The Return of Talking Time

Go Back   The Return of Talking Time > Talking about media > Talking about books

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #12211  
Old 02-08-2018, 05:47 AM
Octopus Prime's Avatar
Octopus Prime Octopus Prime is online now
Mystery Contraption
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: The Great White North
Posts: 44,084
Default

You’d think that, if only through sheer repetition, and the fact that it’s the title of the third book in the series that Abhorsen would stop being a distinctly terrible Fantasy Word, and you’d be wrong. Still can’t think of anything quite so uniquely awful in any genre.

In any case, it was a definite step up from the previous Old Kingdom book, Lireal, if only because the two of them are halves of the same story, and this is the one that had a conclusion, as opposed to an abrupt ending. Though the ending was still pretty abrupt. And the fourth book, which I just started, is a prequel that takes place 600 years previously, so all the unresolved plot hooks are not likely to be addressed in it.
Reply With Quote
  #12212  
Old 02-08-2018, 10:53 AM
Paul le Fou's Avatar
Paul le Fou Paul le Fou is offline
We just don't know.
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Seattle
Posts: 19,074
Default

The Martian was v. good! Some of the humor was a little tryhard, but never got cringey, so eh. It was really exciting and gripping, which is especially impressive because half of the book by volume is air and water chemistry (and it was fascinating).

High school science teachers couldn't have asked god for a greater boon than this. They'll be reading this book in class for decades.
Reply With Quote
  #12213  
Old 02-09-2018, 01:45 PM
Octopus Prime's Avatar
Octopus Prime Octopus Prime is online now
Mystery Contraption
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: The Great White North
Posts: 44,084
Default

Opted to drop Clariel, and declare myself done with the series. However, my excuse for why I wasn’t enthused with it can only be described in a way that makes it sound amazing and should, rightly, cause everyone (including myself) who reads this post to want to slap me in the face and scream “WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU?!?!”

But I believe in honesty above all things, so here we a-go.

*ahem*

“It’s like Downton Abbey, except with the promise of impending skeleton attacks.”

Somehow, somehow that does not result in a book I’m keen on continuing!
Reply With Quote
  #12214  
Old 02-09-2018, 02:13 PM
Rascally Badger's Avatar
Rascally Badger Rascally Badger is offline
This Guy
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Hell, Earth
Posts: 9,322
Default

I finished reading Oathbringer. I don't know that I like Sanderson's Stormlight Archive series, which is a strange realization to come to 3500 pages in. Maybe I'm just not a doorstop, epic fantasy guy anymore. Its not that there is anything really wrong with Oathbringer, it is a surprising complete volume for a book that is part 3 of 10 or so. I still don't like Sanderson's "witty" dialogue, but I've had that problem with every book I've ever read from him. I just don't remember much between books and I don't feel any desire to go back and reread the earlier books. I like the characters as I'm reading, but I don't recall much about them after a couple of weeks. The book just kind of slides off my brain.
Reply With Quote
  #12215  
Old 02-09-2018, 03:04 PM
shivam's Avatar
shivam shivam is online now
gatchapon 3*
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: San Mateo
Posts: 24,153
Default

my problem with oathbreaker is that he's trying too hard to force in his world building. Jordan did it seamlessly, but with sanderson it feels like he's going out of his way to say THE SKY IN THIS WORLD IS GREEN GUYS.

Also, the book reads like a novelization of a moba or something. the shardbearers are your hero units with oversized swords and magic they have to recharge, and they run in straight lines out to kill mooks and claim territory etc.

overall, this isn't his best series, and that's kinda sad.
Reply With Quote
  #12216  
Old 02-09-2018, 03:32 PM
Rascally Badger's Avatar
Rascally Badger Rascally Badger is offline
This Guy
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Hell, Earth
Posts: 9,322
Default

Yeah, I agree with most of that. On the worldbuilding point, part of the problem is that the world is that different. It isn't one or two thing that separate it from the "real world," there are a half dozen things that do so. And they don't really seem to relate to each other. Sanderson set himself a hard task, and can't quite handle it.

I don't want to overstate my thoughts on the book. I liked it well enough that I'll be back for the sequel.
Reply With Quote
  #12217  
Old 02-11-2018, 03:48 AM
Octopus Prime's Avatar
Octopus Prime Octopus Prime is online now
Mystery Contraption
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: The Great White North
Posts: 44,084
Default

Those are all good points, but I considered them all to be features, not bugs.

Roshar is one of, if not the, most unique settings I’ve seen in any fantasy novel because it is constantly zagging whenever you expect it to zig. Sometimes in fairly subtle ways, usually in greater “everything is bugs and rocks” ways. And Branderson always depicts action scenes in the most video gamey way possible, this time it’s just as a MOBA or Dynasty Warriors game instead of Devil May Cry.
Reply With Quote
  #12218  
Old 02-11-2018, 09:05 AM
masterthes's Avatar
masterthes masterthes is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 725
Default

The Collected Letters of C.S. Lewis: Volume 1 edited by Walter Hooper. I became interested in reading collections of correspondences when I read the two collections of Hunter S. Thompson's letters from a few years back, which I really enjoyed, so it's lately been a sub genre that I've become interested in
Reply With Quote
  #12219  
Old 02-11-2018, 09:18 AM
Paul le Fou's Avatar
Paul le Fou Paul le Fou is offline
We just don't know.
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Seattle
Posts: 19,074
Default

Grabbed from the shelf a perennial TT favorite, The Lies of Locke Lamora. Found the beginning kind of hard to pay attention to; I kept having to re-read paragraphs because I'd realize I'd lost interest partway through. Maybe too much fantasy worldbuilding and backstory early on? Having a bit of trouble picturing the city, too, despite all the effort expended on describing it. Might just be me reading mainly at night and with other things on my mind, who knows. Not that far in, and it's started to pick up now that the first con is on, so that's good.
Reply With Quote
  #12220  
Old 02-11-2018, 09:55 AM
Octopus Prime's Avatar
Octopus Prime Octopus Prime is online now
Mystery Contraption
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: The Great White North
Posts: 44,084
Default

LoLL is definitely the sort of book that makes a complicated first impression. Once that’s out of the way it’s smooth sailing.
Reply With Quote
  #12221  
Old 02-11-2018, 10:10 AM
Loki's Avatar
Loki Loki is offline
2018 is the new 2017
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 15,046
Default

It's got one of the worst first paragraphs in all of fantasy, but yes, it gets better.
Reply With Quote
  #12222  
Old 02-11-2018, 11:09 AM
Solitayre's Avatar
Solitayre Solitayre is offline
Not much of a donkey
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Michigan
Posts: 8,884
Default

I will never not say that Lies' first and second chapter needed to be switched.
Reply With Quote
  #12223  
Old 02-11-2018, 01:35 PM
taosterman's Avatar
taosterman taosterman is online now
It's dog eat dog
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: A2
Posts: 9,996
Default

Proper Name Syndrome is one of my biggest pet peeves in all of fiction, but once Locke Lamora gets going it's pretty gripping and easy to follow.
Reply With Quote
  #12224  
Old 02-11-2018, 02:04 PM
Octopus Prime's Avatar
Octopus Prime Octopus Prime is online now
Mystery Contraption
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: The Great White North
Posts: 44,084
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Loki View Post
It's got one of the worst first paragraphs in all of fantasy, but yes, it gets better.
IIRC the first chapter has the phrase “His hearts as full of larceny as the oceans full of fish-piss”

And that’s artistry, that is.
Reply With Quote
  #12225  
Old 02-11-2018, 02:58 PM
Karzac's Avatar
Karzac Karzac is online now
Dinger!
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 10,606
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Solitayre View Post
I will never not say that Lies' first and second chapter needed to be switched.
I was about to say this.
Reply With Quote
  #12226  
Old 02-12-2018, 07:55 AM
masterthes's Avatar
masterthes masterthes is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 725
Default

Also going to be reading Dracula Cha-Cha-Cha by Kim Newman
Reply With Quote
  #12227  
Old 02-13-2018, 01:26 PM
masterthes's Avatar
masterthes masterthes is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 725
Default

Giles Goat Boy by John Barth. Loved the Sot-Weed Factor from a few years back. Hopefully, this will be just as good
Reply With Quote
  #12228  
Old 02-13-2018, 01:31 PM
Octopus Prime's Avatar
Octopus Prime Octopus Prime is online now
Mystery Contraption
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: The Great White North
Posts: 44,084
Default

Re-reading Mistborn because I was kind of indifferent to the last few books I read and needed something to bolster my average for the year. Still very much a fan.

Also, I kind of hope the book never successfully gets turned into a movie because I have such a specific mental image of all the characters, and at least one of them would 1000% not happen and I don’t know if I could take that heartbreak.
Reply With Quote
  #12229  
Old 02-15-2018, 07:36 AM
masterthes's Avatar
masterthes masterthes is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 725
Default

The Barth was a bust, so now I'm reading The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13 3/4 by Sue Townsend. Seems like it could be a fun read
Reply With Quote
  #12230  
Old 02-15-2018, 09:01 AM
JBear's Avatar
JBear JBear is offline
Bertolli?!?...
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Fredericton, NB, Canada
Posts: 11,210
Default

I've enjoyed all of the Adrian Mole books that I've read. They were indeed fun reads.
Reply With Quote
  #12231  
Old 02-15-2018, 02:21 PM
masterthes's Avatar
masterthes masterthes is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 725
Default

Quick too. Moving on to the second book now, The Growing Pains of Adrian Mole

Last edited by masterthes; 02-15-2018 at 03:37 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #12232  
Old 02-16-2018, 02:27 PM
masterthes's Avatar
masterthes masterthes is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 725
Default

Getting back to some genre fiction with Kraken by China Mieville. I fell in love with Perdido Street Station years ago. Hope this will get a similar reaction
Reply With Quote
  #12233  
Old 02-16-2018, 04:50 PM
FelixSH's Avatar
FelixSH FelixSH is offline
Child of the Sun and Sky
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 815
Default

I read We, by Jewgeni Samjatin, first published in 1924. It might by, aside from The Iron Heel the first actual dystopian novel. It is also the book that inspired and greatly influenced Orwells 1984.

The main plot is basically the same. The setting is a totalitarian state,
where everyone is watched all the time, and all the time of a day is planned out for everyone. Peoples names are a letter with a number added and the flats have walls of glass. The first-person protagonist meets a woman who rebels against the system and he gets drawn into that. They kiss and have sex, and all the stuff. At the end they are captured and the will of the protagonist is broken.

That said, 1984 is not a simple copy, as it draws a way darker and more thought out picture of the society. A big reason seems to be that Winston from the getgo suffers under the horrible system, while We's protagonist is completely brainwashed. Also, the writing style is strangely flowery, using a whole lot of metaphors and analogies (used by the first-person protagenist),
which just reads strange, considering that this society has been in place for hundreds of years. One would guess that such a society would be capable of teaching its citizens a clear way of speaking and thinking. Here alone Orwell goes way deeper, in how he imagines such a state to pervert the language.

Interesting are the biblical references. Everyone lives in one giant city,
the One State, under the rule of the Benefactor. The protagonist once meets the Benefactor, who is sort of made up of light, and talks about everyone becoming happy as soon as they remove their phantasy (basically their free will). The city has a wall, and noone is allowed to leave, with wildlive outside,
which makes the city basically Eden. And it seems that the citizens are all Christians, I guess?

Also interesting, at the end of the book scientists find the phantasy-center of the brain, which makes it very easy to remove that part, making the citizens "perfect". That part seems to be the actual inspiration behind that part of the Simpson Halloween special, where Homer travels back in time with his toaster and comes back into a world controled by Flanders. The removing of the phantasy-center of the brain reminded me a lot of the removing of the brain operation in that episode. I always thought it was based on 1984, because of that screen in the house, but having it as a combination of 1984 and We makes more sense.


To be honest, I find it mainly interesting in an academic sense, to see where the Dystopia started. 1984, and to a certain degree Brave New World, explore the topics of We more in depths and are, imo, better written.
Reply With Quote
  #12234  
Old 02-16-2018, 07:00 PM
Matchstick's Avatar
Matchstick Matchstick is offline
Nonplussed
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Skullcrusher Mountain
Posts: 7,438
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by masterthes View Post
Getting back to some genre fiction with Kraken by China Mieville. I fell in love with Perdido Street Station years ago. Hope this will get a similar reaction
Hopefully, you'll dig it. I totally loved Perdido, and I thought Kraken was excellent.
Reply With Quote
  #12235  
Old 02-16-2018, 07:05 PM
taosterman's Avatar
taosterman taosterman is online now
It's dog eat dog
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: A2
Posts: 9,996
Default

The Adrian Mole books are great, though they get more depressing as he ages into a grown man and you realize his behavior isn't youthful naivete but rather the full-on Dunning-Kruger effect in action.
Reply With Quote
  #12236  
Old 02-18-2018, 05:53 PM
masterthes's Avatar
masterthes masterthes is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 725
Default

I couldn't get into Kraken. I may try again some time in the future

Anyway, years ago I read Shogun by James Clavell, which I liked, so now, I'm going to give the next book Tai-Pan a go
Reply With Quote
  #12237  
Old Yesterday, 12:54 PM
Doctor Nerd's Avatar
Doctor Nerd Doctor Nerd is online now
Tell me about your mother
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 598
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by masterthes View Post
I couldn't get into Kraken. I may try again some time in the future

Anyway, years ago I read Shogun by James Clavell, which I liked, so now, I'm going to give the next book Tai-Pan a go
I recommend checking out the Scar if you want some more of that Perdido flavor (I ended up liking it more than PSS). It takes place in the same universe, just on the outer reaches of the world.
Reply With Quote
  #12238  
Old Today, 07:50 AM
masterthes's Avatar
masterthes masterthes is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 725
Default

yeah, The Scar is definitely on my radar
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
books , calorie mate reads this , fear of new threads , octo does not do research , reading time , take a look its in a book

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 04:33 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Your posts ©you, 2007