It's August 2018: What fantasy book are you reading?

ReguIa

Journeyed there and back again
#1
Well I finished The Great Hunt yesterday. Gave it a 4 as with The Eye of the World but I thought the first book was a bit stronger.

I must say though that this part was spectacular. Only a few times has a moment felt this rewarding for me.
Very close to the end when they sound the Horn of Valere and Hawkwing shows up. When he says something is holding him back and ask Rand, ''Have you the banner?''. He pulls it out and Mat is just going nuts.

Also it felt sort of rushed. With 14 books I was hoping it would take its time, but in this one there were a lot of ways to skip time. Though I do know 99% of the fan base says it drags a lot in the middle...

Fully announcing Rand as the Dragon Reborn at the end of book 2 out of 14 seems too early. I know I know I have 12 books to go so have no idea how it plays out. Another thing is that from the start it feels like you know too much. It could have been more mysterious. You get told from the first 10 pages what the end game is with the Dark One. Anyone else think it would have worked better if maybe half the series led up to the Dark One? It's like Jordan set the bar so high from page one that smaller storylines will only read like filler that you'll just want to get through.
 

kenubrion

Journeyed there and back again
#2
Just finished Spinning Silver, and I loved it. It's a more complex story than Uprooted with more main characters. She writes in the first person from many characters, so instead of telling their story when they hit the stage, she becomes them and they live it. It really works well. Some points of view take only a few pages, others take many, and all repeat as needed. The Rumpelstilsken comparison comes from just one of the main characters' story, and the rest of the book is not related to that specifically but tells a parallel tale. Lots going on at all times. If it seems like chick lit in the first half, it certainly does not from that point on. It's just that the three starring roles are female and it's all set up through their eyes. Absolutely recommend it to anyone who knows how to read.
 

Travis

Might as well be a Malazan regular
#3
I finished Red Seas Under Red Skies last week and it was a flawed, but still very good book. I definitely understand criticisms others have had about it, especially compared to the first book. The beginning was slow and the end was way too fast; while I absolutely loved the middle. The pirate stuff was extremely well done. Very jargon-y but Lynch clearly did his homework and I appreciate that immensely. Overall, I would give this book 9/10. I don't necessarily have a problem with slow beginnings, but the ending was quite weak - surprisingly weak in my opinion. But overall still a great book that I enjoyed a lot.

I'm already 227 pages into Republic of Thieves and so far I'm loving it! The beginning feels quite similar to the early parts of Lies, and I'm loving having Locke's childhood flashbacks back. I still have quite a ways to go to finish this book, but I'm already feeling the craving for Lynch's Thorn of Emberlain and I really hope it won't be more than a year or two before it's released, at most.
 

Cyphon

Journeyed there and back again
#4
After quite a long break I am starting The Waking Fire by Anthony Ryan. I have had it for awhile and put it off because of the last series decline from book 1 to 3. That being said, I read the prologue and really like the potential here.
 

Travis

Might as well be a Malazan regular
#5
After quite a long break I am starting The Waking Fire by Anthony Ryan. I have had it for awhile and put it off because of the last series decline from book 1 to 3. That being said, I read the prologue and really like the potential here.
I'm looking forward to this series as well, so it'll be great to read your thoughts. From what little I've looked into it, it seems this second series doesn't fall into the problems that the first had and all 3 seem to be rated highly. Here is hoping that's the case!
 

kenubrion

Journeyed there and back again
#6
I have so many current books in the tbr pile, and decided to read Adrian Tchaikovsky's newest, Redemption's Blade. I would normally read a sci-fi after a great fantasy to cleanse the palette but I don't have an enticing one. Anyone else reading Blade?
 

Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
#7
Still reading Dust of Dreams (Malazan 9).
 

ReguIa

Journeyed there and back again
#8
I was afraid Spinning Silver would be a let down because my expectations might be too high. I really, really liked Uprooted. Only 70 pages in but wow, I'm enjoying it more than I did Uprooted.
 

rudyjuly2

Journeyed there and back again
#9
Well I finished The Great Hunt yesterday. Gave it a 4 as with The Eye of the World but I thought the first book was a bit stronger.

I must say though that this part was spectacular. Only a few times has a moment felt this rewarding for me.
Very close to the end when they sound the Horn of Valere and Hawkwing shows up. When he says something is holding him back and ask Rand, ''Have you the banner?''. He pulls it out and Mat is just going nuts.

Also it felt sort of rushed. With 14 books I was hoping it would take its time, but in this one there were a lot of ways to skip time. Though I do know 99% of the fan base says it drags a lot in the middle...

Fully announcing Rand as the Dragon Reborn at the end of book 2 out of 14 seems too early. I know I know I have 12 books to go so have no idea how it plays out. Another thing is that from the start it feels like you know too much. It could have been more mysterious. You get told from the first 10 pages what the end game is with the Dark One. Anyone else think it would have worked better if maybe half the series led up to the Dark One? It's like Jordan set the bar so high from page one that smaller storylines will only read like filler that you'll just want to get through.
Things change and other plots are revealed. Don’t worry too much and I think you will continue to enjoy things. For me I think book 4 was the best but the first 5-6 books were really good. It’s books 7-10 (mainly 8-10) that slow down. And then it finished well. There is a slow crescendo in dealing with the Forsaken and the end game.
 

rudyjuly2

Journeyed there and back again
#10
I’m nearing the end of book 2 of Liveship Traders by Robin Hobb. This is the 5th book in a row I’ve read by her. After I complete this trilogy I’m taking a break. I want something more epic. I really enjoy her writing and characters but the slow pace and lack of any epic goal detracts from the book. My reading has slowed and I need a break.
 

rudyjuly2

Journeyed there and back again
#11
On another note I just read Sanderson is releasing a novella about Perrin in WOT. It was something that was originally was cut. I didn't even realize he has done this once already. This is the one area that annoys me about Sanderson. He charges a lot for small novellas sometimes (his YA Steelheart book 1.5 was ridiculous) and then throws a novella or short story into a compilation and charges a lot. He did that with the Way of Kings chapter on Lift and thankfully was able to get that at my library.

https://www.tor.com/2018/08/06/brandon-sanderson-deleted-wheel-of-time-novella-unfettered-iii-2019/
 

Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
#12
On another note I just read Sanderson is releasing a novella about Perrin in WOT. It was something that was originally was cut. I didn't even realize he has done this once already. This is the one area that annoys me about Sanderson. He charges a lot for small novellas sometimes (his YA Steelheart book 1.5 was ridiculous) and then throws a novella or short story into a compilation and charges a lot. He did that with the Way of Kings chapter on Lift and thankfully was able to get that at my library.

https://www.tor.com/2018/08/06/brandon-sanderson-deleted-wheel-of-time-novella-unfettered-iii-2019/
Wow, this is pretty cool. I hope Perrin will be less whiney than he was in some of the WoT books though. The brooding moping thing with Faile really got on my nerves after a while.
 

ReguIa

Journeyed there and back again
#13
@kenubrion I'm 240 pages into Spinning Silver and it's great so far. It's 3 years ago I read Uprooted but I feel that story was much darker than this one? Though I am only half way through..

It's an interesting story but Uprooted was more engaging for me because of how mysterious it was. This one is lacking in that area, but like you said there's more characters here so it's a different focus.

I do hope it picks up soon.
 

Peat

Journeyed there and back again
#14
Hmph. Maybe I'm too much of a grump, but I don't think there should be Sanderson novellas set in the Wheel of Time.


I also recently re-read Feet of Clay and am slowly plodding through The Worm Ouroboros.
 

kenubrion

Journeyed there and back again
#17
@kenubrion I'm 240 pages into Spinning Silver and it's great so far. It's 3 years ago I read Uprooted but I feel that story was much darker than this one? Though I am only half way through..

It's an interesting story but Uprooted was more engaging for me because of how mysterious it was. This one is lacking in that area, but like you said there's more characters here so it's a different focus.

I do hope it picks up soon.
I agree about Uprooted being darker so far. See what you think once the action gets going in the second half.
 

Andrew.J

Journeyed there and back again
#18
I haven't been reading much fantasy recently. But I did finish Marked by Benedict Jacka a few days ago (book 9 in Alex Verus series). It's some really good urban fantasy. I've grown to like the characters and the world a lot and the direction the plot has taken is right up my alley. The mage politics I enjoyed the most, but the entire book is pretty strong, IMO. I'm looking forward to the next books, only 3 left now!
Also, I highly recommend the books, if you haven't given them a shot yet, especially if you like Dresden Files. It has some similarities, but it quickly veers in quite a different direction. The series is one of my reading highlights this year.

I've also dabbled in some classics. I read The Haunting of the Hillhouse, We Have Always Lived in a Castle and The Lottery and Other Short Stories, all by Shirley Jackson. Out of the bunch, I enjoyed We Have Always Lived in a Castle the most. The way Jackson writes a mentally ill girl in this book is very compelling. It's rather creepy but at the same time very natural - even though the character isn't mentally sound, there is a surprising sense of order and logic in her inner world. I haven't seen anything like that in literature or film so far. It's quite a touching book. The others, a novel and a short story collection, I didn't like much. I think I get what she was doing, but it wasn't working for me. The short stories I had most issues with, they were uneven in quality: some were better, others not as much. A few times whilst reading the collection I got an impression that Jackson was writing just for writing's sake. It's well-written and supposedly insightful but feels quite superficial after all.

I've also read 2 novellas by Italo Calvino (translations). The Cloven Viscount and The Baron in the Trees. Both are rather fantastical, they have a fairy tale quality to them. I liked them well enough. I'll be reading more Calvino in the future.
 
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Cyphon

Journeyed there and back again
#20
I haven't been reading much fantasy recently. But I did finish Marked by Benedict Jacka a few days ago (book 9 in Alex Verus series). It's some really good urban fantasy. I've grown to like the characters and the world a lot and the direction the plot has taken is right up my alley. The mage politics I enjoyed the most, but the entire book is pretty strong, IMO. I'm looking forward to the next books, only 3 left now!
Also, I highly recommend the books, if you haven't given them a shot yet, especially if you like Dresden Files. It has some similarities, but it quickly veers in quite a different direction. The series is one of my reading highlights this year.
Still need to buy Marked and give it a read. Don't find a whole lot of mention of Verus but it is a good series. Jacka proves you don't need 500+ pages in the fantasy genre to tell an interesting story. With that being said, he does have a whole site dedicated to extra stuff that goes along with the books and some of that probably should be included in the stories. I know one of the knocks I had early on in the series was that the magic had very little explanation or limits to it. That site kind of covers a lot of that stuff though.

In any case I do enjoy the series. I would say it is better than Iron Druid and at times the equal of Dresden.