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Literature / Re: Yearly Reading Targets 2023
« Last post by The P on January 24, 2024, 01:38:19 pm »
Better late than never. (31)

Gideon the Ninth: (for book club, my pick) most excellent, probably the best book I read in 2023
The Library at Mount Char: it was ok, not as unique or original as I'd hoped it would be
Black Stone Heart: eh, also ok, nothing special
Ninth House: I enjoyed this one pretty well, one of the better books this year
Popisho: (for book club) it sucks, magical realism with maybe a couple neat ideas, but pointless and pretentious
Age of Ash: pretty decent start to a trilogy, kinda slow start, but picked up at the end
Good Omens: (for book club) perfectly fine, but I don't understand the acclaim, maybe too silly and disjointed
Daughter of Redwinter: not as good as his other trilogy, but enjoyable enough to keep going
Braiding Sweetgrass: (for book club) trash nonfiction written by a native american who seems to herself have bought into the noble savage trope.  everyone seems to love it.
The Way of Edan: a decent start to a trilogy by a self-published youtuber, better than it should be
The King of Attolia: more of the best YA fantasy series no one's heard about
Blade of Dream: sequel to Age of Ash, even better than the first, very much looking forward to the final book
Tress of the Emerald Sea: (for book club) the best Sanderson I've read.
Fourth Wing: (for book club) straight garbage, don't waste your time.
The Prophet of Edan: second in the trilogy, better than the first
A Conspiracy of Kings: continues to be the best YA fantasy
Brother: (for book club) pointless story about backwoods incestuous murdering family, why does it exist?
Dark Matter: fun scifi thriller, but nothing special
Hell Bent: sequel to Ninth House, not quite as good as the first, but still enjoyable
The Mermaid's Tale: surprisingly good, unique fantasy setting, I'd read more by the author
Thick as Thieves: seems like more of an aside from the general Thief story/setting, but still great YA fantasy
Saevus Corax Deals with the Dead: (for book club, my pick) it's K. J. Parker, of course it's excellent

In addition to actual books, I read all of the manga Berserk: it's ok some really enjoyable arcs in there, but also some pretty dull points.  unfortunate it's unfinished.

Also volumes 1-23 of One Piece: starts a little slow, and just gets better and better.
Literature / Yearly Reading Targets 2024
« Last post by Wilshire on January 11, 2024, 08:00:43 pm »
Another year. Since this is the place i most consistently write down my book notes I will keep the annual post going.
Literature / Re: Yearly Reading Targets 2023
« Last post by Wilshire on November 14, 2023, 06:52:29 pm »
Blade of Tyshalle by Matthew Stover (2)
Caine Black Knife by Matthew Stover (3)
Caine's Law by Matthew Stover (4)

Acts of Caine, on a reread, is very good. Its been a few years, I have forgotten many things, and so was still surprised by some things that happened. Each book does a great job at being different than the others, which makes it very readable. Its definitely one of my favorite series. Even the last book, which seems kind of bizarre the first time, stood out as more entertaining than it felt initially.

Sleight of Shadows by Kat Howard (5)
Not great. The first book was an entertaining read by a new author, but I felt like this sequel didn't hold up. The writing is mostly lackluster, and the pacing is completely wrong, with too much happening in too short a time to be believable. Howard writes some really fun Magic though, mysterious and magical  in the style of McKillip, which was enough to carry the first book but not enough for the sequel. I hope she writes more, she could be really fun to read if she learns to write better.

Bloodline by Will Wight (6)
Reaper by Will Wight (7)
Dreadgod by Will Wight ( 8 )
Waybound by Will Wight (9)

Welp, I finished Cradle. I reread Bloodline and then moved on to Reaper, Dreadgod, and Waybound all in a row. It was ... fine. I feel like Wight's writing skills are definitely maxed out with this series. He tries to do some things in these latter books that just don't really work great. The core cast that was around from the start had satisfactory, if entirely predictable, story arcs. The characters added later on in the series are just kind of goofy, with abrupt starts/stops before disappearing.
I preferred the first several books I think, up through the Uncrowned King tournament, which is like 6 books in or something? It kind of stagnates after that.
But its entertaining enough for what it is.

Eragon (10)

I'm rereading Inheritance by Paolini, because a new book was published. I'm primarily interested to see if the writing is improved after the huge gap, presumably after some actual writing classes, and secondly I'm wondering if its generally as bad as the internet says it is. Finished Eragon so far. Its... fine? Feels like pretty standard YA fiction. The writing is pretty basic, buts I've absolutely read worse books. Names, places, and plots are borrowed very heavily from the usual suspects, but I dont find it offensive. I like the depiction of dragons, and hopefully nostalgia will carry me through the rest.

The Wolf of Oren-Yaro by V. S. Villoso (11)

Unremarkable. Not much else to say. Prose is bland, plot is simple, characters are flat, world building is uninspired. It's probably supposed to be about love and betrayal, coming of age and truth bleeding the wonder of youth from the world. Maybe it is, but there's no reason to spend any time reading it as you can get the same story in about any other fantasy book you could pick off the shelf.
The Thousandfold Thought / Re: TTT - First US Overlook Edition
« Last post by Wilshire on August 14, 2023, 07:22:45 pm »
That is correct. In classic Overlook fashion, they were inconsistent. TTT does not have "First Edition" printed on the publisher page, unlike the others. Also, AFAIK Overlook only ever did 1 printing of TTT in hardback.
The Thousandfold Thought / TTT - First US Overlook Edition
« Last post by nicolas.secondapocalypse on July 26, 2023, 06:13:18 am »
Hi everyone

I hope someone is still around here to answer my question - don't worry, it's not about where R. Scott Bakker is and when a new book is coming out. :-)

I'm planning to revisit all the books, and as a sort of ritual I was looking at all my US Overlook Hardback first editions. I'm pretty sure I sought out and purchased all the true first editions back in the day. I might (probably) have forgotten about an oddity amongst all of them, namely TTT.

All of them actively mentioned First Edition, except for TTT. Can someone confirm this for me? I'll add a (shitty, but serviceable) picture of the publisher page, to double check. If this one might have slipped through the cracks, could someone upload the publisher page of the first true edition US Overlook so I can look for the right one?

General Earwa / Re: How do the Sranc reproduce?
« Last post by The P on July 21, 2023, 05:12:55 pm »
Concerning superficially similar sex organs, I assume something going on like with the spotted hyena: females have a "pseudo-penis" so they appear to be male, but there is still sexual reproduction.
General Earwa / Re: How do the Sranc reproduce?
« Last post by Wilshire on June 07, 2023, 06:12:15 pm »
Yeah check the Appendix for some of the information gaps there. They appear to be gendered, though androgynous other than sex organs. Pregnant sranc on the fields of battle.

TUC also implies evolution for the millions of sranc that come from the coasts to overwhlem TGO near the end of TUC, which basically demands more/less traditional sexual reproduction... insofar as "IRL genetics" apply  at all in Earwaverse.

There should be plenty of sranc without actual/direct/first-person knowledge of the Inchoroi. However there does seem to be some kind of instinctual knowledge, or memetic mechanism, that at the very least elicits predictable responses... ie despite having no information about the inchoroi, they still react in ways that suggest they do whenever the wild sranc happen to run into their creators.
The Unholy Consult / Re: How big is the Heron Spear?
« Last post by Wilshire on June 07, 2023, 06:06:51 pm »
But why is Sil's shield so big? Are you suggesting that the shield is a relic from the days when the Inchoroi were huge, but the Heron Spear is more recent (or was shrunk down from a previously bigger weapon)?
That still doesn't explain how Aurang was able to wrestle the Tall and win.
Maybe just that the Tall have grown, substantially, by the time we see them? A Tall at Arkfall was 2-3 meters, whereas in TUC they are like 5?

I don't think anything in the text contradicts the idea that it is a lot larger than we assume: it was stolen by Seswatha and Nau-Cayûti together -- perhaps this is the reason Seswatha needed Nau-Cayûti to come with him -- and was transported in Anaxophus' chariot, so it could actually be ~20 ft long.
The exact dimensions are never really given, so yes it could be any/all explanations.

Then again there is nothing to contradict the idea of the spear being like a laser pointer, other than the fact that it is a silly image.
This provides the primary drawback of the type of obfuscation Bakker loves - you can end up in weird places, like a fearsome weapon being a toothpick.
General Earwa / Re: How do the Sranc reproduce?
« Last post by Madness on May 30, 2023, 04:52:13 pm »
Interesting that you mention this considering Cursed Armada's most recent video:

Moenghus, apparently, was captured by the Utemot, *alive*, after having spent weeks with them and had learned some rudiments of their developing "Ork" language during his captivity. Lol, kind of like Kellhus at Atrithau but Moenghus the Elder conditioned Sranc, not men. It suggests there are absolutely Sranc out there that are "native" without the No-God.

As to your question, TTT Glossary outright says there are pregnant females fighting in the First Apocalypse.
General Misc. / Re: Quotes
« Last post by sciborg2 on May 19, 2023, 06:16:51 pm »
"Touched by a masterpiece, a person begins to hear in himself that same call for truth that prompted the artist to the creative act"

Andrey Tarkovsky. Sculpting in Time.
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