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

Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
#41
The massive hype is pretty exhausting, especially given that the book was just a letdown in every regard. I'll reiterate that I managed to slog to the end of The Wank of Kings and we all know my thoughts on that one, and KOTW was a DNF.
The Wank of Kings. Hehe :)

I agree. Station Eleven is outstanding. I thoroughly enjoyed it and it's one of a few books to bring a tear to my eye.
Any other such books, Tom? I'd love recs for books that trigger a similar emotional response.
 

Alucard

In the name of the Pizza Lord. Charge!
Staff member
#42
I've cautiously had my eye on the Blackwing stuff but the incredibly thin girth of the tomes is offputting.
Why does the quantity of pages matter?
McDonald did his thing and very successfully to add in aprox. 400 pages per tome.

If anything, it's a mark of a good writer that is able to relate a story, and do it well in a shorter format.
Not everyone is Steven Erikson, and some of the fantasy writers really only sling fluff in order to accommodate the perceived genre requirements. Less fluff would do us readers a favor and lift some pressure from them as well.
 

Bierschneeman

Journeyed there and back again
#44
Haha, a lot of folks that learn German actually listen to them. But I kind of stay away, because even though metal is my favorite music genre, it's not the best choice for the spoken language. I prefer hip hop and indy rock or even punk rock for everyday spoken German. Especially in German hip hop, they speak/rhyme, not sing, so that's great for catching the right pronunciation. When they are singing it's harder to catch that, and when they are screaming well...you get the picture :)


Hey you know what they say, when in Rome..
But in all honesty the more I learn it, the more I like German. There are so many ways to express in it. I'm having lots of fun learning it and that's the most important imo for information retention.
Maybe Dutch would be a nice challenge, but you guys don't give foreigners much incentive as you are the country in Europe with highest percentage of English speakers outside of UK :D
Here I meet Germans on the regular that don't speak English or their English is very poor. Or just Germans who prefer to communicate with foreigners in German if possible even though their English is great. But also people who know English, but are also learning German so they prefer to communicate in German since they are trying to improve that. They only switch to English when they get stumped, so they use it as a crutch for a certain phrase and then just continue on with German.

Haven't tried reading fantasy, sticking with detective/murder mysteries short stories, as I'm trying to up my fluency with everyday spoken language.
Hobbit might be a good start at higher level, I just finished B1 level (EU proficiency scale for EU languages, don't know if you're familiar with that). Maybe when I'm done with B2, I'll give it a go. It's one of my favorite books after all.
Id give Einsturzende Neubauten a try, thats one of my favorites and they sing very clear in german. unfortunately out of dozens of german bands i listen too, almost all of them sing in english.
 

Bierschneeman

Journeyed there and back again
#45
Drat. was too late editing.
They play industrial in the truest sense. they literally go out to find pipes and containers to bang on, tools to hit them with, and even bring power tools in like a grinder.

Id recommend Perpetuem Mobile, its pretty tame, but the lyrics are verrrrrry clear. and its my fave of theirs.

Their early stuff is harder and more aggressive. Halber Mensch sounds more like skinny puppy or my life with the thrill kill kult.
 

Peat

Journeyed there and back again
#46
Why does the quantity of pages matter?
McDonald did his thing and very successfully to add in aprox. 400 pages per tome.

If anything, it's a mark of a good writer that is able to relate a story, and do it well in a shorter format.
Not everyone is Steven Erikson, and some of the fantasy writers really only sling fluff in order to accommodate the perceived genre requirements. Less fluff would do us readers a favor and lift some pressure from them as well.
I think pretty much everyone other than Maark here would agree with this...

... but I'm pretty sure Maark views pretty much everything that can be done in under 600 pages as unnecessary and unfulfilling.
 

Alucard

In the name of the Pizza Lord. Charge!
Staff member
#47
I think pretty much everyone other than Maark here would agree with this...

... but I'm pretty sure Maark views pretty much everything that can be done in under 600 pages as unnecessary and unfulfilling.
Abercrombie's books are also anywhere between 400-500 pages. Both him and McDonald write grimdark, which is usually shorter than epic or high fantasy. If it was any other subgenre I would at least try to understand but it's grimdark. It is usually shorter than what I already mentioned.

@Bierschneeman thanks for the recs, will check them out to see if I can understand them.
 
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Peat

Journeyed there and back again
#48
Abercrombie's books are also anywhere between 400-500 pages. Both him and McDonald write grimdark, which is usually shorter than epic or high fantasy. If it was any other subgenre I would at least try to understand but it's grimdark. It is usually shorter than what I already mentioned.

Bierschneeman thanks for the recs, will check them out to see if I can understand them.
While the sensible thing to do would be to let @Maark Abbott answer for himself, I'm feeling bored and stupid, which is why I searched his posting history on Abercrombie and found a post from his describing The First Law as not having much story. So I'm gonna guess that he's iffy on grimdark that doesn't follow Epic Fantasy's size conventions (although not unwinnable, as proven by the fact he still likes Abercrombie).
 

ExTended

Journeyed there and back again
#49
Man, I've continued my WoT re-read from last year, I am just at the beginning of the 5th book and I cannot stand Egwene as character even more than before. MarySuepocalypse.

When Nynaeve and Elayne are sort of too full of themselves when interacting with other characters, it's almost fine and even understandable more often than not. But with Egwene every time she opens her mouth or has a inner thought, I literally cringe. Flawless characters could be such a bore. She was sort of bearable until that point, since she'd always have someone else to check her when she too self-absorbed, but from book 4.5 onwards it's Egwene parade and... I might have to revert to diagonal re-reads when it comes to her chapters... i.e. skipping them. :D

Other than that - I've recently finished with Awaken Online: Evolution, i.e. book 3 and Awaken Online: Apathy i.e. book 3.5 and I am already eager for the next one. This series would've been on everybody's mouth if it was more traditional grimdark setting story instead of a LitRpg. None of the consecutive books could reach the opening one when it comes to quality, it was simply too good. But they range from nice to awesome - especially the 3.5 book, Apathy, it felt like going back to the series origin of exploration and exploring a interesting character growth arc and it was satisfying, despite it being a novella about a timid bookish girl. It was awesome because of it, in fact.
 

Maark Abbott

Journeyed there and back again
#50
Why does the quantity of pages matter?
McDonald did his thing and very successfully to add in aprox. 400 pages per tome.

If anything, it's a mark of a good writer that is able to relate a story, and do it well in a shorter format.
Not everyone is Steven Erikson, and some of the fantasy writers really only sling fluff in order to accommodate the perceived genre requirements. Less fluff would do us readers a favor and lift some pressure from them as well.
To me, "less fluff" directly correlates to "rushed". I absolutely LOATHE when a book rushes, and for a short book to reach some sort of conclusion with such a lack of girth, it will be rushing. It's actually one of the main reasons I've not got on with the Witcher books yet - they're so incredibly thin that I get the feeling they'll barrel me along and leave me annoyed as a result.

I think pretty much everyone other than Maark here would agree with this...

... but I'm pretty sure Maark views pretty much everything that can be done in under 600 pages as unnecessary and unfulfilling.
In terms of full length novels, it's more word count. A standard novel for my view is maybe 180k - 210k. Manga / Light novels have a pass as they're a different format to full novels. I've generally found that less than that and either content or pacing is irrevocably compromised and as a result I find myself not enjoying it.

I'm gonna start using Crown of Stars as a girth benchmark really. They're just right in terms of length and pace.

Of course there are exceptions. See: WoK, which just slogged for the sake of slogging.
 

Alucard

In the name of the Pizza Lord. Charge!
Staff member
#51
for a short book to reach some sort of conclusion with such a lack of girth, it will be rushing.
But this is just a prejudice you have. I'm not saying books can't be rushed, but it's crazy to me that you think all shorter books are rushed. Sorry.
It's actually one of the main reasons I've not got on with the Witcher books yet - they're so incredibly thin that I get the feeling they'll barrel me along and leave me annoyed as a result.
Witcher can be comfortably put in sword & sorcery, heroic type of fantasy. Those books were always on the thinner side throughout the history of subgenre. In my opinion grimdark is current continuation of those types of books.

To each his own I guess.
 

Maark Abbott

Journeyed there and back again
#52
But this is just a prejudice you have. I'm not saying books can't be rushed, but it's crazy to me that you think all shorter books are rushed. Sorry.
Witcher can be comfortably put in sword & sorcery, heroic type of fantasy. Those books were always on the thinner side throughout the history of subgenre. In my opinion grimdark is current continuation of those types of books.

To each his own I guess.
Thin books being rushed is an observation born of experience. Even if it's really good, if I get pulled in and then it ends due to just being tiny, I feel short changed. There's no winners with small, girthless tomes.
 

TomTB

Super Moderator
Staff member
#53
Any other such books, Tom? I'd love recs for books that trigger a similar emotional response.
The Road, off the top of my head, is the book that affected me the most. Pretty sure you've read that one though. Similarly, if you've got any for me to add to my list that strike a similar chord it would be appreciated :)
 

Maark Abbott

Journeyed there and back again
#54
While the sensible thing to do would be to let @Maark Abbott answer for himself, I'm feeling bored and stupid, which is why I searched his posting history on Abercrombie and found a post from his describing The First Law as not having much story. So I'm gonna guess that he's iffy on grimdark that doesn't follow Epic Fantasy's size conventions (although not unwinnable, as proven by the fact he still likes Abercrombie).
Mmm, not quite. First Law arguably doesn't have much story because what story there is effectively serves as a vehicle for the characters (the story, really, comes down to 'let's get the macguffin'). . I've always seen it as more of an experiment in character studies - overall a successful one, It's enjoyable and I like Abercrombie's style.

Perhaps consider that I regard Bakker as the pinnacle of the genre at present (I would go as far as to regard him as the present pinnacle of fantasy overall as well).

About 100 pages into 'In the Ruins'. I quite like where this is going. The pacing is just right too, like an awakened golem lumbering inexorably forward.
 

Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
#55
The Road, off the top of my head, is the book that affected me the most. Pretty sure you've read that one though. Similarly, if you've got any for me to add to my list that strike a similar chord it would be appreciated :)
Ai, nothing comes to mind. And yes, I've read The Road.
 

Peat

Journeyed there and back again
#56
Mmm, not quite. First Law arguably doesn't have much story because what story there is effectively serves as a vehicle for the characters (the story, really, comes down to 'let's get the macguffin'). . I've always seen it as more of an experiment in character studies - overall a successful one, It's enjoyable and I like Abercrombie's style.

Perhaps consider that I regard Bakker as the pinnacle of the genre at present (I would go as far as to regard him as the present pinnacle of fantasy overall as well).

About 100 pages into 'In the Ruins'. I quite like where this is going. The pacing is just right too, like an awakened golem lumbering inexorably forward.
Do you think they'd have been as successful as character stories if the story had been more involved, given the number of pages used?
 

Maark Abbott

Journeyed there and back again
#57
Do you think they'd have been as successful as character stories if the story had been more involved, given the number of pages used?
Potentially. Also bear in mind it's word count over pages.
 

Bill Door

Told lies with Locke
#58
Finished the Broken empire and now have just started Glen Cook's, Port of Shadows.
 

Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
#60
I am plowing my way through The Crippled God (Malazan book 10). Having loads of fun, as it is very fast-paced and most (not all) storylines converge here into a nice finale.