think Lando must be the author's favorite character, because the author is clearly enjoying getting into Lando's head.

Despite the confusing narrative shifts, I'm enjoying this one.

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Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
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I am the Giant Space Hamster of Ill Omen!
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