Author Topic: What are you reading, part 3  (Read 105510 times)

Silk

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Re: What are you reading, part 3
« Reply #1500 on: August 13, 2010, 12:58:57 AM »
The ending was well done enough.  It certainly made much more sense by the time I'd finished the book.

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Re: What are you reading, part 3
« Reply #1501 on: August 13, 2010, 03:16:16 AM »
Just finished Proven Guilty, the 8th book in the Dresden Files. Moving on to White Night in a few minutes. I'm still reading Gardens of the Moon, but I've shifted that into my "work book" slot (which is the book I bring to work and read during my breaks), at least until I finish the Dresden Files. The series is too awesome and compelling for me to put down, and honestly, knowing the next one is waiting there for me to start makes picking up Erikson to feel more like a chore.
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Re: What are you reading, part 3
« Reply #1502 on: August 13, 2010, 11:30:04 PM »
Finished The Office of Shadow my Sturges.  Some good and some bad.  EBReview to come.

Picking up Tome of the Undergates by Sykes so I can get a review out on it before it gets released in September.   Really looking forward to this one.
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Silk

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Re: What are you reading, part 3
« Reply #1503 on: August 14, 2010, 06:09:02 AM »
Finished Blake Charlton's Spellwright and Charles Stross's Glasshouse. Uh, I should probably stop reading and do something constructive now...

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Re: What are you reading, part 3
« Reply #1504 on: August 16, 2010, 02:02:10 AM »
I'm definitely not doing anything productive, but hey, summer only lasts a bit longer! I need to read read read!

And what have I been reading? A crapload of Dresden. I found my copies of Fool Moon and Grave Peril (which I had previously thought vanished into aether), so I finished those yesterday. I read Summer Knight today, and I will probably start Death Masks momentarily...
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Re: What are you reading, part 3
« Reply #1505 on: August 16, 2010, 02:45:39 PM »
I finished up the WoK ARC yesterday. It was fantastic!
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Re: What are you reading, part 3
« Reply #1506 on: August 16, 2010, 03:34:09 PM »
Just finished Turn Coat, by Jim Butcher. Now, with all due respect to Elitist Book Reviews... I think they're dead wrong on their review of this book. It was amazing, one of the best I've read in the series. Now, it may be that I misunderstood their meaning behind the term, but I saw no indication whatsoever of a "magic reset button". What changes I saw in the characters and the story, to me, were the result of character development in some ways regressive, yes, but natural and honestly fitting with the events of the story.

I loved it. I can't wait to get my hands on a copy of Changes - which isn't out in paperback, so I can't buy it yet due to my rule of buying each book in a series in the same format. I have the others in paperback, so I must have all of them in paperback. If it compares to the other books in The Dresden Files, it would definitely be worth the price of hardcover, but then my OCD would flare up when it didn't look right on my bookshelf.
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Re: What are you reading, part 3
« Reply #1507 on: August 16, 2010, 04:41:01 PM »
Reasons I disliked Turn Coat:
1) The guy pulling the strings was absurdly easy to spot.
2) The events from the prior novel, which involved one of the main characters getting nearly shot to death, are mentioned in passing.  Once.  In a "Hmm, that was unfortunate" kind of way.  What's the point of grievously injuring a main character if there are no tangible effects on the main characters.
3) Harry's ability to always "throw every last bit of emotion" into his magic to overcome the baddie.
4) Being that this was the half-way mark in the series, I felt it was cheap to undo several books worth of development with a casual wave of the hand.  Now we have to go through that development all over again over the course of several novels instead of having all new conflicts.  This is mainly noticed with Luccio and Thomas (this is where the magic reset button comes into play).  In addition, all the attention given to Morgan was wasted (we are going to take an under-developed character, give him some life, but not enough to actually make any difference, then get ride of the character), and as expected, was thrown out the window in Changes.
5) Murphy still pointlessly not taking up the Sword.  She wants to save everything, but won't take the one thing she knows will help her cope with the supernatural aspects that have nearly destroyed her over the past.  At this point, it's just used to have a filler-conflict that they can discuss at dramatic points in time.

There is more of course, but I feel like it isn't worth mentioning since Changes helped alleviate some of my fury over the direction of the series.  Turn Coat wasn't even close to books 7 and 8 in terms of quality and plot progression.  But hey, every series has a stinker or two.  And of course, many people felt Turn Coat was great, and who am I to judge.


@Silk - Did you find Spellwright as maddening as I did?  Such a frustrating novel.
« Last Edit: August 16, 2010, 04:51:34 PM by Bookstore Guy »
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Silk

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Re: What are you reading, part 3
« Reply #1508 on: August 16, 2010, 06:45:02 PM »
I actually had a lot of fun with Spellwright. The only part I really found frustrating was the end, which was so obviously a setup for book two that I felt it sort of failed at being anything else (like, you know, an ending). And I would have liked to see a little bit more growth from the protagonist in a couple of areas. I got the feeling that the author was sort of saving those for book two, so maybe it's another part of the same problem.

Other than that, though, I rather enjoyed it.

(Hey, the library has all the Butcher books. I should get on those.)

Shivertongue

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Re: What are you reading, part 3
« Reply #1509 on: August 17, 2010, 03:41:06 AM »
Reasons I disliked Turn Coat:
1) The guy pulling the strings was absurdly easy to spot.
2) The events from the prior novel, which involved one of the main characters getting nearly shot to death, are mentioned in passing.  Once.  In a "Hmm, that was unfortunate" kind of way.  What's the point of grievously injuring a main character if there are no tangible effects on the main characters.
3) Harry's ability to always "throw every last bit of emotion" into his magic to overcome the baddie.
4) Being that this was the half-way mark in the series, I felt it was cheap to undo several books worth of development with a casual wave of the hand.  Now we have to go through that development all over again over the course of several novels instead of having all new conflicts.  This is mainly noticed with Luccio and Thomas (this is where the magic reset button comes into play).  In addition, all the attention given to Morgan was wasted (we are going to take an under-developed character, give him some life, but not enough to actually make any difference, then get ride of the character), and as expected, was thrown out the window in Changes.
5) Murphy still pointlessly not taking up the Sword.  She wants to save everything, but won't take the one thing she knows will help her cope with the supernatural aspects that have nearly destroyed her over the past.  At this point, it's just used to have a filler-conflict that they can discuss at dramatic points in time.

There is more of course, but I feel like it isn't worth mentioning since Changes helped alleviate some of my fury over the direction of the series.  Turn Coat wasn't even close to books 7 and 8 in terms of quality and plot progression.  But hey, every series has a stinker or two.  And of course, many people felt Turn Coat was great, and who am I to judge.


Okay, having the specifics helps me make a bit more sense with that review. That's one of the downsides, I think, to spoiler-free reviews - I didn't know, going in, what the "magic reset" was, and was expecting to have been done to everything in the series. Harry back under the Doom of Damocles, Murphy not trusting him, etc. This might be why I loved it as much as I did - I was expecting something far worse, and was blown away when it didn't happen.

***Some possible spoilers below. You have been warned.***





I'll give you the first three points, but I think I have to contest the fourth and fifth. The character regression of Luccio and Thomas actually felt natural to me. What Thomas went through forced him to abandon what he'd been trying to do and give in to what he'd been repressing, and his reactions to it make a lot of sense. For Luccio, I could say the same. Not quite as traumatic (arguably) as Thomas, but it felt like a natural response to what she'd gone through. As for Morgan... seeing more of him definitely gave his final scene some incredible impact. It wouldn't have worked if we hadn't gotten to know him better, and while it would have been interesting to see what happened to him had he lived, I think it would have made the story poorer.

As for Murphy, I think it's just at this time she's not ready to give up on her career. Taking up the sword would mean, essentially, becoming a vigilante ( as I doubt they'd let her carry it around on the job), which is against the law. And Murphy has shown time and time again that she's a stickler for following the law. That's just the way I see it, and the point above, and I'm definitely not saying you were wrong or that I'm right. We just reacted to it differently (which I think is pretty cool).

I agree, though, that it doesn't match Proven Guilty or White Night, which were beyond amazing. Small Favor was good, but definitely not in the caliber of those two, or even, in my opinion, Turn Coat.

Anyway, to keep on topic... I'm slightly further in Gardens of the Moon now. It's not as complex or difficult to read as some make it seem, but it's still not as interesting either. But, since I had to get a copy of Changes from a different library, and it might be a few days before it arrives, I'm gonna make a big push to finish it.
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Re: What are you reading, part 3
« Reply #1510 on: August 18, 2010, 06:24:40 PM »
Just thought I'd say SALUTE THE DARK was awesome.  The end.
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Re: What are you reading, part 3
« Reply #1511 on: August 18, 2010, 08:37:10 PM »
Reading Ari Marmell's THE CONQUEROR'S SHADOW. He's been a staff writer for Wizards of the Coast writing manuals for games (I think...), but this his his first novel. Pretty good so far, a little different than your standard sword & sorcery. Although after all those manuals one would think his prose could be slightly less cumbersome. Alas.
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Re: What are you reading, part 3
« Reply #1512 on: August 19, 2010, 10:02:43 AM »
Finished Changes last night. Amazing. Now I'm upset that I have no more Dresden to read until Side Jobs comes out in October...

Also (finally) finished Gardens of the Moon, about ten minutes ago. Took me two years and three restarts to get through. It was good. Not great, but good. It had this annoying habit of rising into sheer awesomeness for brief periods, then suddenly shifting back in to slow and boring for long stretches. I give it a B-.

Now I'm trying to decide if I want to start Deadhouse Gates or Empire in Black and Gold...
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Silk

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Re: What are you reading, part 3
« Reply #1513 on: August 19, 2010, 09:34:58 PM »
Reading LeGuin's Left Hand of Darkness. Took me a couple chapters to get into it, but I'm there now.

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Re: What are you reading, part 3
« Reply #1514 on: August 19, 2010, 10:10:40 PM »
Left Hand of Darkness deserves it's fame, bitter-sweet throughout but it is still amazing!

@Steve how does it measure up against the series?
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