It's April 2020: What fantasy book are you reading?

Cyphon

Journeyed there and back again
#42
And I wasn't a fan of Auri lol. Never read that stand alone book.
I read the standalone and it was okay. On her own she isn't entirely interesting but I think she is one of the more interesting elements of the story because she provides one of the few mysteries. Does she have relevant power so to speak or is she really just a cracked ex student? Could she be a surprise twist in the story eventually?

A lot of that for me is what the story is missing and she at least provides a little of that spark.

I think that is actually somewhat confirmed. I'm pretty sure Rothfuss has said (or at least hinted) that "Kote" is an unreliable narrator. Doesn't mean that everything he said is BS, just that he might not be completely honest and forthright.

I'm actually okay with that. Since the only version of events we have of Kvothe's story is Kvothe's own version, it's understandable that there would be a biased 'slant' to the retelling. Kote is obviously not going to present the story in a light that makes Kvothe look like a dumbass, and he could very well over-estimate his own accomplishments, not only due to actual lies but simply because his personal opinions would color his perspective. Like the Felurian thing;
was Kvothe really such a sex-god that he managed to satisfy a fae known for being a seductress? Or is that just what Kvothe says (or even believes), while in reality Felurian is probably at a pub telling her friends about this idiotic University student who suffers from pre-mature ejaculation?

My problem is that even if Kote is an unreliable narrator and is telling a slanted version of the story, that doesn't change the fact that the story he's telling doesn't have a lot going for it.
Well the thing is there are a lot of moments where he comes out looking like a dumbass so it feels like the story should be real. I guess my thing if it isn't accurate then what the hell is the point? The story already feels mostly pointless and I think it becomes even moreso if a lot of it is a lie or exaggeration. So not only did we read a story about nothing but it was all made up nothing if you will. I can't get behind that.
 

Alucard

In the name of the Pizza Lord. Charge!
Staff member
#43
Just to jump in a bit, I liked BSC, Heroes and Red Country books well enough, and interestingly I gave them all 4 stars on GR. But when I think about it now the one book that really stands out for me is Heroes. I loved the Caul Shivers development in that one. He came from a minor character to my favorite character of Abercrombie's next to Bloody Nine.

I never really connect with Abercrombie's female characters and such was the case with Monza as well in BSC, although she was written much much better than Fero in The First Law books. However, the best thing that came out of BSC for me was Nicomo Cosca. Just a brilliant character.

The only female character of his I truly adore is Javre from Sharp Ends. I love her brashness, her craziness , her fuck everything attitude. She's hilarious as fuck. Truly a rival to Bloody Nine madness.
 

Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
#44
Just to jump in a bit, I liked BSC, Heroes and Red Country books well enough, and interestingly I gave them all 4 stars on GR. But when I think about it now the one book that really stands out for me is Heroes. I loved the Caul Shivers development in that one. He came from a minor character to my favorite character of Abercrombie's next to Bloody Nine.

I never really connect with Abercrombie's female characters and such was the case with Monza as well in BSC, although she was written much much better than Fero in The First Law books. However, the best thing that came out of BSC for me was Nicomo Cosca. Just a brilliant character.

The only female character of his I truly adore is Javre from Sharp Ends. I love her brashness, her craziness , her fuck everything attitude. She's hilarious as fuck. Truly a rival to Bloody Nine madness.

Agreed! I liked the "standalone" books of the First Law world better than the First Law trilogy itself actually. In think Abercrombie really improved as a writer when you compare for example First Law 1 with the standalones. Heroes stands out as his best book in my view. I also really liked the character of Shivers. Great character arc.
 

kenubrion

Journeyed there and back again
#45

afa

Journeyed there and back again
#46
Well the thing is there are a lot of moments where he comes out looking like a dumbass so it feels like the story should be real. I guess my thing if it isn't accurate then what the hell is the point? The story already feels mostly pointless and I think it becomes even moreso if a lot of it is a lie or exaggeration. So not only did we read a story about nothing but it was all made up nothing if you will. I can't get behind that.
I get what you mean. I suppose this is a central difficulty to overcome with any book that has an unreliable narrator. It will depend on whether it was done well enough to avoid the reader being disappointed. It would be tricky, of course. Personally, I don't think I've ever read an unreliable narrator book, but there are supposed to be some good ones out there. If they can pull it off, maybe Rothfuss can.
 

afa

Journeyed there and back again
#47
But when I think about it now the one book that really stands out for me is Heroes. I loved the Caul Shivers development in that one. He came from a minor character to my favorite character of Abercrombie's next to Bloody Nine.
The Heroes is my favourite, too. For me, Glokta is still my favourite character, but Shivers, Logen and Gorst are next (in whatever order).

But I think you might be confusing The Heroes with Best Served Cold? Shivers was present in The Heroes, but had a pretty limited role. It was BSC where he was a primary protagonist.

However, the best thing that came out of BSC for me was Nicomo Cosca. Just a brilliant character.

The only female character of his I truly adore is Javre from Sharp Ends. I love her brashness, her craziness , her fuck everything attitude. She's hilarious as fuck. Truly a rival to Bloody Nine madness.
Cosca is awesome. I wasn't sure how much I'd like the short stories with new characters in Sharp Ends, but all the ones with Javre and Shev were brilliant.
 

Alucard

In the name of the Pizza Lord. Charge!
Staff member
#48
But I think you might be confusing The Heroes with Best Served Cold? Shivers was present in The Heroes, but had a pretty limited role. It was BSC where he was a primary protagonist.
Maybe you're right. I remember books by the characters not really by the plot lol
Still, I think I liked Heroes better.

How could I not mention him! I enjoy everything Gorst related. Was so glad to see him in the first book of the new trilogy.

Heroes stands out as his best book in my view. I also really liked the character of Shivers. Great character arc.
Yeah he got a great character arc. He's also present in the new book.
 

kenubrion

Journeyed there and back again
#49
Caul Shivers is an important character throughout A Little Hatred.

I just finished the One Word Kill trilogy by Mark Lawrence. It was brilliant. Mostly a sci-fi story but with a lot of D&D fantasy interludes with the major characters. Highest rec for this wonderful story. It is a soft science fiction work that deals with a tight group of friends growing up on the outskirts of London, one of whom is an ultra-brilliant mathematician as well as being a geeky 15-year old who fears talking to girls and just wants to hang and play D&D. His amazing discoveries power the ensuing exciting narrative. A can't put it down thriller.
 
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Derk of Derkholm

Journeyed there and back again
#50
Have just started "The Iron Dragon's Daughter" by Michael Swanwick.
About half through, enjoying it a lot so far.
I really like Michael Swanwick.

Am now on the second book of the series, "The Dragons of Babel".
Could be described as "American Gods" meets "Ocean's Eleven". Works, though, and is lots of fun.
 

rudyjuly2

Journeyed there and back again
#51
I'm reading "Best Served Cold" pretty slowly. Been two weeks and I'm just over 25% done. It's been fine but I guess just hasn't really sucked me in. I like mystery in my books and this doesn't really have any after the opening twist. Plus I just read Kings of the Wyld and this is similar to that in a small group looking to complete a mission (although this is much darker). I like the characters but I want to read some epic fantasy next. I'm thinking I will try The Warded Man (Demon Cycle #1) next. After that I either take a break from fantasy or re-read the Wheel of Time.
 

afa

Journeyed there and back again
#52
I really like Michael Swanwick.

Am now on the second book of the series, "The Dragons of Babel".
Could be described as "American Gods" meets "Ocean's Eleven". Works, though, and is lots of fun.
I've heard of The Iron Dragon's Daughter for some time, but haven't taken the plunge. I guess I haven't heard enough for me to jump into a new author. But I am intrigued by your description of his work as shit meets entertainment.
 

afa

Journeyed there and back again
#53
After that I either take a break from fantasy or re-read the Wheel of Time.
I like the 2 extremes you are considering. Either you will take a break from reading Fantasy books altogether, or you will go completely the other way and re-read one of the giantest Fantasy series of all-time... :D
 

Derk of Derkholm

Journeyed there and back again
#54
I've heard of The Iron Dragon's Daughter for some time, but haven't taken the plunge. I guess I haven't heard enough for me to jump into a new author. But I am intrigued by your description of his work as shit meets entertainment.
I would suggest to look at one of his many short story collections, as they give a good overview of his works.
 

rudyjuly2

Journeyed there and back again
#55
I like the 2 extremes you are considering. Either you will take a break from reading Fantasy books altogether, or you will go completely the other way and re-read one of the giantest Fantasy series of all-time... :D
I know lol. I think fantasy has moved too far away from the traditional stuff. New stuff doesn’t seem very epic. It tries very hard NOT to be like LOTR or WOT or anything. I didn’t really like book 1 of Malazan and I’m not sure if there are any other old school epic fantasies left out there for me. Maybe the Black Company. I did love the Black Prism but I’m not seeing modern epic stuff as much right now. Maybe I’m not looking hard enough but I’ve read a lot of the major authors. Hopefully some good indie authors like Phil Tucker’s Black Gate pop up more often.

So I will try The Warded Man. But after that maybe a break from Fantasy unless I want to prepare myself for Wheel of Time TV and re-read that beast (maybe skipping some of the middle slog).
 

afa

Journeyed there and back again
#56
Hopefully some good indie authors like Phil Tucker’s Black Gate pop up more often.
There are actually a lot of indie authors who are apparently really good. If you're into indies, then maybe check out the nominees and winners in the Self-Published Fantasy Book-Off aka SFPBO hosted by Mark Lawrence.

http://mark---lawrence.blogspot.com/2018/06/the-official-self-published-fantasy.html

Basically, every year Mark and a bunch of Fantasy reviewers/blogs read a series of self-published stuff and rate them, and then ultimately declare a winner. I think several of the SFPBO nominees have since gone on to be picked up by a publisher. In fact, Phil Tucker's Path of Flames, which you obviously like, was the runner-up in 2016, ultimately losing to The Grey Bastards (which has since been taken up by Random House).
 

TomTB

Super Moderator
Staff member
#57
I'm reading "Best Served Cold" pretty slowly. Been two weeks and I'm just over 25% done. It's been fine but I guess just hasn't really sucked me in. I like mystery in my books and this doesn't really have any after the opening twist. Plus I just read Kings of the Wyld and this is similar to that in a small group looking to complete a mission (although this is much darker). I like the characters but I want to read some epic fantasy next. I'm thinking I will try The Warded Man (Demon Cycle #1) next. After that I either take a break from fantasy or re-read the Wheel of Time.
I was thinking today about my slow trajectory away from fantasy literature, and how I might rekindle the love again. And you're right, I need to go back to where the love first blossomed. I need to reread WOT!!

(but maybe when the kids are a bit older and I don't spend 99% of my days running around after them!)
 

rudyjuly2

Journeyed there and back again
#58
I just started reading the Warded Man (Demon Cycle 1). At least it’s a fairly high rated, completed 5 book fantasy series. I know some here seemed to really like the first book and felt the series slipped in quality. I really don’t know what to expect. The Kindle sample was only 24 pages and the demons haven’t really been described or revealed yet. Bought the book.