Have you ever intentionally avoided reading a top 10 fantasy book? If so why?

Andrew.J

Hired Nicomo Cosca, famed soldier of fortune
#61
Have read most of those...


1. ASoIaF - Great series, brought me back to reading fantasy when the TV series came out. Did not watch the TV series until just now.

2. Kingkiller Chronicles - Read it, liked it, waiting for the next one.

3. The First Law - Read it, liked it, but not a great lot

4. LotR - Read that one a few times over the last 30 or so years.

5. The Magicians - Have not read this one, as I was not really aware of it so far. Have now watched the first few episodes as it was one of the few series available on Amazon prime that seemed interesting. Might pick up the books, but am not very eager to do it.

6. Discworld - Read maybe the first 15 books or so, might continue at some point in time. Like the kind of humor a lot.

7. Gentlemen Bastards - Read the first one, did not like it at all, because the heroes are such incredibly goddamn fantastic Mary Sues. Very overrated IMO.

8. The Stormlight Archive - Have not read this, as I did not feel like starting another 20-book series that will likely take 15 years to complete...

9. The Farseer - Read all 9 books of the first 3 series, might continue with the new ones.

10. MBotF - read the first book, it somehow did not float my boat. Might give it another chance as everybody keeps telling me I am horribly wrong. Hmm.
Have you read the First Law standalones as well? That's when I started really enjoying the series.
 

Anti_Quated

Journeyed there and back again
#62
Name of the Wind. The prose, from what I understand, should be the biggest hook of all to me as a reader, and yet, the consistent mention of a self-aggrandising, egocentric and awfully conceited narrator makes me extremely reluctant to go anywhere near it. That and old mate is likely to pull a GRRM and never finish the bloody thing. Fool me once.
 

Maark Abbott

Journeyed there and back again
#63
Name of the Wind. The prose, from what I understand, should be the biggest hook of all to me as a reader, and yet, the consistent mention of a self-aggrandising, egocentric and awfully conceited narrator makes me extremely reluctant to go anywhere near it. That and old mate is likely to pull a GRRM and never finish the bloody thing. Fool me once.
The prose is average, at best. I'd guess that it's hyped up to the degree that it is to cover the fact that there's a very thin plot and the main character is a huge Mary Sue.
 

Darwin

Journeyed there and back again
#64
You should still read it, despite the failure of the 3rd book to materialize and the protagonist's lack of humility. It's a terribly flawed series in many ways (Denna, demonic sex ed, etc.), but it's also an exceptional series in many ways. The magic systems and the magical pedagogy are among the best. You probably won't love it entirely, but that also makes the lack of a 3rd book less problematic.

As an author, you should definitely read it. There's a lot of things to learn from, both good and bad.
 
Last edited:

Peat

Journeyed there and back again
#65
You should still read it, despite the failure of the 3rd book to materialize and the protagonist's lack of humility. It's a terribly flawed series in many ways (Denna, demonic sex ed, etc.), but it's also an exceptional series in many ways. The magic systems and the magical pedagogy are among the best. You probably won't love it entirely, but that also makes the lack of a 3rd book less problematic.

As an author, you should definitely read it. There's a lot of things to learn from, both good and bad.
But its boring! Or at least it is so far. If I want to read magic systems, I'll crack open my White Wolf books or look for some Aleister Crowley on Amazon.
 

Peat

Journeyed there and back again
#67
I didn't think so. A few of the scenes are among my all time favorites. Kvothe's admissions interview, his second class with Hemme, his talent trial in the Eolian, etc.
I haven't even got that far. I spent 20 pages getting slowly into it, 40 pages mildly entertained but definitely wanting a hook, and 20 pages impatiently waiting for the entertainment to begin. I can see how some people like it but for those who are put off by what they hear... well, actually most of what you hear you have to get a long way in for it seems, but some of the concerns are reflected right away and I think most people are right in their gut instinct.
 

Bill Door

Listens to The Unbeliever whine about life
#69
Hmmm, lemme look through this list.

1. Game of Thrones: Well, I read this years ago due the hype and convinced myself that I like it, but if it has been intrdocued to me by this group I'd say no because it's literally about a game of thrones, and that couldn't possibly bore me. Pleas there's no magic.

2. The Name of the Wind: Sometimes I feel like I've learned nothing. Fell into the hype, and one page in I knew this wasn't for me.

3. The Blade Itself: Read a Joe Abercrombie book before and I had to skip most of the middle to tolerate it, so I'm obviously not mouthing this.

4. Lord of the Rings: I read the first and second book because I fell into the hype, if I was looking into them today I'd know that they're not for me because there's waaaaaaay too much world building!

5. the magicins: eh, could interesting, more open to it now that I'm open to more young adult.

6. Discworld: Tried reading a couple books. Each and every single joke flew over my head. I'm not just saying that I didn't find it funny, I flat out didn't realize when a joke was ever being told.

7. Gentelman Bastards: first book on the list that's on my to read list!

8. the Way of kings: Brandon Sanderson is heavy on world building, so of course not.

9. Assassin's Apprentice: Um...maybe? I don't know.

10. Gardens of The Moon: You guys gave me very good reasons why it's not for me.

11. American Gods: it's on my to-read list, but I don't see myself ever actually touching it.

12. A Wizard of Earthsea: WAAAAAAY too old.

13. Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrel: Juesus, It combines Tolkien and Jane Austin? Say no more, not interested.

14. The Black Company: I read about 2 pages. Learned how much I despise terse prose!

15. Heroes Die: FInally something that I can fully agree with. One of my personal faves! Probably second after Night Angel.

16. The Prince of Thorns: Read a bit of this knowing very little going in. Was in for a very painful surprise with really unlikable characters.

17. Under Heaven: nope, not into historical fiction.

18. City of Stairs: can't remember what it is, but I knew afer doing a very small amount of research that this wasn't for me.

19. The Night Watch: Skimmed the beinning of the first book. I don't know if it's a bad translation, but there's no way in hell that I could get immersed with the wierd writing style.

20. Fafhrd and the Gray Mouse: The title really turns me off, but other than that, no idea.

21. Black sun rising: no idea.

22. the Night Circus: Isn't this literally a kids book? Just no!

23. Legend: No idea

24. the Dark Tower: Got into the hype and gave the first book a shot. Way too slow for me then, but I might be up for it one day if I get hyped again.

25. the Dresden Files:Dear god does this deserve a higher slot!

So that's over 10 books in a top 25 list where if I had not read previously before seeing this list, I wouldn't give a fair shake because I'd know that they weren't for me. God I feel like the black sheep of this board.
Are you sure fantasy is the genre for you? You seem to dislike everything. lol
 

Maark Abbott

Journeyed there and back again
#70
I haven't even got that far. I spent 20 pages getting slowly into it, 40 pages mildly entertained but definitely wanting a hook, and 20 pages impatiently waiting for the entertainment to begin. I can see how some people like it but for those who are put off by what they hear... well, actually most of what you hear you have to get a long way in for it seems, but some of the concerns are reflected right away and I think most people are right in their gut instinct.
The only truly exceptional scene was where his family dies. Everything else was just... ehhhh.
 

Darwin

Journeyed there and back again
#71
Hmmm, lemme look through this list.

1. Game of Thrones: Well, I read this years ago due the hype and convinced myself that I like it, but if it has been intrdocued to me by this group I'd say no because it's literally about a game of thrones, and that couldn't possibly bore me. Pleas there's no magic.

2. The Name of the Wind: Sometimes I feel like I've learned nothing. Fell into the hype, and one page in I knew this wasn't for me.

3. The Blade Itself: Read a Joe Abercrombie book before and I had to skip most of the middle to tolerate it, so I'm obviously not mouthing this.

4. Lord of the Rings: I read the first and second book because I fell into the hype, if I was looking into them today I'd know that they're not for me because there's waaaaaaay too much world building!

5. the magicins: eh, could interesting, more open to it now that I'm open to more young adult.

6. Discworld: Tried reading a couple books. Each and every single joke flew over my head. I'm not just saying that I didn't find it funny, I flat out didn't realize when a joke was ever being told.

7. Gentelman Bastards: first book on the list that's on my to read list!

8. the Way of kings: Brandon Sanderson is heavy on world building, so of course not.

9. Assassin's Apprentice: Um...maybe? I don't know.

10. Gardens of The Moon: You guys gave me very good reasons why it's not for me.

11. American Gods: it's on my to-read list, but I don't see myself ever actually touching it.

12. A Wizard of Earthsea: WAAAAAAY too old.

13. Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrel: Juesus, It combines Tolkien and Jane Austin? Say no more, not interested.

14. The Black Company: I read about 2 pages. Learned how much I despise terse prose!

15. Heroes Die: FInally something that I can fully agree with. One of my personal faves! Probably second after Night Angel.

16. The Prince of Thorns: Read a bit of this knowing very little going in. Was in for a very painful surprise with really unlikable characters.

17. Under Heaven: nope, not into historical fiction.

18. City of Stairs: can't remember what it is, but I knew afer doing a very small amount of research that this wasn't for me.

19. The Night Watch: Skimmed the beinning of the first book. I don't know if it's a bad translation, but there's no way in hell that I could get immersed with the wierd writing style.

20. Fafhrd and the Gray Mouse: The title really turns me off, but other than that, no idea.

21. Black sun rising: no idea.

22. the Night Circus: Isn't this literally a kids book? Just no!

23. Legend: No idea

24. the Dark Tower: Got into the hype and gave the first book a shot. Way too slow for me then, but I might be up for it one day if I get hyped again.

25. the Dresden Files:Dear god does this deserve a higher slot!

So that's over 10 books in a top 25 list where if I had not read previously before seeing this list, I wouldn't give a fair shake because I'd know that they weren't for me. God I feel like the black sheep of this board.
Is it possible that your preferred reading style just isn't compatible with certain writing styles? Speed eating competitions typically don't use food that requires a lot of knife work. I typically dislike books that require careful, slow reading of every sentence, because I get frustrated at slow parts of the plot. I suspect that if I expected to read much faster than I typically do, as fast as you choose to do, many of the more manageable works would become unmanageable.
 

Derk of Derkholm

Journeyed there and back again
#73
Are you sure fantasy is the genre for you? You seem to dislike everything. lol
Maybe the problem is with reading books, in general?

Anyway, if I recall correctly, an average series like "Wheel of Time" would last Morte only 2 weeks anyway, due to his reading speed... :D

So not much lost...
 

Maark Abbott

Journeyed there and back again
#74
Maybe the problem is with reading books, in general?

Anyway, if I recall correctly, an average series like "Wheel of Time" would last Morte only 2 weeks anyway, due to his reading speed... :D

So not much lost...
...It took me fourteen months.
 

Derk of Derkholm

Journeyed there and back again
#75
You really should work on your speed reading skills :D
 

Maark Abbott

Journeyed there and back again
#76
You really should work on your speed reading skills :D
Hah, pass. I like to take my time, plus my usual reading time is the train to and from work (20 minutes each way), sometimes my lunch break (1 hour) and then any time I can take a bath (20 minutes).
 

MorteTorment

Knows Who John Uskglass Is
#77
Maybe the problem is with reading books, in general?

Anyway, if I recall correctly, an average series like "Wheel of Time" would last Morte only 2 weeks anyway, due to his reading speed... :D

So not much lost...
Damn, the site ate my post.

And actually it'd probably take me 10 years because I can't speed read anything I don't enjoy. I'd sit thee just looking at page like like an hour, begging for the series to stop wasting my time.
 

Blastoise

Got in a fistfight with Dresden
#78
What: Books I haven't read on that list with no intention of reading them:

The Name of the Wind
The Way of Kings

Why: Game of Thrones/ASOIF has made me much pickier about the type of fantasy (really all of fiction) I can enjoy. I simply don't find the black/white characters with the predictable ending remotely interesting (even if the journey itself is unpredictable, if I know the characters will all make it through just fine, then I have zero interest because of zero suspense).

I've tried these rated PG sunshine and rainbows series since ASOIF and I just get annoyed at how lame they are (to me). I understand that not everybody wants something dark/gritty/realistic/edgy all the time, but I am stuck there and can't seem to get past it, lol. It's been a solid 7+ years now.

Everything I have read about those two series, particularly Sanderson in general, has indicated to me that he's a PG author who writes a lot of prose without really saying anything (iirc, one of my friends told me she read WoK and there was a whole chapter just on sprites or something that didn't really contribute to the story). I actually bought the first Mistborn and Stormlight books, but gave them away as I didn't want to read another book that would just fall flat. Admittedly, I have always toed the line of almost finally reading one of his books as there are a lot of people who obviously love them and it makes me want to want to read them, but it seems like I'd just be massively disappointed once I start to research a bit to remind myself why I never read them to begin with, lol. It also seems to be the case that he can't write realistic relationships/dialogue/sex scenes. I don't need one every other page or anything, but it's a major part of the human condition, but the emotional side of a relationship and the physical part of sex. The fact that he can't (or won't, which is irrelevant practically) is a pretty glaring mark that would take me out of the story when I encounter those moments.

I really liked the First Law Trilogy (which was recommended to me here- thanks!) and the Night Angel Trilogy, which were read post and concurrently with ASOIF, respectively. The one series that has been more traditional has been the Throne of Glass series that I keep following. I enjoy the protagonist as she is at least a sort of complex, tortured type that lives in the grey, which I like, despite the rather predictable, eye rolling events sometimes.

I've also really enjoyed the ASOIF approach of writing from individual POVs each chapter. My God, the way that man can write from all genders/ages and nail what you would expect to be their thought processes. This has sneakily become something I keep searching (and partly why I enjoyed First Law so much). I've always been much more of a character guy than a story guy (don't get me wrong, I love and appreciate a good story, but without a character that I enjoy strongly, it likely won't ever be my favorite).

Another series that was recommended to me about a year ago was the Prince of Nothing series and I am about halfway through that one. It's got some good and bad so far- I will probably finish, but I've been debating on quitting at certain parts. I could see it paying off and I tend to at least try to finish the first book once I've started, particularly if I'm already haflway through. We'll see! Malazan was also recommended and is on my list.
 

rudyjuly2

Journeyed there and back again
#79
...particularly Sanderson in general, has indicated to me that he's a PG author who writes a lot of prose without really saying anything (iirc, one of my friends told me she read WoK and there was a whole chapter just on sprites or something that didn't really contribute to the story)t.
The chapter on sprites was Sanderson's way of merging in quantum physics with his magic system. I personally find the double slit experiment fascinating and so I found that chapter interesting. But I can see how others wouldn't like it.
 

Maark Abbott

Journeyed there and back again
#80
(iirc, one of my friends told me she read WoK and there was a whole chapter just on sprites or something that didn't really contribute to the story)
There are several interludes which total up to maybe 100, 150 pages or so, that are essentially the same - rambling distractions that add nothing to the story. One of the major reasons it was terrible.