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ValiantArcher
(@valiantarcher)
BC Head and G&B Mod Moderator

Posted by: @Dot
Hooray! I have been eagerly anticipating hearing what you thought of it. Giggle  

I'm glad I wrote out what I did then. Giggle I was a bit disappointed when I finished and raced to the Books thread and realised there were zero spoilered thoughts from either you or Morfinwen on it. Giggle Edit: As in I was looking forward to your thoughts too.

Spoiler
Rhythm of War
Definitely agree about Maya's testimony being a high point! Shallan dual-wielding WOULD be cool - and could probably throw a number of enemies for a loop before word got around. Giggle That said, I don't remember her doing much fighting to date and the main thing I remember about her shardblade(s) as a sword was when she handed one to Kaladin in Words of Radiance to fight the chasmfiend. And I'm glad Shallan's arc wasn't as dark as it could've been - it was definitely dark at parts, but Formless resolved so much better than it could've.
*nods about Navani and the Sibling* Yeah, that's the one of the reasons I'm not sure, even if it's possible, I want Adolin to bond Maya - I appreciate not all the major characters being Radiants. One of my other issues with Navani bonding the Sibling was that she never really listened; Navani stressed the importance of compromise, which was worked out in an interesting way with Raboniel, but Navani never really addressed the Sibling's concerns about the fabrials - she just kept putting it off. Which means the Sibling is pretty much trusting Navani with just her words, not her actions.
I think that's a good way of putting it. It wouldn't have been true for Kaladin to just suddenly be better, but he's already been through a really hard journey (for, what, is this the fourth book in a row? XD). I think it was also harder after him recognising near the start of the book that things DO get better, even when he can't see it at the moment, and then he loses that hope again after the invasion. I'm hoping that knowledge will stick harder going forward and that, along with getting the support and help he needs, he won't ever be pushed quite as far again. And that he gets a really nice break. Giggle Ooh, and gets to spend more time with his baby brother - that one scene of Kaladin building block towers for him to knock over was adorable, as was Syl's delight and pride in picking toys out for him. Giggle I'm not sure what to make of the idea that Rock and Kaladin will never see eachother again - was the implication that Rock was executed for not following his place in society? 
I was also glad that Pattern WAS helping Shallan by going behind her back, even if I didn't think about the fact he could be contacting someone besides Mraize with the cube. Blush

I'm glad to hear Jane, Unlimited was fun! You seem to have a lot of interesting titles for your book clubs, which is great - I'm always curious to hear what you'll read next. Grin

Yet such is oft the course of deeds that move the wheels of the world: small hands do them because they must, while the eyes of the great are elsewhere.

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Posted : January 24, 2021 4:01 pm
Col Klink
(@col-klink)
NarniaWeb Nut

I finished Barnaby Rudge recently. It's generally considered one of Charles Dickens's worst books, if not the worst, but I really enjoyed it. It had a lot of action and suspense and bad guys I loved to hate, though I'll freely admit I was ready for it to be over before the last chapter. I really think the time has come for it to be adapted into a miniseries or a movie or something.

Another book I finished reading for the first time is the children's fantasy, A Wish in the Dark by Christina Soontrovat. I have mixed feelings about it. On the one hand, I consider this book's story to be really great. (That's partly because it takes inspiration from a famous story but there's an enough original stuff that I think the author deserves credit for the narrative's high quality.) But I found the writing to be generally generic and uninteresting. Maybe it's just because I read a Dickens books right before. (I'm a Charles Dickens guy.) I feel like the prose in many older books (like The Chronicles of Narnia to choose a totally random example 😉 ) had a lot of more personality than today's books. A lot of modern authors-though definitely not all of them-sound exactly the same to me.

But a great story is a great story and it's better to be generic than overwrought and clunky, desperately striving and failing to be poetic. And there were some sentences I really liked. 

The eels in Pong's stomach wriggled.

Is this how a dream died? On the lips of reasonable people?

This post was modified 2 months ago 2 times by Col Klink

For better or worse-for who knows what may unfold from a chrysalis?-hope was left behind.
-The God Beneath the Sea by Leon Garfield & Edward Blishen

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Posted : January 29, 2021 8:45 am
Cleander
(@the-mad-poet)
NarniaWeb Junkie

@col-klink, Actually the BBC made a black-and-white Barnaby Rudge series, featuring Joan Hickson as Mrs. Varden, back in the 60's.... can't find it on YouTube but we do have it on DVD. It's fairly good, the acting is mostly OK though of course it's somewhat low-budget-ish. It could perhaps use a modern makeover.

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Posted : January 29, 2021 12:22 pm
Col Klink
(@col-klink)
NarniaWeb Nut

@the-mad-poetThanks for the recommendation. I don't know if I'd like it since I tend to prefer more modern miniseries (which is funny since the last thing I posted in this thread was that I preferred older books stylistically Giggle ) but it sounds like it'd be interesting to check out.

For better or worse-for who knows what may unfold from a chrysalis?-hope was left behind.
-The God Beneath the Sea by Leon Garfield & Edward Blishen

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Posted : January 29, 2021 12:29 pm
daughter of the King
(@dot)
Princess Dot Moderator
Posted by: @valiantarcher

I'm glad I wrote out what I did then. Giggle I was a bit disappointed when I finished and raced to the Books thread and realised there were zero spoilered thoughts from either you or Morfinwen on it. Giggle Edit: As in I was looking forward to your thoughts too.

In the future, I won't bother to restrain myself from posting large blocks of spoilers then. Tongue Giggle  

Spoiler
More Rhythm of War
I don't think Shallan has done a lot of fighting, but Radiant practices a lot so I'm hoping that will pay off in the future.

Yeah, you pretty much hit the nail on the head with Navani and the Sibling. Navani was just the least worst choice at the time for the Sibling to bond to someone. She forced the Sibling into it and that probably won't make for a positive relationship in the future. Which is a bit sad, because even Dalinar and the Stormfather at least kind of manage to work together.

I'm also hoping for more positive interactions between Kaladin and his family. I really didn't like his dad in this one, and I hope Kaladin either refuses to be treated like that again (calling your own kid a monster to his face?!) or they can repair the relationship to some capacity so Kaladin can get to know his little brother. He just really needs a nap.

As for Rock, I've seen some discussion from people who are way nerdier about the Cosmere than I am, and the implication may actually be Rock was sent to another world as part of his punishment. Since one of the gate/portal thingies is on their mountain. So Kaladin will probably never see him again, but us readers might see him show up in other books. Mistborn perhaps?

The House in the Cerulean Sea was a very cozy read. Nothing groundbreaking or phenomenal, or even very impressive, just good, comfy fluff. I think I described it to my brother as a curl up with a blanket and a cup of tea sort of book. The magic kids were adorable, and the adults trying to make the world a better place for them were all great.

Up next: Dear Martin by Nic Stone for YA book club. It deals with modern day racism but the reviews for it are high, so it will probably be a good but very hard read.

And for scifi book club: An Unkindness of Ghosts by Rivers Solomon. I don't know anything about this one except that it's in space.

Posted by: @valiantarcher

You seem to have a lot of interesting titles for your book clubs, which is great - I'm always curious to hear what you'll read next.

Yep, that's one of the reasons I joined - expand my horizons a bit with books and authors I haven't read before. One of the other reasons is so I have a stack of books to hand to my nephew whenever he complains he's bored because he forgot his ipad. Tongue   Although that may come back to bite me. The last stack I handed him the only one he was interested in was The Falconer and I hated the ending of that. Giggle  

Narniaweb sister to Pattertwig's Pal

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Posted : January 30, 2021 6:29 pm
ValiantArcher
(@valiantarcher)
BC Head and G&B Mod Moderator

@Dot, certainly don't restrain from large blocks of spoilered text on my account - almost all my spoilers are big blocks. Giggle

Spoiler
Rhythm of War
Good point on Radiant practicing! It does seem likely it'll pay off in the next book - assuming they make it out of Shadesmar (though I suppose they could fight there too).

Yeah, we'll see. But in order to really start gaining the Sibling's trust, I think Navani is going to have to immediately start work on addressing the fabrial concern - and I don't see that being very high-priority in the next book.

I think Lirin wearing the shash mark was a beginning to repairing his relationship with Kaladin, but they've got a long ways to go. The good news is that I think they both recognise it and I think they're starting to realise why the other acts the way he does. So I'm hopeful they'll figure a way forward, especially with Hesina and Orodom (?) as buffers/common people they love.

OH. If I knew, I did not at all remember that there was a gateway on Rock's mountain. But that would make sense, and it would be great to see Rock again, even if Kaladin doesn't. Sad


Good to know on The House in the Cerulean Sea! Comfy fluff can be just what is needed at times. And very good reasons for joining the book club(s). Giggle I guess I have an inherent distrust of book club recommendations, probably because whenever I've seen them they tend to be either a) incredibly popular book of the moment, b) suspiciously likely to push an agenda, or c) not interesting. Blush So I'm glad it's working for you (and maybe I should rethink my biases)!

I am still working through the Poe stories; I just finished "The Purloined Letter" - until I started this book, I hadn't realised it was written by him. This marks the second story that I saw adapted on Wishbone years back and had mistakenly accredited to Arthur Conan Doyle as a Sherlock Holmes story. Tongue Giggle

Yet such is oft the course of deeds that move the wheels of the world: small hands do them because they must, while the eyes of the great are elsewhere.

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Posted : January 30, 2021 8:31 pm
fantasia
(@fantasia)
Member Admin

I finished up Dune a couple weeks ago but have failed to come in here and report on it. I absolutely flew through it this time around and enjoyed it a lot more than the first time. It's kind of funny though because it's such a psychological book that by the time Frank Herbert got to the climatic ending, it was like....nothing. So if I have a criticism of the book, that would be it... the extremely rushed ending.

Years ago when I read Dune for the first time, I remember attempting to read Dune Messiah afterwards and I just COULD NOT DO IT. As I enjoyed Dune much more this time around, I'm wondering if I could read the sequel now?

*ponders what to read next* Confused  

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Posted : January 31, 2021 1:21 pm
johobbit liked
Col Klink
(@col-klink)
NarniaWeb Nut

@valiantarcher I haven't participated in any book clubs myself because I like to pick books out for myself and I don't think it's likely that a group of people and myself would have complementary tastes. But I was interested in your description of what kind of books get read in those clubs and your perspective on that. Again, I'm not a good person to say whether your perspective is right or wrong but I found it interesting.

For better or worse-for who knows what may unfold from a chrysalis?-hope was left behind.
-The God Beneath the Sea by Leon Garfield & Edward Blishen

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Posted : January 31, 2021 4:22 pm
shastastwin
(@shastastwin)
Member Moderator Emeritus
Posted by: @valiantarcher

stwin, hope Dark Disciple is more rewarding for you!

 

I finally finished it last night. It was enjoyable, and I could visualize the animation and voices from the show matching the scenes, but I had a hard time getting sucked into it the way I wanted. Up next is the third of Alan Gordon's Fools' Guild mysteries, A Death in the Venetian Quarter. I remember being upset that he left the second book on a bit of a cliffhanger, so I think I may breeze through this one a bit faster. 

If you're not familiar with the series, the main character is Feste from Shakespeare's Twelfth Night, now reimagined as a member of a secret society of fools and jesters who do their best to keep the world from burning itself to the ground. In the first book, the appropriately named Thirteenth Night, Feste must investigate the death of the Duke of Orsino. They're set in the early thirteenth century, and they are very enjoyable so far.

"All the world will be your enemy, Prince with a Thousand Enemies. And when they catch you, they will kill you. But first they must catch you..."
Inexhaustible Inspiration

6689 posts from forum 1.0

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Posted : January 31, 2021 6:52 pm
SnowAngel
(@snowangel)
Maiden of Monday Madness Moderator
Posted by: @valiantarcher

All the best with catching up, SA! And I guess time will tell on the length. Giggle

I still haven't read them. Sad Maybe I need fewer library books. Shocked  I have however been listening to the Stories Are Soul Food podcast and enjoying it. Smile  

I finished You're Not Enough (And That's Okay) by Allie Beth Stuckey and it was quite good, the length seemed to be just right for the content. It's a very timely book and I highly recommend it.

I also finished Fortitude by Dan Crenshaw, it was just okay. The first couple chapters were the most interesting, after that he got into stoicism. D\'oh  

I am now reading The Hunt For Red October by Tom Clancy, Guns of the Lion by Douglas Bond, and Flyover Nation by Dana Loesch. I picked these three because they have to be returned to the library in a couple weeks. 

SnowAngel


"Live your risk." - Buck Sexton

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Posted : February 1, 2021 10:14 pm
Col Klink
(@col-klink)
NarniaWeb Nut

I've been reading the later books in the Miss Bianca series by Margery Sharp. Previously I'd only read the first four and the last book, Bernard Into Battle. I'd been under the impression that quality of the series declined as it went on, judging by the quality of the final installment. But it was really struck by how fast it started going downhill after Miss Bianca in the Salt Mines. (In fact, there's an argument to be made that it started going downhill with that book.) It seems like Margery Sharp had a lot of ideas for expanding on the world of The Rescuers/Miss Bianca but she didn't have good ideas for plots and just kept writing the series because it was popular.

Miss Bianca in the Orient some really good characters but a weirdly boring, undramatic story. Everything is so easy for the heroes, there's hardly any suspense. (To be fair, there were some plot points in the early books that were ridiculously convenient but they weren't this frequent.) Most of Miss Bianca in the Antarctic is great, much better than the Orient. But the resolution is so crazy and out of nowhere...I'm not sure what to say about it. ROFL  And I'm really not sure what the heroes accomplished in Bernard the Brave. It really seems like the kidnapping victim was saved by herself and the supporting characters. The title character was pretty much irrelevant. Giggle To a lesser extent, the conflict of Miss Bianca and the Bridesmaid seems like it would have been resolved eventually without the help of the heroes, though it would have taken longer and been worse for the victim character.

I am grateful I got to read the whole series though since I consider the first three or four books to be underrated gems. I recommend people check those out at least.

For better or worse-for who knows what may unfold from a chrysalis?-hope was left behind.
-The God Beneath the Sea by Leon Garfield & Edward Blishen

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Posted : February 6, 2021 7:31 pm
daughter of the King
(@dot)
Princess Dot Moderator
Posted by: @valiantarcher

I guess I have an inherent distrust of book club recommendations, probably because whenever I've seen them they tend to be either a) incredibly popular book of the moment, b) suspiciously likely to push an agenda, or c) not interesting.

I did get a bit lucky with the groups I've found. They're hosted through an indie bookstore and while they generally have the newest shiny books they also stock old stuff if the book clubs request it. We also vote on what to read the next year and since YA and SFF can contain multiple sub-genres we read a wide variety. And we tend to do books that are at least a year old so if not enough copies are at the library people can buy the paperback instead of the hardcover. Also both groups consist almost entirely of a bunch of nerds who just really like reading and we're often giving each other recommendations. Giggle Nerd  

Dear Martin by Nic Stone for YA club was a hard read, but also a very fast one that I could not put down. An Unkindness of Ghosts by Rivers Solomon for SFF club was also a hard read (it's a dismal combination of The Expanse series and the Snowpiercer movie), but it was actually very impressive for a debut novel. The spaceship was very cool, but I disliked the ending so that it soured it a bit.

Up next: A Wizard's Guide to Defensive Baking by T. Kingfisher for YA. The main character's magic only works on baked goods and I love that as a concept so I'm definitely looking forward to this one. Sabriel by Garth Nix for SFF, which has been on my reading list for quite awhile so that's another one I'm looking forward to. But first, Shadow and Bone and the rest of that series by Leigh Bardugo because the Netflix show is happening soon and I've only read the Six of Crows duology so I feel the need catch up. Giggle  

Narniaweb sister to Pattertwig's Pal

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Posted : February 26, 2021 3:34 pm
SnowAngel
(@snowangel)
Maiden of Monday Madness Moderator

I've made it up to chapter 8 in The Silent Bells, there is a lot going on in that story. Chapter 12 arrived yesterday, I think only one sibling saw it come in. Hmmm   I'm planning to read two more chapters this coming weekend after I finish a couple of library books.

I had to send the Douglas Bond books back to the library, once again I couldn't get all of my library books read before they had to go back. So I will have get them again in a few months.

In February I read...

  • The Hunt for Red October by Tom Clancy - I really enjoyed rereading this one.
  • The Clockwork Dragon by James R. Hannibal
  • Network of Deceit by Tom Threadgill - Really enjoyed it, it was a good sequel to Collision of Lies.
  • Flyover Nation by Dana Loesch 
  • When Twilight Breaks by Sarah Sundin - Not impressed.
  • and a handful of short kids books.

I have already read over 5,000 pages this year including two medium length books this month. Love   I am so happy that I am ahead on my reading goal for the year, I usually hit a low page count/reading time month at some point in the spring. 

Over the weekend I read Kings Falling (The Book of the Wars #2) by Ronie Kendig. I had been waiting to read Kings Falling until the last book in the trilogy, Soul Raging, was available at the library. I didn't care for the character development or Ronie's awkward substituting for foul words. I have started Soul Raging, but I'm not really liking it and I am glad it's the end of the series. 

In addition to Soul Raging I'm now reading Fear and Faith by Trillia J. Newbell and The Good Assassin by Stephen Talty. I am really enjoying The Good Assassin, it's very well written.

SnowAngel


"Live your risk." - Buck Sexton

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Posted : March 9, 2021 9:18 pm
daughter of the King
(@dot)
Princess Dot Moderator

A Wizard's Guide to Defensive Baking is a delightfully fun book. It does veer toward some tough subject matter but when the story starts with a body in a bakery that is to be expected. Still, it was mostly just wild, silly fun. A good comparison would be the Tiffany Aching series by Terry Pratchett, except of course without the unique Pratchett style. Giggle  

Sabriel was a bit of a disappointment. It's not a bad book, but it is rather slow and meandering at times while also running through the action quickly without developing the characters much. I also just really didn't like the romance. I've already got the sequel on my to-read list though because the premise and world are really great.

The first two books in the Shadow and Bone series are okay. Basically, it is solid YA fantasy, but Six of Crows is just so much better. If you plan on reading all of Leigh Bardugo's Grishaverse definitely read the trilogy first.

Up next: third in the Shadow and Bone trilogy as well as the Six of Crows duology because I still want to read both before the Netflix series comes out. And then for YA Ruby Red by Kerstin Geir, and translated by Anthea Bell. Based on the synopsis it's romance while time-traveling. Could be fun. And then for SFF we're reading Tooth and Claw by Jo Walton. Supposedly it is very reminiscent of a Victorian novel, except that everyone is a dragon.

Narniaweb sister to Pattertwig's Pal

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Posted : March 24, 2021 10:20 pm
fantasia
(@fantasia)
Member Admin

I see that the Penderwicks books were discussed years and years ago and I missed out. Giggle The kids and I are currently reading through the first book. What fun! They're getting quite a kick out of it. 

Are the other books worth reading too? Or just the first? 

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Posted : March 27, 2021 9:07 pm
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