It's February 2019: What fantasy book are you reading?

ExTended

Journeyed there and back again
#2
I've been going through Fantasy Faction's top 50 for 2018 to find myself something not too demanding to read between the Malazan and the Marie Brennan stuff I'm currently going through and oh boy, what a mess their list is. I've read 5 from their top 10 books and 3 of them were okay at best. Much much worse than many books that haven't even made the top 50 or are roaming between 10 and 20.

I was only suspecting it last year, but after this mess - yeah, their list is totally biased. I'm actually baffled by the sheer audacity to put City of Lies, The Poppy War or Bloody Rose below Skyward in terms of sheer quality, much less 30-40 places before it...

King of Assassins and The Grey Sister I can understand somehow, they were at least passable books in promising series.

But damn, none of those books could even get close to Cold Iron in terms of characterization/world-building.

There's a website I won't be visiting as often for book recommendations anymore. Half the entries are friends of the moderation team or people who suck up to them in reddit/Facebook. I get the idea of people appreciating authors who connect with them, but seriously - there's only so much leeway for putting your reddit darling in front of house-hold names who've done great things during the year.

As to not be totally off-topic:

I'm well into Malazan 2, almost at the end of Natural History of Dragons 2, at the middle of Edgedancer( Stormlight 2.5) in my Stormlight re-read, I've just DNFed A Gathering of Shadows by V. E. Schwab because the book is so YA it's not even funny and I cannot make myself ignore that anymore and I'll be starting with The Traitor God by Cameron Johnston to replace the V. E. Schwab's drivel with.
 

kenubrion

Journeyed there and back again
#3
I'm on Firestarter.
I think I'm finally losing steam on King :) Next book will probably be something else.
Read It before you quit. You will likely regain your interest. Oh wait, you've seen the movie I think. Nevermind. I didn't watch it just read the great book.

I'm going to read Never Die, Rob Hayes' new book.
 

Alucard

In the name of the Pizza Lord. Charge!
Staff member
#4
Read It before you quit. You will likely regain your interest. Oh wait, you've seen the movie I think. Nevermind. I didn't watch it just read the great book.
Nah never saw the movie, neither the old one or the new one. I read the book last year though ;)

I'm well into Malazan 2
Is this a first time read or a re-read for you?
 

ExTended

Journeyed there and back again
#5
Is this a first time read or a re-read for you?
A bit of both. :)

I've read the series to the middle of the 2nd book maybe a dozen years back and I've liked the series well enough back then, but I've decided to stop reading it because of some personal reasons. But I was always curious and intrigued for this series and I've finally decided to get back into it now - even the re-read felt like reading a new book, since I remembered so little of the plot. I'm currently at the parts that are totally new to me, so I've finished with the re-read and I'm well into new territory now. :)
 
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kenubrion

Journeyed there and back again
#6
I finished Kings of Ash and picked up Ender's Shadow which is sooooo slow through 25%. I read this sometime in the distant past so it seems almost new. Also cracked open Rob Hayes' new Never Die.
 

Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
#7
Out of necessity I'm actually reading two books now, which I normally never do. Thing is, my brother and his girlfriend came over last weekend to spend some time with me and my family. At one point we got to talking about books, and I showed the one I was currently reading to my brother's girlfriend, saying: " I think this book, Doughnut Economics, would be right up your alley. You should read it." I put the book, which I had almost finished, on the coffee table and thought no more of it.

When I went to bed later that night I couldn't find my damned book. I looked everywhere. The kids couldn't have snatched it; they were long in bed when my brother and his gf visited. Couldn't find the book under the coach, under the cupboard, under the piano. Not even in the fridge or oven (in the past when I had had a couple of beers I once put my sneakers in the oven. Don't even ask).

In the end, I decided it was a lost cause. The book was gone. So I started on 11.22.63 by Stephen King (@Alucard: you'll like this one). It's a historical time-travel story. Very cool. Right of the bat you meet some great extended King Universe characters (connected via the Dark Tower of course).

In any case, this morning my brother's gf sent me a text about how neat Doughnut Economics is. She of course took the book with her, as she understood from my recommendation that she should read it right away! I'm such an idiot.

Anyways, long story short: she finished the book and I'll get it back by tomorrow, after which I will probably finish it in another day or two. Once done, I will again pick up 11.22.63 where I left off.

What a life, what a life.
 

kenubrion

Journeyed there and back again
#8
How sweet of you! Yeah, sounds like you're lending/giving it to her. That was nice of her to let you know how she liked it.
 

Peat

Journeyed there and back again
#9
Two book life is the best life.

Took a break for some contemporary fiction/my Invisibles re-read but should be back to the Malazan grind soon.
 

Matticus Primal

Journeyed there and back again
#10
Two book life is the best life.
I imagine you have that tattooed on your stomach, thug life style.

I really want to do a reread of The Invisibles again to see if it holds up. Or if I even understood it in the first place. I'm going to a con in a few months and want to see what I can do about getting a blank white badge before I attend.
 

Peat

Journeyed there and back again
#11
I imagine you have that tattooed on your stomach, thug life style.

I really want to do a reread of The Invisibles again to see if it holds up. Or if I even understood it in the first place. I'm going to a con in a few months and want to see what I can do about getting a blank white badge before I attend.
It holds up for me - if anything it gets better for me - but it is so impossibly broad that I struggle to predict what it will do for anyone else at any given time.
 

Cyphon

Journeyed there and back again
#12
Are there any plans for someone here doing the annual "forthcoming fantasy books" threads? Not sure if it is the same member each time but that list has been a great resource for me in the past and was hoping to have one again this year.

Let's see, since I last posted I have finished 3 fantasy books.

Iron Gold by Pierce Brown

It was a solid entry but didn't match the quality of any of the original trilogy which is disappointing but a bit expected given just how the good the original was from book 1 to 3. If I remember right there were 4 different POV's and maybe that hurt it overall as not all of the storylines were "can't put this down" type of stuff.

For the original trilogy I think I didn't rate a single book below a 9, I'd be at about a 7/10 on this.

Oathbringer by Brandon Sanderson

I was engaged enough because the first 2 books had me invested but this was very slow moving and had almost no wow factor for me. Not a great sign since we are talking about 1000+ page tomes here. Wheel of Time got about 7 books in before it hit the lull and by then I was so invested I didn't mind the lull as much as most. This was too early in the series to have a similar lull but hopefully it turns around in the next book.

7.5/10

Marked by Benedict Jacka

Continues to be maybe the most interesting series in fantasy. Not talking plot, but the fact that in a genre where 500 seems like the minimum page count Jacka can get it done in 300 and not leave you wanting. Most of the time I am left wanting more but that is personal greed as opposed to feeling like the story didn't go into enough detail and things of that nature. Anyway, the actual book was on par with the series and maybe one I would place in the top 3 or so minus the fact that I couldn't tell you which books are which. So maybe some recency bias but whatever. A fun, light series that always delivers.

9/10


Non fantasy related I am a big Michael Connelly fan as far as the Bosch series goes and was looking to find similar series to get back into the crime/detective genre and came across the Elvis Cole series written by Robert Crais. The main character has some interesting quirks and is witty but on the whole it just wasn't coming anywhere close to Connellys works. I went through maybe 5 or 6 of the books and decided to move on.
 

Khartun

Journeyed there and back again
#13
Are there any plans for someone here doing the annual "forthcoming fantasy books" threads? Not sure if it is the same member each time but that list has been a great resource for me in the past and was hoping to have one again this year.

Let's see, since I last posted I have finished 3 fantasy books.

Iron Gold by Pierce Brown

It was a solid entry but didn't match the quality of any of the original trilogy which is disappointing but a bit expected given just how the good the original was from book 1 to 3. If I remember right there were 4 different POV's and maybe that hurt it overall as not all of the storylines were "can't put this down" type of stuff.

For the original trilogy I think I didn't rate a single book below a 9, I'd be at about a 7/10 on this.

Oathbringer by Brandon Sanderson

I was engaged enough because the first 2 books had me invested but this was very slow moving and had almost no wow factor for me. Not a great sign since we are talking about 1000+ page tomes here. Wheel of Time got about 7 books in before it hit the lull and by then I was so invested I didn't mind the lull as much as most. This was too early in the series to have a similar lull but hopefully it turns around in the next book.

7.5/10

Marked by Benedict Jacka

Continues to be maybe the most interesting series in fantasy. Not talking plot, but the fact that in a genre where 500 seems like the minimum page count Jacka can get it done in 300 and not leave you wanting. Most of the time I am left wanting more but that is personal greed as opposed to feeling like the story didn't go into enough detail and things of that nature. Anyway, the actual book was on par with the series and maybe one I would place in the top 3 or so minus the fact that I couldn't tell you which books are which. So maybe some recency bias but whatever. A fun, light series that always delivers.

9/10


Non fantasy related I am a big Michael Connelly fan as far as the Bosch series goes and was looking to find similar series to get back into the crime/detective genre and came across the Elvis Cole series written by Robert Crais. The main character has some interesting quirks and is witty but on the whole it just wasn't coming anywhere close to Connellys works. I went through maybe 5 or 6 of the books and decided to move on.
There is one already.

http://bestfantasybooks.com/forums/...ntasy-and-science-fiction-books-in-2019.3491/
 

Kevin O Donoghue

Is a wondrous friend of modest Kruppe
#14
I have been looking for a book to read over the last few weeks and decided to go with Ian C Esslemont's Dancer's Lament and Deadhouse Landing. I had stayed away from these as I felt that I preferred Erikson's Kharkanas series. I am happy to say that I was wrong. The two books were excellent and it was very interesting to revisit some characters from the Malazan series. I would recommend both and the best thing is that the third book is out shortly so I wont have to wait forever to finish off this part of the series.
 

Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
#15
I have been looking for a book to read over the last few weeks and decided to go with Ian C Esslemont's Dancer's Lament and Deadhouse Landing. I had stayed away from these as I felt that I preferred Erikson's Kharkanas series. I am happy to say that I was wrong. The two books were excellent and it was very interesting to revisit some characters from the Malazan series. I would recommend both and the best thing is that the third book is out shortly so I wont have to wait forever to finish off this part of the series.
Good for you! I read these last month and loved them!
 

Peat

Journeyed there and back again
#16
Dipping and diving between De Bodard's House of Shattered Wings which is very intriguing and elegantly done but so slow and Rob Hayes' Where Loyalties Lie, a piratical romp that's fun but lacking a little polish and pace.
 

kenubrion

Journeyed there and back again
#17
I dropped Ender's Shadow and picked up Dancer's Lament.
 

jo zebedee

Journeyed there and back again
#19
Dipping and diving between De Bodard's House of Shattered Wings which is very intriguing and elegantly done but so slow and Rob Hayes' Where Loyalties Lie, a piratical romp that's fun but lacking a little polish and pace.
I liked House of Shattered Wings but it wasn’t an easy read. I keep meaning to get to Rob’s work.

I’m very slowly (savouring) reading Zafon’s The Labyrinth of the Spirits. Then onto an ARC of Adrian Tchaikovsky’s Children of Ruin. Be jealous :)
 

ExTended

Journeyed there and back again
#20
I've finished with Deadhouse Gates i.e. Malazan 2.

Well then...

One of the few books that has truly managed to break my reader's heart through and through, twice. The Kalam and Fiddler chapters were quite good( the Ikarium part was one of those two truly sad parts, but the minor one) and those two and Mappo/Ikarium tend to be my favorites so far, the Felicin's chapters were the meh of mehs. But damn the other plot line... it's enough to make you question how is that we haven't irrevocably broken this world of ours already.

This was truly a superior book to its predecessor, a worthy sequence if there ever has been one.

My only real gripes are that 1. that I'm still unsure what's happening. Granted, I have a few guesses, but it still doesn't make all that much sense, considering how change-able the characters' goals seems to be from time to time. Quite often, actually. And 2. the magic system is so baffling in its lack of boundaries and veerings from place to place, I could never predict anything with any kind of certainty, and even when I do, it's still so an uneducated guess it's not even funny

But for all that - I feel challenged by the scope and intricacy of this series and I'm glad for it to be so. And that's probably the best way I could've put my general opinion about the series. Satisfyingly challenging mix of unexpected and undesired events, sprinkled with just the right dose of familiarity.

I'm not sure if I'd continue straight forward with the series though. I'm behind on a few other series ( The Books of Babel 3 and Blackwing 2 to be more precise) and I might tackle one of those before Malazan 3, to give my brain a chance to recuperate. Not that the two non-Malazan books mentioned would lack perils... so yeah. :)