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kirksmithicus
02-09-2009, 01:03 PM
I'm not a big fan of the fantasy novel genre at all. It seems to me that either the books are really cheesy, poorly written (like I have room to complain) or both. Several years ago I got this book from a garage sale for a quarter, I don't remember the name of the book, but it was by R. A. Salvatore (you know, about the Drow guy). I was reading it one night and my wife asked me how it was. I told her it was horrible. So of course she asked why was still reading then. I just stared at her, "oh right" she said, and then rolled over and went to sleep. It's because I have a compulsion to finish reading any book I start. I once read an entire book on the history of Eurasian fish hooks, a horrible, horrible, massive and useless tome, but I read it, cover-to-agonizingly-far away-cover. Anyway, I digress as usual. So after reading the R. A. Salvatore book I later learned, much to my surprise and dismay, that he is considered to be one of the top fantasy writers (or popular anyway). So this Christmas my mother-in-law bought a bunch of fantasy novels real cheap from a book sale and gave them to me. She knows I'm a nerd and thought I might like them. So now they have been setting on the shelf staring at me for the last month, and I'm tempted to start reading one, but I'm also wary. (I think I may have read one of his books already, and it was mostly about sheep and woodworking with some magic thrown in, kinda wierd.) They are pretty thick books and will likely consome my free time for at least a week each. So the question is (finally), are these books any good? I've read online reviews already, but I just wanted your opions.

They are all by Robert Jordan, "The Wheel of time" series.

I would also appreciate any recommendations for other good fantasy authors.

If you have not read "Pillars of the Earth" and "World without end" by Ken Follet, I highly recommend them. They are not fantasy novels, but they are good books, set in 12th century England.

Bearfoot_Adam
02-09-2009, 02:43 PM
A friend once told me that Fantasy novels were the Romance novels for men. Yes, there is a lot of fluff but they still can be a good read. They will not generally challenge you in a literary sense. As far as the Wheel of Time don't start them unless you plan to finish them. I feel like the man came up with a really cool world but was in desperate need of an editor. I really think he could have told his entire story in 7 books instead of 12. Sadly, Jordan died before he could finish the series. He knew he was dieing and tried to outline the last book so it could be written by someone else. He promised that all his little plot threads would be wrapped up in this 1 book. Last I heard this one book will need to be released in two volumes because it is already way too long.

As far as other fantasy I would recommend anything by Neil Gaiman.

If you like the idea of fantasy with a strong historical flavor I would say pick up Bernard Cornwell's Warlord Chronicles. This is his historical re-telling of the Arthurian legend. Cornwell is mostly known for his Sharpe's series a great set of books about a English rifleman during the Penninsular wars of the early 1800's. He has a great passion for accurate historical fiction.

Valdar
02-09-2009, 05:49 PM
The trouble I have with recommending books is that the author gets better at his craft as he goes, so you have the choice of starting late in the series and missing the background, or having to slog through the author's early attempts.

Terry Pratchett is the best example of this. His early books were too cutesy-clever to be a good read, but his latest books are excellent, but you'll lack the background of the characters if you start with his latest stuff.

Comic books are like this too, come to think of it- the cheesiness of early X-Men and the like was acceptable when I was 12, and it's the background for the current stories, but man... Claremont's Dark Phoenix saga was epic, and was the basis for the third movie, but it's a really terrible read these days, and the pre-computer art quality mirrors the writing...

Terry Goodkind seems to be the opposite- his early stuff is excellent, but I wasn't able to finish anything after Debt of Bones.

Piers Anthony is another one whose earlier stuff is the best- young-adult to be sure, but it's safe to say that you can stick to the original Xanth trilogy and get the best of his writing.

Robert Jordan and George R. R. Martin I'm guessing are in the first camp- I haven't been able to get through the first few books to get to the good stuff, even after getting Eye of the World on CD...

nijineko
02-09-2009, 07:59 PM
beth hilgartner: colors of the dreamweavers loom.

sylvia louise engdahl: enchantress from the stars.

patricia mckillip: any.

mike resnik: santiago.

andre norton: just about any.

cathy livoni: element of time.

sylvia louise: the books of indigo series.

just a few that have struck me as having useful ideas to draw from over the years.

Etarnon
02-09-2009, 08:25 PM
My favorite is Stephen R Donaldson's Chronicles of Thomas Covenant.

Many, many people hate his work though.

nijineko
02-09-2009, 08:45 PM
i disliked the character rather much. however i did remember the giants who regenerate through fire, and the bracelet of sustenance. that was pretty wild usage of such an item.

Anaesthesia
02-09-2009, 08:59 PM
As far as other fantasy I would recommend anything by Neil Gaiman.

I second this. I love Gaiman!!

I am ashamed I could never get into any Salvatore novel! A sidestep, I have read and enjoyed the Dragonlance Novels and some of the DL anthologies.

The last fantasy book I read, and enjoyed was "The Bard of Sorcery" by Gerard Daniel Houarner. Really nice variant world type of thing, makes me almost want to do a campaign similar to it.

I also like many of Louise Cooper's books and love the Angel series by Sharon Shinn. If you can get your hands on any books in the Heroes in Hell series, I highly recommend them!

I can go on....

nijineko
02-09-2009, 09:14 PM
may i suggest you try "the highwayman" by salvatore? it was what turned me onto his books in the first place.

Edward
02-09-2009, 09:17 PM
So after reading the R. A. Salvatore book I later learned, much to my surprise and dismay, that he is considered to be one of the top fantasy writers (or popular anyway).

I couldn't disagree more. I've never read anything by Salvatore that I liked. (I haven't read anything by him recently, so perhaps he got better.) In fact, of all the D&D-based novels I've read, only one or two were worthwhile -- and the same with Star Wars novels.

My advice is to avoid any books based on role-playing games, television, or movies. I think there are a couple of reasons they tend to be poor quality. They have a built-in fan base, which means they don't need to be good; people are going to read them anyway. Also, different mediums usually don't translate; a good movie may not make a good book, and a good RPG almost never does. Gygax's books are the perfect example. I remember thinking, "This must have been a great module, but he should never have written it up as a book." After all, if you took notes during your next session and wrote it up in book form, how many people would be interested in reading it? Very few, unless you modified it drastically.

As for books I would recommend . . . all the classics, of course. J.R.R. Tolkien; C.S. Lewis; H. Rider Haggard; Edgar Rice Burroughs; H.P. Lovecraft; Robert E. Howard; Robert Heinlein; and so forth.

These aren't all fantasy, but I'd suggest Fred Saberhagen (The Empire of the East, The First Book of Swords, Berserker), Fritz Leiber (Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser series), Michael Moorcock (Elric of Melnibone), Roger Zelazny (Amber series), Susan Cooper (The Dark Is Rising series), Glen Cook (The Black Company), Jack Vance (The Demon Princes, Araminta Station), David Farland (The Runelords), Terry Brooks (Magic Kingdom for Sale -- Sold!), L.E. Modesitt (The Magic of Recluse), L. Ron Hubbard (Battlefield Earth), Brian Lumley (Necroscope), Timothy Zahn (Heir to the Empire, Blackcollar), George R.R. Martin (A Game of Thrones), Jerry Pournelle (Janissaries, Falkenberg's Legion), Larry Niven (The Man-Kzin Wars), Gordon Dickson (Tactics of Mistake), Steven Pressfield (Gates of Fire), William Hoffman (Tidewater Blood), Alastair Maclean (The Guns of Navarone).

Some authors are almost always good, but most are pretty inconsistent. Quite often the first book in the series is excellent and the rest are mediocre. Something about sequels, I suppose. And sometimes I like books that aren't really that good, just because they have good ideas -- an innovative system of magic, a very interesting character, a novel approach to an old plotline, etc.

Everyone who plays fantasy RPG's should read Vance's The Dying Earth (http://www.amazon.com/Tales-Dying-Earth-Jack-Vance/dp/0312874561/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1234231793&sr=1-1), since the D&D spell system is based on it (and it heavily influenced D&D in other ways).

I've been meaning to read The Tough Guide to Fantasyland (http://www.amazon.com/Tough-Guide-Fantasyland-Gollancz-S-F/dp/0575075929/ref=ed_oe_h) by Diana Wynn Jones, but haven't picked it up yet. Looks like an interesting critique of the standard formula.
--- Merged from Double Post ---

So the question is (finally), are these books any good? I've read online reviews already, but I just wanted your opions.

They are all by Robert Jordan, "The Wheel of time" series.

I didn't actually address your question. I thought the first book was excellent (though I agree it could have been cut down quite a bit). The later books . . . weren't. Do you just have to finish the book, or do you have to finish the entire series? If the latter, run away very quickly. Having to plow through the entire series when you only like the first couple would be a fate worse than death.

TAROT
02-09-2009, 11:28 PM
Re: Wheel of Time

They're okay, but nothing happens in books four, seven and ten.

Re: Other Authors

The Deed of Paksenarrion by Elizabeth Moon is one of my favourites.
I also liked the Rhapsody, Prophecy, Destiny series by Elizabeth Hayden.
Though I couldn't really recommend going beyond the original trilogy for either.

Aidan
02-10-2009, 12:02 AM
I'm not quite as compulsive as you seem to be about finishing books, but if I start a book, I almost always finish it. That being said, I tried reading the first book of Jordan's Wheel of Time series and couldn't even make it through. It was boring, and the characters didn't appeal to me at all.

I do recommend George R. R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series, starting with A Game of Thrones. I also recommend Katherine Kurtz's Deryni series. It amounts to about four trilogies, set at different times in the history of the fictional Kingdom of Gwynedd.

MortonStromgal
02-10-2009, 11:39 AM
Clint L. Werner. My favorite of his is a short story called meat wagon. I would suggest reading that first to see if you like his style. He mostly writes for Warhammer Fantasy but I know he has done a lot more than that.

The book with the short story is called Swords of the Empire I believe.
http://www.amazon.com/Swords-Empire-Warhammer-Novels-Gascoigne/dp/1844160882/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1234284421&sr=1-1

Farcaster
02-10-2009, 12:37 PM
I used to be a big fan of R.A. Salvatore, and in fact, I still read his novels. But, I'm tired of hearing stories of Drizzt and his friends. But, if you really want to give Salvatore another chance, I recommend his Demon Wars series, which is set in a world of his own making instead of Forgotten Realms where he has limited control.

I'd also STRONGLY recommend staying away from Terry Brooks.


I tried reading the first book of Jordan's Wheel of Time series and couldn't even make it through. It was boring, and the characters didn't appeal to me at all.

I couldn't agree with you more. When the first novel came out, I think it was, Waldenbooks was giving away copies of the first-half of the first-book. I forced my way through it and then tossed that sucker and never looked back. I'm told the story got better, but if you can't capture my attention in the first 300 pages, for god's sake, then it is very unlikely that I'm going to keep going after that.

tesral
02-10-2009, 08:27 PM
I read one FR novel. I found it to be harmless light reading. Neither prose to make the ages or dreadful beyond reason. A reasonably decent waste of 90 minutes.

Salvatore you will love or hate.

Wheel of Time will eat your brain. The only thing that stopped that series was Jordan passed to the other side of. Death will really cut into you output.

The general problem I have found with fantasy and this goes for a good deal of SF as well, some writers get the mistaken idea that because it is a F/SF book you don't have to try as hard. If anything, you have to work all the harder to get the reader to buy into your story.

nijineko
02-11-2009, 01:47 AM
according to the press release the bookstore i worked for at the time received, his wife had functioned as his pre-editor for the entire series. he made notes up till he couldn't, and then she recorded all that he was able to verbally relate until the end. his wife and one of his best friends will finish the last book as per his request, apparently.

besides, douglas adams already "published a book post-humously".

tesral
02-11-2009, 02:04 AM
according to the press release the bookstore i worked for at the time received, his wife had functioned as his pre-editor for the entire series. he made notes up till he couldn't, and then she recorded all that he was able to verbally relate until the end. his wife and one of his best friends will finish the last book as per his request, apparently.

besides, Douglas Adams already "published a book post-humously".

I said cut into, not end. Look at L. Ron Hubbard. :deadhorse:

Webhead
02-11-2009, 11:49 AM
I feel your pain regarding fantasy/sci fi novels in general. I am an exceedingly picky reader. I tried reading a D&D novel once (couldn't tell you what series/world/author but it was probably something from Dragonlance) and just couldn't do it. I got perhaps 50 pages in and realized that I shouldn't have to force my way through a book.

Below are some of the best fantasy/sci-fi novels and authors that I've encountered:

The Dresden Files (Jim Butcher) - Quite possibly the most exciting, thought-provoking, inspired and cleverly-written fiction I have ever read. I have yet to identify anything about the series that does not sit well with me. The plots are complex but sensical, constantly in motion and filled with unique twists and honest-to-goodness character development. The humor works without being distracting and the characters are a widely varied bunch who are all somehow easy to become attached to.

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?/aka "Bladerunner" (Phillip K. Dick) - A "can't-put-it-down" novel that is so much deeper and more atmospheric than the film (in fact, the film is really only a single plotline of the book). The tone of the book is almost one of ironic black comedy, an irony that the reader can see but which the characters are oblivious to.

Good Omens (Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchet) - Almost reminscent of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. A bizarrely twisted take on the apocalypse and the forces that conspire to bring it about. If you like Douglas Adams' style of wacky humor that takes itself deadly serious, you will probably enjoy this book.

The Hobbit (J.R.R. Tolkien) - Okay, as obvious a recommendation as Tolkien may be, I still think it deserves mentioning. To me, The Hobbit is a more adventurous, light-spirited and easy-to-access book than the LotR trilogy and its writing is more immediately gratifying. I obviously enjoy the LotR books as well, but The Hobbit has been and always will be amongst the greatest of fantasy fiction in my mind.

1958Fury
02-11-2009, 02:41 PM
Nice thread, I'm going to have to write some of this down for when I get some reading time.

Spin-off fiction - by which I mean books set in established universes like Forgotten Realms and Star Wars - are by nature going to be inferior books. Serious writers rarely dabble in other people's worlds; it's too limiting. You can't write a Star Trek book in which Riker dies, unless you bring him back to life by the end of the book. There's exceptions of course (Salvatore himself got to kill a major Star Wars character), but major events are often decided by a higher power than the author.

It's like the difference between TV episodes and movies; original works tend to have higher production values than these "book McNuggets" about Luke Skywalker's grandchildren. But while I find original novels deeper and better written, sometimes I prefer to read spin-off fiction. It's lighter and easier to read. You don't have to memorize a whole new universe. Have you ever seen a superhero movie where the sequel was better than the original? Sometimes it's because the first movie spent too much time telling the character's origin story, and saving the world was an afterthought. In the sequel, they can skip all that and jump straight to the main plot. When I read a Star Wars book, they don't have to spend half the book explaining what a Jedi is, what the Force is, what a lightsaber is, and so on. Plus, I already care about the Star Wars universe, and I care about the Forgotten Realms setting, so I enjoy reading about things that happen in them.

I, too, picked up a copy of the first "Wheel of Time" book. When it failed to hook me after about 200 pages, I knew it wasn't for me. Lately I don't get a lot of reading time. It's hard for me to read anything deep if I know I can't commit to it. So right now I'm reading for fun, and avoiding anything that takes too much thought. So yeah, I recognize that spin-off books aren't very good, and I'll be the last person to defend them as legitimate literature. But I still enjoy reading them.

Heh, a couple of years ago a friend of mine tried to get me to read Stephen King's Dark Tower series. I love King, so I started reading the first book. I almost gave up halfway through - it was dull, badly written, and went nowhere. My friend urged, "It gets better, trust me!" So I finished the book, and still hated it. So then the friend tells me, "Oh, everyone hates the first book, even the die-hard fans. The series gets better." Well, maybe it does, but I'm not going to find out. Why would anyone who hated the first book even pick up the second? I honestly have trouble respecting my friend because of this.

TAROT
02-11-2009, 03:16 PM
Are there any fantasy authors who can tell a story in one book?

I know that Tolkien set the precedent, but sometimes you hear about a "trilogy" that is going into its fourth book. It seems to me that there are all of these rambling series because the author starts writing and has no idea as to where the finish line is going to be or an inability to decide what is and is not important to the story. I'm not saying that I have these skills myself, but are there any recommendations for self-contained novels in the fantasy genre? Probably something less than epic. (I would also be interested in any series where it makes no difference what order the books are read in or whether any are skipped entirely.)

Anaesthesia
02-11-2009, 04:57 PM
Are there any fantasy authors who can tell a story in one book?

Two worth repeating-
Neil Gaiman

"The Bard of Sorcery" by Gerard Daniel Houarner ;)

nijineko
02-11-2009, 05:25 PM
i find that a lot of the lesser known works of authors such as jules verne worth reading. i've recently picked up a batch of sci-fi from the 1800-1950's that i'm about to start reading through. in case anyone is not aware of the site: www.feedbooks.com

very handy.

cigamnogard
02-11-2009, 05:52 PM
Robert Jorden's best stuff was Conan. The Wheel of Time series is so unorginal it scares me. I have never read any of R.A.'s stuff.
*Looking for a good author try Steven Brust.

tesral
02-11-2009, 07:26 PM
Are there any fantasy authors who can tell a story in one book?

I know that Tolkien set the precedent, but sometimes you hear about a "trilogy" that is going into its fourth book. It seems to me that there are all of these rambling series because the author starts writing and has no idea as to where the finish line is going to be or an inability to decide what is and is not important to the story.

Tolkien did write one book. It was the paperback publishers that split it into three volumes. I have The Lord of the Rings on my shelf in red leather in fact. One very large volume.

Rambling series are to my opinion the result of the author wanting another paycheck and having sales good enough on the last book that the publisher goes for it. They consider that a book that made good money will have a ready made fan base for the next one. Sometimes they are right.

Webhead
02-12-2009, 08:53 AM
Are there any fantasy authors who can tell a story in one book?...

The first Dresden Files novel, Storm Front, works as a self-contained story. Yes, Butcher's setting is much, much larger than what is elaborated in just one novel and the seeds are planted in Storm Front for a lot of what is to come, but you can enjoy the first novel even if you never plan to read the others (though you'll probably want to).

There is some amount of chronological significance to the series though, especially beginning with book 3, so if you started reading from book 4 forward, you'd be missing out on some of the impetus for what is happening, though each novel also has its own, immediate plots going on besides the overarching subplots.

If you haven't already, I recommend them. It is the series that got me back into regularly reading novels after a long hiatus of general disinterest toward popular fantasy fiction.

ChaunceyK
02-12-2009, 09:52 AM
I'm (surprisingly) pleased no one has mentioned some of my favorites...it gives me the chance to promote them!

By The Sword (http://www.amazon.com/Sword-Magic-Plains-Vol/dp/0812522680/ref=pd_sim_b_2) - by Greg Costikyan...just a really fun, humorous, stand-alone story. Wait until you meet Dekh!

Costikyan also did a two-book series, "Another Day, Another Dungeon (http://www.amazon.com/Another-Dungeon-Cups-Sorcery-Book/dp/0812501403/ref=pd_sim_b_2)" and its follow-up "One Quest, Hold the Dragons (http://www.amazon.com/Quest-Hold-Dragons-Cups-Sorcery/dp/0812522699/ref=pd_sim_b_1)"...again, more fun & humorous adventure.

Now, since no one has mentioned The Companions (of Dragonlance fame), let me tell you how I came to love them. I started with "Flint the King (http://www.amazon.com/Flint-King-Dragonlance-Preludes-v/dp/0880389117/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1234449212&sr=1-3)" simply because I've always loved cranky dwarfs. Never intended to read any other D&D novels, I just wanted this one because it sounded funny. And it was. But it was also much more fun than I thought it'd be. So I sought out more Flint books, which led me to "Kindred Spirits (http://www.amazon.com/Kindred-Spirits-Dragonlance-Meetings-Sextet/dp/1560760699/ref=tag_tdp_sv_edpp_t)"...hey look, the dwarf has a half-elf friend named Tanis! Hmm, Tanis had a rough childhood but Flint took him under his wing. Pretty cool stuff, I like Tanis. So far so good, I like these 2 characters, what else have they done? They appear together in "Wanderlust (http://www.amazon.com/Wanderlust-Dragonlance-Meetings-Sextet-Vol/dp/1560761156/ref=tag_tdp_sv_edpp_t)", and now I've met an insanely mischevious kender named Tas! He's a complete monkey-wrench in the works of Flint & Tanis. Oh my god, this little guy is FUNNY!!!

From there, I started reading all the Dragonlance books that had The Companions (Flint, Tanis, Tas, Raistlin, Caramon, and Sturm). I think the reason I enjoy the books so much is because I started with a solo book (just Flint), and then went to a duo(?) book (Flint & Tanis), and then a trio(??) book (Flint, Tanis, and Tas), so it gave me time to get to know the characters individually & really appreciate their depth. Had I dove right in with one of the books that features all the Companions, I might not have enjoyed it so much because it might've been too much to take in all at once (you know, trying to get to know 6 characters all at the same time). Now that I know them all, I finally broke down and read a prequel that tells Raistlin's life story & explains why Raistlin is...well, the way he is...in "The Soulforge (http://www.amazon.com/SOUL-FORGE-Dragonlance-Saga-Margaret/dp/0786906456/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1234449846&sr=1-1)". As much as I love Flint & Tas (my favorites), I have to admit Soulforge is mind-blowing.

So anyway, those are my recommendations, along with links & a largely detailed explanation of how I came to love the Dragonlance books centered around The Companions. Hope someone can pick something up from it that they end up enjoying! And remember, always buy used from Amazon, it'll save you money! Or, save even more by simply borrowing from your local library for free!!

1958Fury
02-12-2009, 10:17 AM
And remember, always buy used from Amazon, it'll save you money!

While it's true you can buy a used book on Amazon for a penny, the used book shipping is always the flat rate of 3.99. So even if you buy 10 books from the same store, they ship separately and you get charged 3.99 each - that's $40 for 10 cents worth of books. Since they're from third-party sellers, they're not eligible for Amazon's free super saver shipping.

I think I've heard of some better online used book stores, ones that will combine shipping. They don't get as low as a penny, but anything under $4 is competitive with Amazon if their combined shipping is fair. If anyone wants to recommend some used book websites, I'm sure this entire thread would appreciate it. :)

ChaunceyK
02-12-2009, 07:26 PM
While it's true you can buy a used book on Amazon for a penny, the used book shipping is always the flat rate of 3.99. So even if you buy 10 books from the same store, they ship separately and you get charged 3.99 each - that's $40 for 10 cents worth of books. Since they're from third-party sellers, they're not eligible for Amazon's free super saver shipping.

I think I've heard of some better online used book stores, ones that will combine shipping. They don't get as low as a penny, but anything under $4 is competitive with Amazon if their combined shipping is fair. If anyone wants to recommend some used book websites, I'm sure this entire thread would appreciate it. :)

Abso-toot-o-lutely!

TAROT
02-12-2009, 07:56 PM
Neil Gaiman

I got about five or six chapters into American Gods and decided that I didn't care what happened to any of these people and put it aside. I think that I only made it about three chapters into the falling star one, I can't remember the title (they made a movie recently). I'm gunshy about trying anything else.


If anyone wants to recommend some used book websites, I'm sure this entire thread would appreciate it.

I've used biblio.com successfully, but it's something like an ebay where all of the sellers own used bookstores, so in all likelihood your experience will vary with the individual seller.

Sneaksta
02-12-2009, 09:00 PM
Ok, here is my Fantasy books Rave and Rant!

Rave:
Heh. Just burned up about 14 or so books in the Drizzt Series of FR in about 2 weeks. first 8 or so were Re- reads, cause i hadn't read them in years. what a nerd :biggrin:

Dragonlance.. years ago, got through Preludes 1 and 2, that was about it...

Dresden Series Rocks! Such a different twist and humor! Better by far than most of the meal grinder crap put out recently!
Liked it so much, i burned through all the Codex Aleria books that butcher has released so far.....

Wheel of Time series was Damn good too, no matter that there are fanatics out there..LOL... Jordon was A hell of a writer, man what an imagination. Breaks my heart that the man kicked off like that. Sad

NOW the RANT!:mad:

Jordon kicked off!!! WITHOUT releasing the final book to the series! Bastard! ( lovingly )

Even worse is having read a new author, get hooked, read a few of their books, and then having to wait a year or better for every next book in line.. lol... Like they have to dream this stuff up or something...

Jerks!

Now I am gonna go cry! :Cry:

Time for some relaxing blood pressure meds.... BEER! :thumb:

nijineko
02-13-2009, 12:07 PM
his best friend and his wife are going to finish the last book. he left lots of notes.

Sneaksta
02-13-2009, 08:21 PM
Yeah i know. hope they dont screw it up.

LAST CRUSADER
02-15-2009, 07:56 PM
I like the works of Sir Thomas Malory.

Malruhn
02-17-2009, 08:39 PM
I am all over a series called the "Ranger's Apprentice" by John Flanagan. It is a continuing series that is different from most in that the hero is quite voluntary and even eager. It is usually in the "young adult" reader section, but as a guy that is pushing 50, I have loved each of the five that have been released in the US thus far.

I liked the original Dragonlance series, but fell off them after they sold their collective souls and went totally commercial with them.

Taking a different tack, I really like the Wheel of Time series - and the books that folks above have *****ed about - I saw as just filling out backstory... and I was horrified when Robert Jordan died. I had heard his SON was finishing the last book, I didn't hear it was a friend. I have high hopes, but I'll be crushed if they blow it after a dozen damned books.

Magician, by Raymond Feist is another good book and series. It started with Magician: Apprentice and has gone to the whole Rift War series. Good books!

I also love the David Gerrold series Chtorr War... but he left the damned series in the middle of a huge alien invasion of Earth that seemed to be working. Good series (with homoerotic overtones I didn't need), but it died! I've heard he's going to continue it... but we'll see.

LastGunslinger
02-17-2009, 11:15 PM
I'm not a big fan of the fantasy novel genre at all. It seems to me that either the books are really cheesy, poorly written (like I have room to complain) or both. Several years ago I got this book from a garage sale for a quarter, I don't remember the name of the book, but it was by R. A. Salvatore (you know, about the Drow guy). I was reading it one night and my wife asked me how it was. I told her it was horrible. So of course she asked why was still reading then. I just stared at her, "oh right" she said, and then rolled over and went to sleep. It's because I have a compulsion to finish reading any book I start. I once read an entire book on the history of Eurasian fish hooks, a horrible, horrible, massive and useless tome, but I read it, cover-to-agonizingly-far away-cover. Anyway, I digress as usual. So after reading the R. A. Salvatore book I later learned, much to my surprise and dismay, that he is considered to be one of the top fantasy writers (or popular anyway). So this Christmas my mother-in-law bought a bunch of fantasy novels real cheap from a book sale and gave them to me. She knows I'm a nerd and thought I might like them. So now they have been setting on the shelf staring at me for the last month, and I'm tempted to start reading one, but I'm also wary. (I think I may have read one of his books already, and it was mostly about sheep and woodworking with some magic thrown in, kinda wierd.) They are pretty thick books and will likely consome my free time for at least a week each. So the question is (finally), are these books any good? I've read online reviews already, but I just wanted your opions.

They are all by Robert Jordan, "The Wheel of time" series.

I would also appreciate any recommendations for other good fantasy authors.

If you have not read "Pillars of the Earth" and "World without end" by Ken Follet, I highly recommend them. They are not fantasy novels, but they are good books, set in 12th century England.

Dude, two words: fantasy horror. I have not put down a single Stephen King gore-fest without complete satisfaction. To be completely honest, I'm going to tell you that R.A. Sal is one of my favs, but try to go for the classics. Try some JRR Tolkien if you don't mind skipping past all of the folk-songs (har har). But if your looking for an addictive, heart-wrenching fantasy, try my number one love of all time: THE DARK TOWER. This sci-fi, western, fantasy, horror will leave you bawling your eyes out-- not that it made ME cry, or anything-- The series is seven books long, and I was really frightened that the ending wouldn't pull through. . . but little did I know that I was about read THE BEST ENDING EVER POSSIBLE!!!
This book has been called Stephen King's Opus Magnum, and for good reason. It combines all of his books together into a symphony of destruction. Try it.

kirksmithicus
03-02-2009, 06:17 PM
Thanks to everyone who responded. I think I will start on the Wheel of Time books, especially considering that I have books four, seven and ten. :D Actually, I have four, seven and eleven, but pretty close. Thanks for the advice on the other books as well, many of them I have already read, but those I have not I will definitely look into.

Lucian-Sunaka
03-04-2009, 10:06 PM
The Author I have to recommend is Terry Brooks. I'm absolutely enamored with his Shannarra (SP?) series. I've read every book he's released for it, and his most recent trillogy, set in a time shortly after our own that presents the origon of the world he creates in the Shanara series.

And something you may like about the origonal trillogy, all three of them are stand alones, independent stories with different people from the same families. Honestly it P***** me off to open the second book and find out the main characters from the first were in their 80's now, but it makes reading them easier if you don't go in order.

DMMike
03-05-2009, 10:49 AM
Hmm...no one mentioned Children of Hurin in particular. Phenomenal book by Tolkien. Don't miss it.

It seems that whenever I pick up a random new fantasy book, it has at least one of three problems:
- the main characters are high level politicians, not adventurers,
- magic is omnipresent and grossly unbalanced,
- the culture in the book is modern USA, not one unique to the story.

Hmm, I forgot to mention RA Salvatoritis, which is the condition of every enemy combatant not even being worthy of the label "combatant" (I know it's everywhere, but it seems particularly egregious in RA's books).

Is there really no talent out there, or does market research dictate that the fantasy books market should be flooded with cheesiness?

Webhead
03-05-2009, 02:15 PM
...Is there really no talent out there, or does market research dictate that the fantasy books market should be flooded with cheesiness?

In part, you can blame publishing editors. It is they that ultimately decide which book treatments to accept and which to reject. As a general rule of business (in all media, not just novels) they tend to favor the "comfortable" and "familiar" ideas because they know that they can sell them. Businesses are loathe to take risks that they are not sure they can see a return on when it involves considerable investement of their time and money.

That's not to say that this is by any means a universal trend, but it does mean that the ratio of hum-drum mediocrity to snazzy originality is largely unbalanced because mediocrity is a much "safer" and "simpler" investment. Many consumers are very resistant to change...or so popular media would have us believe. A self-perpetuating cycle.

Vouru kasa
03-05-2009, 03:34 PM
Paul, Kidd

Book 1: White Plume Moutain
Book 2: Descent into the Depths of the Earth
Book 3: Queen of the Demonweb Pits

Personaly I never liked R.A Salvatore, but Pauls books had me enthralled till the end. I highly recommend them

Otakar
03-05-2009, 04:59 PM
Vouru, I devour Salvatore books but I will definitely try those titles by Paul. The Belgariad by David Eddings is a good read and has some great ideas for fantasy villains.

Webhead
03-05-2009, 06:24 PM
Paul, Kidd

Book 1: White Plume Moutain
Book 2: Descent into the Depths of the Earth
Book 3: Queen of the Demonweb Pits

Personaly I never liked R.A Salvatore, but Pauls books had me enthralled till the end. I highly recommend them

This is the only D&D-related fiction that I've ever been tempted to read. The characters (especially Justicar) intrigue me. I will definately have to squeeze these books into my reading schedule as I have been putting them off for far too long.

cigamnogard
03-05-2009, 08:44 PM
The Eberron novels are also quite good.

Valdar
03-06-2009, 01:01 PM
Is there really no talent out there, or does market research dictate that the fantasy books market should be flooded with cheesiness?

Well, it needs to be flooded, that's for sure. You can buy fantasy novels in every supermarket and airport kiosk- WotC's novel publishing far outstrips their actual game publishing... I keep seeing new books from WotC with exciting titles, but then they all turn out to be novels instead of game supplements :(

upidstay
03-06-2009, 08:22 PM
Huge fan of the fantasy genre. Read countless books. Some good, some awful.

Salvatore's earlier stuff was good. Not exactly Pulitzer material, but generally good reads. It started getting melodramatic and schmaltzy, so I stopped reading. I bought his latest one, and read about 1/4 of it, then gave up in disgust.

Big fan of Raymond E Feist. Stephen Donaldson is very good. Zelazny is a good choice. Can never go wrong with Tolkien. He invented the genre, for the most part.

I would say the biggest problem with fantasy books is the same with sci-fi: There's some truly wretched books out there. I like my library, cuz if a book bites, it didn;t cost me anything to find out. I blew $25 on the latest...

cigamnogard
03-09-2009, 06:16 PM
I have to say I disagree with never going wrong with Tolkien. My goodness! The epic battle you have waited the entire book series for - is a hobbit stabs an orc - the orc falls on him!
What!
Sorry, Tolkien sucks with his action scenes.

yukonhorror
03-09-2009, 06:48 PM
went straight to reply (vs reading all other posts)

My wife LOVES wheel of time. She got into the biggest fit when the author died (cause there is one book left). She says the stories are very good, one of them is pretty "political." Political in terms of the wheel of time world (politics between the nations in the world). She's read each book multiple times, so I guess they have re-readability.

I can't give my two bits, because I find it very hard to get into any book so I have never really attempted to read them.

Sneaksta
03-10-2009, 08:53 AM
How About Christopher Paolini. Eragon series is looking pretty good.

And from the mind of a teenager, this was excellent. Tho I have seen in the second book the signs of possible commercialism.. I hope he sticks to his guns for the rest of his series, and doesn't bow down to editors. He has made his first Million, so he can afford to stick to his imaginitive insight.

However Eragon the movie was a big sellout. Almost haven't seen a worse movie of this genre since D&D movie.. the first one.... bad.

I was so disapointed with this. If yer gonna Make a movie based on a book, Better damn well have some backstory in it. I hated how He found the egg, and the dragon hatched, then almost whammo, skip all the storybuilding and off to the main adventure.. Might have been different if I had seen the movie first, but reading it, getting hopes up when you see they are releasing a movie, and being so disgusted with the movie I almost left halfway in?.....

Anyway, Cheers

Otakar
03-10-2009, 09:59 AM
Salvatore's earlier stuff was good. Not exactly Pulitzer material, but generally good reads. It started getting melodramatic and schmaltzy, so I stopped reading. I bought his latest one, and read about 1/4 of it, then gave up in disgust.

I blew $25 on the latest...

Was Salvatore's "Pirate King" the let-down? I almost picked it up. This weekend. I ended up buying the 4thEd DMG instead.

1958Fury
03-10-2009, 10:53 AM
I have to say I disagree with never going wrong with Tolkien. My goodness! The epic battle you have waited the entire book series for - is a hobbit stabs an orc - the orc falls on him!
What!
Sorry, Tolkien sucks with his action scenes.

I highly respect Tolkien's world-building abilities, and his overall plots. But the text itself is difficult to enjoy. A modern writer with a contemporary grasp of the language can manipulate my emotions to a great degree. Stephen King can actually make my arm hairs stand on end, using just a couple of sentences. But older writing styles can never hope to acheive this effect. I'll admit that this is my failing, not Tolkien's.

Thriondel Half-Elven
03-10-2009, 01:56 PM
After reading the list i guess i don't read very many fantasy books!

Of course Tolkien is god. But i love Salvatore. I have read a few Terry Brooks and thought they were awesome. The same with Weis/Hickman books.

I agree with the Paolini post. I'm not sure if anyone else saw anything. but a while ago Paolini was getting a lot of flack about being a hack and stealing his ideas. I however love the books.

I have only read the 2nd book in the wheel of time series. (didn't realize it was the 2nd one will i was almost done!) but it was very good.

cigamnogard
03-10-2009, 06:48 PM
How About Christopher Paolini. Eragon series is looking pretty good.
And from the mind of a teenager, this was excellent. Tho I have seen in the second book the signs of possible commercialism.. I hope he sticks to his guns for the rest of his series, and doesn't bow down to editors.
Anyway, Cheers

Just finished the latest book and it is a little drawn out but otherwise good. Reads like a D&D adventure that the DM has lost control of - which I liked.

upidstay
03-11-2009, 12:58 PM
I started the Wheel of Time series. I think he was selling so well that his editor got afraid of touching anything. The books were just waaaayyyyyy to long. If he could say something in two sentences, he wrote 3 pages about it instead. I gave up after the third book, I think. I do have an autographed 1st edition of the 4th book, if anybody wants to buy it??
--- Merged from Double Post ---
OTAKAR

Yes, it was the Pirate King I put down and never picked back up. Just the usual Salvatore stuff. Intensely worded battle sequences followed by sopa opera stuff.

Otakar
03-12-2009, 09:38 AM
Yes, it was the Pirate King I put down and never picked back up. Just the usual Salvatore stuff. Intensely worded battle sequences followed by sopa opera stuff.[/quote]

Good to know. With all the stuff out there I'll find something more worth my time.

cigamnogard
03-12-2009, 04:59 PM
Has anyone but me read Steven Brust's Taltos series?

baatin
03-16-2009, 08:12 PM
i am really into R.A. Salvatores the legend of drizzt i am currently on book book ten and i like how errtu is plotting to kill drizzt and everyone that cares about him

Umiushi
03-18-2009, 04:23 AM
Has anyone but me read Steven Brust's Taltos series?
Not only have I read them, the best D&D campaign I ever played in was heavily inspired by the series. It was the DM who introduced me to the books. Nothing sends a chill down your spine like facing off against an assassin armed with a Morganti dagger. Steven Brust's Taltos (and Dragaeran) series, and Roger Zelazny's Chronicles of Amber have a special place in my heart.

Tim Powers novels are dynamite. My favorite is Anubis Gates. If I could run a role-playing game that action-packed and edge-of-the-seat thrilling, I'd be able to charge my players money.

Perhaps because I like fantasy so much, I find that I'm kind of picky when it comes to the novels I like. Too often, I find that rereading an earlier work I enjoyed when I was younger doesn't engender the same appeal it did the first time around. I used to love the Riftwar series, but the last time I picked one up, it felt like the book was vacuuming out my brain.

On the other hand, while it's been similarly long since I read the Deryni Chronicles, I second Aidan's recommendation. I like how the Deryni books presented fantasy in the context of a richly-developed society. Those novels heavily influenced how I present "traditional" fantasy clerics.

Currently, I'm enjoying George R. R. Martin's Song of Fire and Ice that several have already mentioned...if you can call it "current" what with the rate he writes them.

Tarot asked about fantasy authors that can tell a story in one book. I reply with Guy Gavriel Kay. Yes, he wrote one four-novel series, and yes, Lord of Emperors is the sequel to Sailing to Sarantium. However, Tigana, A Song for Arbonne, The Lions of Al-Rasan, and The Last Light of the Sun are all stand-alone novels, each with a different flavor and setting, and I count them among my favorites in the genre, especially Tigana.

Even though I read through the posts twice, I probably missed some. Still, it seems curious that I couldn't easily find any mention of Lois Bujold. She's better known for her Vorkosigan science fiction, but I really enjoyed The Curse of Chalion, and I'm looking forward to reading Paladin of Souls.

cigamnogard
03-18-2009, 05:43 PM
Awesome! A few names I have never heard of but you can bet I will be checking them out the next time I am at the bookstore!

tesral
03-19-2009, 12:16 AM
I will second Steve Burt's Talos series. I've read a few of them and they are well told and have an interesting world setting.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
03-19-2009, 12:26 AM
Yes, it was the Pirate King I put down and never picked back up. Just the usual Salvatore stuff. Intensely worded battle sequences followed by sopa opera stuff.

Good to know. With all the stuff out there I'll find something more worth my time.[/QUOTE]
I also tried reading the Pirate King. Got about 3 chapters in, and did something i've only done a handful of times in my life... i put the book down.

Envikin
03-19-2009, 08:45 AM
I'm not a huge reader but I loved the first set of The Runelords by David Farland. The first four are one story and it's great. The next set (which isn't finished yet) is ok but takes a completely different turn in terms of the scale of the story.
I attempted to read the Wheel of Time books but they started to drag on and on in say the 5th/6th book.
My wife would recommend (and has repeatedly) the classic monster stories of Frankenstein and Dracula. She also likes Steven King but she's into more horror/suspense than fantasy. What I read of his Dark Tower series I liked. It is a dark western/fantasy mix.

Otakar
03-19-2009, 10:44 AM
I haven't seen any mention of Terry Goodkind. "The Wizard's First Rule" was excellent! The series continues and I've read most of them. They go up and down and don't seem to capture the excitement of the first book but they are still good reads.

cigamnogard
03-19-2009, 05:35 PM
I think they have made it into a TV series now...
--- Merged from Double Post ---
...yep:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legend_of_the_Seeker

Valdar
03-20-2009, 09:48 AM
I haven't seen any mention of Terry Goodkind.


er... did you read the whole thread?



Terry Goodkind seems to be the opposite- his early stuff is excellent, but I wasn't able to finish anything after Debt of Bones.

nijineko
03-20-2009, 04:21 PM
A friend once told me that Fantasy novels were the Romance novels for men.

i thought those were westerns....

having worked in a bookstore, i had opportunity to glance through all those genres i normally never get around to reading. the only books that had a greater density of sex-is-supposedly-romance than the westerns was the romance section, and the one portion of the "self-help" section.
--- Merged from Double Post ---

Steven Brust's Taltos (and Dragaeran) series, and Roger Zelazny's Chronicles of Amber have a special place in my heart.

Still, it seems curious that I couldn't easily find any mention of Lois Bujold. She's better known for her Vorkosigan science fiction, but I really enjoyed The Curse of Chalion, and I'm looking forward to reading Paladin of Souls.

brust's series is a fun read. the amber series is a very enjoyable read. more so now that i'm older. bujold has a very enjoyable sarcastic wit, and a gift for characterizing. i still laugh out loud at the 'vorkosigan' series, and i've read it quite a few times. in her fantasy works, the 'curse of chalion' was one of the best of that particular series.

i also find that 'sabriel' by garth nix is worth the read, despite its placement. (young adult, typically) i've also enjoyed the older works of andre norton, some of anne mccaffrey, beth hilgartner, louise cooper, sylvia louise engdahl, susan cooper, and the 'gandalara cycle'.

of r.a. salvatore's work, i find that the 'highwayman' and the 'crimson shadow' series to be enjoyable and worth the read.

stackpole's 'talion:revenant' is a fun read, as is the 'santiago' pair by resnik, and sanderson's 'elantris'.

despite the datedness, the 'lensman' series is enjoyable, as are the old tsr 'buck rogers' series. it was suprisingly hard sci-fi, especially given what i recall of the tv series. ^^

i could go on, but i'd better stop for now. please let me know how you found these. =D

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
03-20-2009, 05:12 PM
I'm a big Drow fan and there were 6 books that gave me my fix. Check out the War of the Spider Queen series. I found them to be... extraordinary.

Lately, ive been really diving deep into the WFRP novels. I just prefer my books very dark and gritty, and surprisingly, the aforementioned books fell into that category.

There is another omnibus i would love to mention for i found it to be outstanding, but my recollection must be off, for i'm not getting any hits on Amazon. I'll have to do a bit of research.

Also, and i will admit it here, i loved Thomas Covenant, The Unbeliever, Series, by Stephan R. Donaldson. The first 3 books, anyway. It's not really dark and gritty, but i loved them in high school.

I even read a few years back that the rights were bought up for a potential movie to be in the works, one day.

Addendum: Ha! I found them. Check out The Blackhearts omnibus, by Nathan Long, you wont be dissappointed.

cigamnogard
03-20-2009, 07:49 PM
er... did you read the whole thread?

I knew it would come in handy reading the entire threads!

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
03-20-2009, 09:49 PM
Hmm, perhaps re-reading all the posts would be wise. I better go back and read them through again.

Otakar
03-23-2009, 10:43 AM
I think they have made it into a TV series now...
--- Merged from Double Post ---
...yep:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legend_of_the_Seeker

I should take a look at that. I like the actor they chose for Darken Rahl. That guy looks exactly like I envisioned Darken Rahl. I'll probably have to get Netflix to get it. Thanks for the lead!
--- Merged from Double Post ---

I'm a big Drow fan and there were 6 books that gave me my fix. Check out the War of the Spider Queen series. I found them to be... extraordinary.

Thanks, Thoth. I was wondering about those. I soared through the Legacy books by Salvatore.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
03-23-2009, 11:23 AM
Be sure to put them on the top of your to-read pile, Otakar. You'll be thankful that you did. The War of the Spider Queen series were excellent. I am holding out hope that more are written.

Otakar
03-24-2009, 01:40 PM
I will, Thoth. I'm finishing the Belgariad by Eddings now. I also have Dungeon Mastering for Dummies 4thED pending at the library but there's a little wait on that. I'll read "War of the Spider Queen" while I'm waiting.

yukonhorror
03-24-2009, 01:46 PM
Seems like a lot to read through, so will be "that guy" and ask, did you end up reading those wheel of time books or not? My wife is curious, and still recommends them.

kirksmithicus
03-24-2009, 11:03 PM
Seems like a lot to read through, so will be "that guy" and ask, did you end up reading those wheel of time books or not? My wife is curious, and still recommends them.

I assume that was addressed to me? If so....

Nope, I didn't read it. In fact I took a load of books (including that one) over to the used book store today to get in store credit and in order to look for some of the books mentioned in this thread. Funny thing though, I was just going to trade them in for more books until the clerk mentioned that they will trade for cash. So I said, "that sounds like a good idea, so how much is the cash value as opposed to the trade value". Turns out she didn't know, so she had to call the manager. The manager told me it was more complicated. I told her, I'm fairly intelligent, try explaining it to me. She wouldn't do it. Told me that it was against store policy. BAH whatever! Then she got mad at me because I told her that was a bunch of crap, and that my guess was they have no systematic procedure appraising the cash value of books. They probably just offer you 10.00 take it or leave it regardless of what you bring in. So I ended up taking the trade in value, which was $60.00 and pissing off the manager, not to bad of a day :D.

The reason I traded it in is because I would rather start with book one of the series. If they have that book when I go back later in the week to peruse the aisles, I might pick it up.

tesral
03-25-2009, 08:59 AM
Then she got mad at me because I told her that was a bunch of crap, and that my guess was they have no systematic procedure appraising the cash value of books. They probably just offer you 10.00 take it or leave it regardless of what you bring in. So I ended up taking the trade in value, which was $60.00 and pissing off the manager, not to bad of a day :D.
.

Some people need pissing off. I'm guessing you are right. My favorite (now closed) comics (and just about everything else) store had a clear and understandable policy. Trade or 50% of that in cash. It was worth it to trade.

So I'm guessing you are exactly right. They have no policy. I would find a different used book store that can articulate their policy.

Just me mind you.

Otakar
03-25-2009, 10:19 AM
I read 2 Conan books by Robert Jordan. He must've used "Pendulous Breasts" to describe more than one female character in the books. I had the mind picture that all of the female characters were Dolly Parton wannabees. I guess that isn't all that bad but females come in all shapes and sizes and I like a little variety in my fantasies..., I mean fantasy novels. ;) I haven't bothered to read any Jordan since.

tesral
03-25-2009, 11:22 AM
Getting hung on a phrase is a bad habit. That's a bad phrase to get hung on, it leaves you Pendulous.

It kinds of plays into the barbarian fantasy stereotypes. All the woman are "pendulous" all the guys "rippling with muscles".

Meh.

Sneaksta
03-25-2009, 11:56 AM
Just completed reading the Drenei Saga by David Gemmel. Very Very Good!

Now, his timeline jumps a bit, as in the first book, a hero dies, and in the 4th or 5th book, Jumps back in time to Outline said hero's life, but all in all,
Darn books had me Glued! Especially the Waylander and Druss books.

And for those who like Historical fiction, There is a series I am reading now by Dorothy Dunnet. House of Niccolo' series. Very well thought up and researched, Set in early Europe. France, Italy, Trebizond, Duke of Burgundy, Dauphin Pretender of France, etc. Moves a little slow at time, but it is just setting things up for the fun stuff..

GoddessGood
03-25-2009, 12:02 PM
Man, this thread is making me want to go pick up a library card again. Maybe I'll restart up my project to read all the star wars novels. Someone has put together a very convenient wiki article on the subject. At the moment, though, I'm in the middle of the Ender's Game series. I read Ender's Game and Ender's Shadow in highschool and never had the chance to pick up the rest of it.

a-parsons
03-25-2009, 05:26 PM
the warhammer 40k books by Dan Abnett

if you are a fan of RPG games, i advise his "Inquisitor" books, "Eisenhorn" or "Ravenor". They are sci-fi fantasy, set approximately 37500 years in the future, and they follow the lives of Gregor Eisenhorn and Gideon Ravenor, who are Inquisitors, like the old spanish inquisition, but with guns and space ships.

very good readss: dan abnett is a brilliant writer, very refreshingly deceptive - he should be writing crime dramas lol.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
03-25-2009, 07:08 PM
the warhammer 40k books by Dan Abnett

if you are a fan of RPG games, i advise his "Inquisitor" books, "Eisenhorn" or "Ravenor". They are sci-fi fantasy, set approximately 37500 years in the future, and they follow the lives of Gregor Eisenhorn and Gideon Ravenor, who are Inquisitors, like the old spanish inquisition, but with guns and space ships.

very good readss: dan abnett is a brilliant writer, very refreshingly deceptive - he should be writing crime dramas lol.
I'm loving the Warhammer fantasy novels, for they dont disappoint. Once i'm done reading my latest novel, Zavant; next on my reading list is by this author, his book/s, The Inquisitor, Omnibus, i believe. Cant wait!

1958Fury
03-26-2009, 06:22 AM
Getting hung on a phrase is a bad habit.

In a couple of the Drizzt books, Salvatore keeps describing Wulfgar as "closer to seven feet than to six." I hate that; I really wish he'd occasionally say something like "nearly seven feet tall" or "almost seven feet tall" or heck, even "six feet, seven inches." Granted, none of those alternatives sound very medeival, but it really stands out like a sore thumb when you read that exact phrase - "closer to seven feet than to six" - within a few chapters of each other. Mix it up once in a while, there has to be other ways to describe someone's height!

a-parsons
03-26-2009, 09:41 AM
ahh yes, the inquisitor omnibus includes a few of them. but it will be a long read - eisenhorn alone is a trilogy, plus 2 short stories. not sure about the rest lol

cigamnogard
03-30-2009, 07:59 PM
In a couple of the Drizzt books, Salvatore keeps describing Wulfgar as "closer to seven feet than to six." I hate that; I really wish he'd occasionally say something like "nearly seven feet tall" or "almost seven feet tall" or heck, even "six feet, seven inches." Granted, none of those alternatives sound very medeival, but it really stands out like a sore thumb when you read that exact phrase - "closer to seven feet than to six" - within a few chapters of each other. Mix it up once in a while, there has to be other ways to describe someone's height!

He's using a trick Homer invented when he did the Wraith of A. - more commonly known as the Illiad.

Mindbomb
03-30-2009, 09:41 PM
Salvatore is good if you've grown up on him or really started reading with him like I(& most of my friends) did, I think.

However, while some others have mentioned George R.R.Martin's Song of Fire and Ice series(starting with A Game of Thrones), no one has said how absolutely engrossing this series is. I say that's it's more compelling than LotR or Dune and more in depth than either. And now would be a good time to start reading since the next one comes out in Nov.

Also Terry Pratchett's Discworld is amazing. Start with Jingo and go forward from there. Right up with Douglas Adams Hitchhikers series IMHO.

My favorite new(er) author in the comedic fantasy vein has absolutely got to be A.Lee Martinez, Everything from Gil's All Fright Diner, to Too Many Curses has been a barrel of laughs.

cigamnogard
04-02-2009, 03:38 PM
the warhammer 40k books by Dan Abnett

if you are a fan of RPG games, i advise his "Inquisitor" books, "Eisenhorn" or "Ravenor". They are sci-fi fantasy, set approximately 37500 years in the future, and they follow the lives of Gregor Eisenhorn and Gideon Ravenor, who are Inquisitors, like the old spanish inquisition, but with guns and space ships.

very good readss: dan abnett is a brilliant writer, very refreshingly deceptive - he should be writing crime dramas lol.

Yes, very good but I thought we were discusssing fantasy books?

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-02-2009, 03:43 PM
Yes, very good but I thought we were discusssing fantasy books?
I would argue them to be space fantasy. :rolleyes:

Well... maybe not, but still... ;)

cigamnogard
04-02-2009, 03:47 PM
Nah - are you sure you want to go there?

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-02-2009, 03:49 PM
Nah - are you sure you want to go there?
Uh, maybe not. :bolt:

cigamnogard
04-02-2009, 03:52 PM
Good call :cool:

tesral
04-03-2009, 09:15 AM
Yes, very good but I thought we were discusssing fantasy books?

Good books, like good ideas are where you find them.

TAROT
04-03-2009, 12:11 PM
Nah - are you sure you want to go there?

I will. It takes more than spaceships and ray guns to make science fiction.

cigamnogard
04-03-2009, 04:54 PM
Accoding to editors all it takes is rivets... ;)

tesral
04-03-2009, 11:19 PM
I will. It takes more than spaceships and ray guns to make science fiction.

This is true. However the definition of exactly what is Science Fiction will vary depending on who you talk to. I kind of like ot have a little science in it.


Accoding to editors all it takes is rivets... ;)

From the Trekcreative Lexicon (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/trkguid/lexicon.html)

Science Fiction A from of speculative fiction first defined and promoted as such by Hugo Gernsback by founding the first magazine dedicated to it, Amazing Stories, in 1926. The Science Fiction Achievement award, given to various works each year by vote of the members of the World Science Fiction Society, is named the "Hugo" after him.
Science fiction is often defined in terms of various sub genre. These can include:
Hard SF: Obeys the known rules of physics with one exception. (FTL, Hyperdrive etc.) Can speculate on future developments within reason.
Soft SF: Obeys the general rule for Hard SF but can play freer with the exceptions.
Science Fantasy: Follows the framework of science fiction, using the tropes of that genre I.E. space ships, strange worlds etc. but hews closer to the rules of fantasy. Most space opera is Science Fantasy.
Fantasy: Breaks known laws of physics and replaces them with alternative laws. "Magic" known unreal beasts on Earth etc.
Alternate History: Can be hard or soft but explores the possible future if certain events in history had not turned out as they did. The Confederacy won, ancient people did invent the steam engine, etc.

cigamnogard
04-06-2009, 03:14 PM
This is true. However the definition of exactly what is Science Fiction will vary depending on who you talk to. I kind of like ot have a little science in it.



From the Trekcreative Lexicon (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/trkguid/lexicon.html)

Science Fiction A from of speculative fiction first defined and promoted as such by Hugo Gernsback by founding the first magazine dedicated to it, Amazing Stories, in 1926. The Science Fiction Achievement award, given to various works each year by vote of the members of the World Science Fiction Society, is named the "Hugo" after him.
Science fiction is often defined in terms of various sub genre. These can include:
Hard SF: Obeys the known rules of physics with one exception. (FTL, Hyperdrive etc.) Can speculate on future developments within reason.
Soft SF: Obeys the general rule for Hard SF but can play freer with the exceptions.
Science Fantasy: Follows the framework of science fiction, using the tropes of that genre I.E. space ships, strange worlds etc. but hews closer to the rules of fantasy. Most space opera is Science Fantasy.
Fantasy: Breaks known laws of physics and replaces them with alternative laws. "Magic" known unreal beasts on Earth etc.
Alternate History: Can be hard or soft but explores the possible future if certain events in history had not turned out as they did. The Confederacy won, ancient people did invent the steam engine, etc.

Those are authors discussing points for a workshop - not editors.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-06-2009, 03:25 PM
Just picked up the Centenary Edition of The Complete Chronicles of Conan, by Robert E Howard. It cant any more freakin' cool than this.

http://www.amazon.com/Complete-Chronicles-Conan-Robert-Howard/dp/0575077662/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1239049352&sr=8-1

cigamnogard
04-06-2009, 03:27 PM
Good book - where are you in it?

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-06-2009, 03:29 PM
Good book - where are you in it?
Just beginning The Phoenix on the Sword in the next half hour. I love these stories and make it a point to reread them every few years.

cigamnogard
04-06-2009, 03:30 PM
Is that one where he is a king?

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-06-2009, 03:33 PM
Is that one where he is a king?
I believe so, but it's been a few years since i've read this particular story.

cmac
04-06-2009, 03:35 PM
In January I picked up a monster of a book. "Night Angel" Trilogy Omnibus by BrentWeeks. Almost 1400pgs long but of course that is all 3 books combined and I'm glad I got it that way.

http://http://www.amazon.com/Way-Shadows-Night-Angel-Trilogy/dp/0316033677/ref=pd_bbs_sr_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1239050046&sr=8-2

here is a link to amazon for the first book and review

cigamnogard
04-06-2009, 03:39 PM
Yes, this omnibus situation/craze is fantastic.

tesral
04-06-2009, 05:37 PM
Those are authors discussing points for a workshop - not editors.

Exactly, people that know something.

cigamnogard
04-06-2009, 07:50 PM
Uhhhhhh....that might be up for debate...

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-06-2009, 07:54 PM
I'm seconding cigamnogard's response.

cigamnogard
04-06-2009, 08:02 PM
Thanks

tesral
04-07-2009, 12:19 AM
Uhhhhhh....that might be up for debate...

Writers know more than editors, that is a sure thing.

Otakar
04-07-2009, 09:08 AM
I was trying to think of the best fantasy I read. While on patrol (I was on a ship in the Coast Guard) a friend handed me a copy of Musashi. It was kind of like a Japanese King Arthur. I looked for it on Amazon before I made this post but the one that seems most like I remember has only 900+ pages to it and is by Eiji Yoshikawa. I think the one on Amazon must be abridged as the one I remember had well over 1000 pages. Still, I couldn't put it down. The characters came to life and the foreshadowing to each conflict kept me from putting the book down. Great material for a campaign with a Far East theme.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-07-2009, 09:46 AM
I was trying to think of the best fantasy I read. While on patrol (I was on a ship in the Coast Guard) a friend handed me a copy of Musashi. It was kind of like a Japanese King Arthur. I looked for it on Amazon before I made this post but the one that seems most like I remember has only 900+ pages to it and is by Eiji Yoshikawa. I think the one on Amazon must be abridged as the one I remember had well over 1000 pages. Still, I couldn't put it down. The characters came to life and the foreshadowing to each conflict kept me from putting the book down. Great material for a campaign with a Far East theme.
Good to know, Otakar. I have the book in front of me and is second to the top of my list to read. Right after my Centenary Edition of The Complete Chronicles of Conan, by Robert E. Howard. Between both books mentioned, i'm looking forward to nearly 2000 pages of enjoyment.

cmac
04-07-2009, 09:54 AM
I was trying to think of the best fantasy I read. While on patrol (I was on a ship in the Coast Guard) a friend handed me a copy of Musashi. It was kind of like a Japanese King Arthur. I looked for it on Amazon before I made this post but the one that seems most like I remember has only 900+ pages to it and is by Eiji Yoshikawa. I think the one on Amazon must be abridged as the one I remember had well over 1000 pages. Still, I couldn't put it down. The characters came to life and the foreshadowing to each conflict kept me from putting the book down. Great material for a campaign with a Far East theme.

Not really a Fantasy but the story of a Japanese Legend "Miyamoto Musashi", the greatest swordsman who ever lived. If I'm correct it when it was translated into English and published it was actually in several books, which I never owned. I did however obtain the monster version with all the books in one with almost 1000 pages. This is an Incredible Story.

It would be on one of my TOP 10 books I would recommend to anyone.
Linkage http://www.amazon.com/Musashi-Eiji-Yoshikawa/dp/4770019572
and a wiki entry http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miyamoto_Musashi

Another one that I thought was fantastic was Gates of Fire: An Epic Novel of the Battle of Thermopylae by Steven Pressfield (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/search-handle-url/ref=ntt_athr_dp_sr_1?%5Fencoding=UTF8&search-type=ss&index=books&field-author=Steven%20Pressfield). This is another great book and not fantasy..more like historical fiction. The story is pretty obvious from the title but it is told by a Slave to Xerces. This book was given to me by one of my previous Battalion Commanders.
Link http://www.amazon.com/Gates-Fire-Novel-Battle-Thermopylae/dp/055338368X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1239115786&sr=1-1

cigamnogard
04-07-2009, 03:52 PM
Writers know more than editors, that is a sure thing.

How so?

tesral
04-07-2009, 04:38 PM
How so?

Who is doing the real work?

cigamnogard
04-07-2009, 06:22 PM
Who is doing the real work?
Authors do not always get published but editors work day in and day out reading the material. So, on that analogy - who does the 'work'?

tesral
04-07-2009, 06:56 PM
Authors do not always get published but editors work day in and day out reading the material. So, on that analogy - who does the 'work'?

Having done both. (Surprise) Writing is far more work than editing. I would rather edit all day than write for an hour. Writing is sweating blood onto the page. Editing is dull and dry. I have never felt wrung out after a session of editing. I have felt like a used rag after a session of writing.

I have well over a quarter million words in fiction alone, not to mention 33 years of RPG work. I edited the Downriver Commodore Group newsletter for five years.

cigamnogard
04-07-2009, 07:05 PM
As an Editor then - who calls the shots?

tesral
04-08-2009, 12:16 AM
As an Editor then - who calls the shots?

The over paid, no talent bum of course, just like the rest of business. :cool: The people that do the real work are pushed around but those that don't.

Those that can, write
Those that can't write, edit.
Those that cannot write or edit, criticize.

Guess who makes the most money?

TAROT
04-08-2009, 01:28 AM
Guess who makes the most money?

Those who publish?

Otakar
04-08-2009, 09:07 AM
Do critics publish? ;)

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-08-2009, 09:52 AM
The over paid, no talent bum of course, just like the rest of business. :cool: The people that do the real work are pushed around but those that don't.

Those that can, write
Those that can't write, edit.
Those that cannot write or edit, criticize.

Guess who makes the most money?
I like it. I'll have to remember that one.

cigamnogard
04-08-2009, 02:57 PM
Editors are not quite the same as critics.;)

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-08-2009, 03:17 PM
Editors are not quite the same as critics.;)
Of course, the reverse is also true.

Sad thing now-a-days is that it is getting harder to get published, but thankfully there is self-publishing. It falls within my prognostication that one day later this century(yes, there will be some exceptions), with technology the way it is, publishing will die away like the Dodo bird and every author will self-publish. Of course, this will also be true with music. I, for one, cant wait. :cool:

cigamnogard
04-08-2009, 03:31 PM
I have the title of my memoirs down:
Memoirs of a Man and other barroom stories I should have kept to myself...

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-08-2009, 03:46 PM
I have the title of my memoirs down:
Memoirs of a Man and other barroom stories I should have kept to myself...
Good title. :rolleyes:

cigamnogard
04-08-2009, 03:53 PM
Just wait till I publish it! It should be a gooder!

Thriondel Half-Elven
04-08-2009, 03:55 PM
Just wait till I publish it! It should be a gooder!


it will be a what? whats gooder precious? Eh?

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-08-2009, 03:59 PM
It's filled with utter milk-tasting gooderness. Oh wait, that's udder. :eek:

cigamnogard
04-08-2009, 04:00 PM
:lol:

Thriondel Half-Elven
04-08-2009, 04:08 PM
hahaha. gotta go. good bye all

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-08-2009, 04:11 PM
hahaha. gotta go. good bye all
I need to sign off too. I got errands to do and am just having a particularly hard time pulling the computer cable out of my arm. Ouch!

tesral
04-08-2009, 05:06 PM
Editors are not quite the same as critics.;)

This is true. Editors do at least do something useful for a living.



Of course, the reverse is also true.

Sad thing now-a-days is that it is getting harder to get published, but thankfully there is self-publishing. It falls within my prognostication that one day later this century(yes, there will be some exceptions), with technology the way it is, publishing will die away like the Dodo bird and every author will self-publish. Of course, this will also be true with music. I, for one, cant wait. :cool:

Risk aversion. The publishing houses hate to do anything they don't see as a sure fire winner. However it can be pointed out (in vane to those it matters to) that every great success has been a terrible risk. For example The publisher thought that Lord of the Rings would be a complete flop, but published it because "It was a work of genius". No publishing house today would take the risk, no matter how wonderful they thought it was. The short term bottom line is the only thing that matters.

POD is the saving grace. Heck I have most of the tools right here. A better binding machine is the only thing I need. OK, a few more paper cutters and a large format printer would be nice a well.

However the old guard of both publishing and music are kicking and screaming their way out the door. They will not let go of the dying business models and are making our lives Hell trying to get laws passed to protect their ways of doing business, instrad of buying the clue and improving.

I persoanlly see no reason why the "record store" needs to carry stock. Why can't I step up to a koisk, order my album, and have it burned and the liner notes printed while i wait? Why not have books the same way? Order your book and it is delivered next day still warm from the printer.

Well it kind of cuts out the publishing house and the record company. When Joe Band can cut a profrssional sounding record in the garage, and Joe Writer can format a professional looking book in the garret, why do we need them?

Fact is we don't, and they are running scared.



I need to sign off too. I got errands to do and am just having a particularly hard time pulling the computer cable out of my arm. Ouch!

There is this new technology called a "jack", you might look into it.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-08-2009, 10:41 PM
This is true. Editors do at least do something useful for a living.




Risk aversion. The publishing houses hate to do anything they don't see as a sure fire winner. However it can be pointed out (in vane to those it matters to) that every great success has been a terrible risk. For example The publisher thought that Lord of the Rings would be a complete flop, but published it because "It was a work of genius". No publishing house today would take the risk, no matter how wonderful they thought it was. The short term bottom line is the only thing that matters.

POD is the saving grace. Heck I have most of the tools right here. A better binding machine is the only thing I need. OK, a few more paper cutters and a large format printer would be nice a well.

However the old guard of both publishing and music are kicking and screaming their way out the door. They will not let go of the dying business models and are making our lives Hell trying to get laws passed to protect their ways of doing business, instrad of buying the clue and improving.

I persoanlly see no reason why the "record store" needs to carry stock. Why can't I step up to a koisk, order my album, and have it burned and the liner notes printed while i wait? Why not have books the same way? Order your book and it is delivered next day still warm from the printer.

Well it kind of cuts out the publishing house and the record company. When Joe Band can cut a profrssional sounding record in the garage, and Joe Writer can format a professional looking book in the garret, why do we need them?

Fact is we don't, and they are running scared.




There is this new technology called a "jack", you might look into it.
A 'jack' you say. I must look into this 'jack' you speak of.

Otakar
04-09-2009, 09:12 AM
The short term bottom line is the only thing that matters.

Money is the root of all evil. Gaming must be good for me because I sure don't make any money at it. :laugh:



There is this new technology called a "jack", you might look into it.

Tesral, you're scaring me.:behindsofa:

tesral
04-09-2009, 10:47 AM
Money is the root of all evil. Gaming must be good for me because I sure don't make any money at it. :laugh:

For the record: "For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows." --Timothy 6:10 KJV

It isn't the money itself that is the problem.



Tesral, you're scaring me.:behindsofa:

That is what I do.

cigamnogard
04-09-2009, 01:54 PM
Ohhhh! A "jack" :laugh:

Mindbomb
04-09-2009, 02:37 PM
For the record: "For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows." --Timothy 6:10 KJV

It isn't the money itself that is the problem.



That is what I do.



HAHAHA!!! I was going to point that out too, but you did it MUCH more productively than I could have...

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-09-2009, 02:43 PM
I dont agree. That's like saying the gun is the problem. It's not about the tool, its about the human being wielding the tool, for money and guns, in and of themselves, are harmless and meaningless.

tesral
04-09-2009, 02:55 PM
HAHAHA!!! I was going to point that out too, but you did it MUCH more productively than I could have...

The Internet is your friend. Trust the Internet. Instant research whenever you need it.



I dont agree. That's like saying the gun is the problem. It's not about the tool, its about the human being wielding the tool, for money and guns, in and of themselves, are harmless and meaningless.

See above. It is almost always misquoted.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-09-2009, 02:58 PM
It still applies, and youre right, teral.

It's like hate: take away the race, the gender, the long hair, the(insert whatever), and the haters will still hate. They will just come up with another reason to hate. In the end, we're still talking about the human condition. (full circle on argument)

Money can represent success, for there will always be folks that have the ambition to be successful. Just as there will be others who find fault with the successful to hide their own blind jealousies. And yes, there will always be those lucky few that the universe is sweet on... the Charkie Harpers of the world. I have one such friend. Unfreakinbelieveable, what this guy gets away with, but i digress.

Humans have faults. I never want to go back to the dark ages, for the dark ages were just that-the darkest time in history. Live and let live, should be our motto.

End rant...motivated by the anticipation of lunch.

tesral
04-09-2009, 03:05 PM
It still applies, and youre right, teral.

It's like hate: take away the race, the gender, the long hair, the(insert whatever), and the haters will still hate. They will just come up with another reason to hate. In the end, we're still talking about the human condition. (full circle on argument)

"Those that do not love themselves cannot love others." --The Tao of Phoenix


Or will be, as soon as I add it.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-09-2009, 03:07 PM
That's actually not true, just as the opposite isnt true.

tesral
04-09-2009, 03:09 PM
Dude. Be original. Quoting others is not a sign of wisdom.

Who you you think wrote the Tao pf Phoenix?

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-09-2009, 03:10 PM
Not you. Ive seen that quote for years.

tesral
04-09-2009, 03:10 PM
Not you. Ive seen that quote for years.

Attribution please? If I didn't first state it that way I won't add it.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-09-2009, 03:13 PM
It's pretty common amongst the well read. I dont recall who said it now, but i have came across it before. Again, it isnt true, anyway.

cigamnogard
04-09-2009, 03:26 PM
http://quotationsbook.com/quote/35732/

tesral
04-09-2009, 03:26 PM
It's pretty common amongst the well read. I dont recall who said it now, but i have came across it before. Again, it isnt true, anyway.


Sadly, I find that it is true. Hate for a general other can usually be traced to self loathing. It is not that love and hate cannot abide in the same house. However, it's an ill fit and one usually will be thrown out. But if you hate yourself, you are not going to love anyone else.

Self hate is a sorry thing to see and you can't really do anything for them. The issue is within themselves and they must deal with it. Sometimes all you can do is get out of the way and try to avoid the side effects. It's never pleasant.

Life is not long enough for hate.



http://quotationsbook.com/quote/35732/

Thank you Cigamngard. The thought more completely expressed.

cigamnogard
04-09-2009, 03:29 PM
http://www.au.af.mil/au/awc/awcgate/jscope/french.htm

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-09-2009, 03:48 PM
Sadly, I find that it is true. Hate for a general other can usually be traced to self loathing. It is not that love and hate cannot abide in the same house. However, it's an ill fit and one usually will be thrown out. But if you hate yourself, you are not going to love anyone else.

Self hate is a sorry thing to see and you can't really do anything for them. The issue is within themselves and they must deal with it. Sometimes all you can do is get out of the way and try to avoid the side effects. It's never pleasant.

Life is not long enough for hate.




Thank you Cigamngard. The thought more completely expressed.
I agree that life is not long enough to hate, but it still doesnt change the fact that the statement is false.

cigamnogard
04-09-2009, 04:08 PM
Thank you Cigamngard. The thought more completely expressed.

Welcome!

agoraderek
04-09-2009, 04:39 PM
Money is the root of all evil. Gaming must be good for me because I sure don't make any money at it. :laugh:




Tesral, you're scaring me.:behindsofa:

1 Timothy 6:10 "The love of money is the root of all evil"

Money cannot be "evil". It's an object.

cigamnogard
04-09-2009, 04:46 PM
1 Timothy 6:10 "The love of money is the root of all evil"

Money cannot be "evil". It's an object.

I think "root" is a key word there.:laser::laser:

tesral
04-09-2009, 05:05 PM
I think "root" is a key word there.:laser::laser:

A man needs his roots.



I agree that life is not long enough to hate, but it still doesnt change the fact that the statement is false.

Error by assertion. Because you say it is false does not make it so. You have offered no counter example.

Bearfoot_Adam
04-09-2009, 06:13 PM
So I'm on book 7 of the Dresden books. I would like to add my recommendation. Butcher has created a good world. However I don't really think he has great dialogue. His villain banter is very cliche. And Dresden isn't quite the hard nosed detective I'd hope to be. But they are very entertaining.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-09-2009, 06:44 PM
A man needs his roots.




Error by assertion. Because you say it is false does not make it so. You have offered no counter example.
I run the rule of common sense

cigamnogard
04-09-2009, 06:45 PM
Argh! The Common Sense Rule

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-09-2009, 06:52 PM
XXXXXXXXXXXX XXXXXXXXXXXX XXXXX XXXXXXXXXXX XXXXXXXXXX XXXXXXXXXX XXXXXXXXXX XXXXXXXXXXX XXXX XXXXXXXXXXX XXXXXXXX XXXXXX.

Deleted everything stated for the subject is getting out of hand and away from DnD. Plus, i love talking about DnD and other rpgs.

cigamnogard
04-09-2009, 07:00 PM
HUh?:confused:
--- Merged from Double Post ---
Ah well if I am wrong I am wrong...:redface:

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-09-2009, 07:02 PM
HUh?:confused:
--- Merged from Double Post ---
Ah well if I am wrong I am wrong...:redface:
Has anyone seen The Tudor's? Some family members got me into the series and i have found it to be extremely well done. Have you checked it out cigamnogard? Damn good!

It's been a while since a series was on that i actually thought quite good. Is there any other series that have been produced that anyone can recommend?
--- Merged from Double Post ---

HUh?:confused:
--- Merged from Double Post ---
Ah well if I am wrong I am wrong...:redface:
Nah, we are all right from our own unique perspectives. Think of it as varying degrees of right.

cigamnogard
04-09-2009, 07:21 PM
No, but I really want to this full time school - full time work thing - sucks!

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-09-2009, 07:25 PM
I've lived it so i understand. If i have any wisdom having been there myself, i'd be glad to act as a sounding board.

Mindbomb
04-09-2009, 10:51 PM
Has anyone seen The Tudor's? Some family members got me into the series and i have found it to be extremely well done. Have you checked it out cigamnogard? Damn good!

It's been a while since a series was on that i actually thought quite good. Is there any other series that have been produced that anyone can recommend?
--- Merged from Double Post ---

Nah, we are all right from our own unique perspectives. Think of it as varying degrees of right.

My wife and all her friends are huge fans. I'll get into it occasionally but I have a hard time watching anything other than news, Simpsons, Futurama. HBO is exercising their option on the rights to George R.R. Martin's Song of Fire and Ice series though which will make me order a premium channel for the first time in my life. Should be better than the extended versions of the LotR movies....WOOT!!!!

tesral
04-10-2009, 05:43 AM
Has anyone seen The Tudor's? Some family members got me into the series and i have found it to be extremely well done. Have you checked it out cigamnogard? Damn good!

I saw them first run.



Nah, we are all right from our own unique perspectives. Think of it as varying degrees of right.

And varying degrees of wrong. There is such a thing as objective fact. Running counter to that can result in a great deal of pain.

I personally think the idea that "everyone is right in their own way" is a form of societal rot, and even evil to a certain degree. Yes, somethings are a matter of taste. And some things that some people will decry from the mountain tops are still a matter of taste. Gravity on other other hand. You cannot argue with gravity.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-10-2009, 10:50 AM
I saw them first run.



And varying degrees of wrong. There is such a thing as objective fact. Running counter to that can result in a great deal of pain.

I personally think the idea that "everyone is right in their own way" is a form of societal rot, and even evil to a certain degree. Yes, somethings are a matter of taste. And some things that some people will decry from the mountain tops are still a matter of taste. Gravity on other other hand. You cannot argue with gravity.
I believe i was clear when i said that everyone is right according to their own unique perspectives. That is not the same as saying that folks arent wrong. teral, you really need to actually read my comments before replying. Youre changing the meaning in order to make an argument. Not unlike a few days ago where you added in the word worthless, which i never said, claiming i stated it so you could find a basis for your argument.

Stop skimming and dont be so quick to judge, for everytime you do it, you prove me correct on my original argument. Youve already proven your price. That's gotta bug you for i see you are still being adversarial. Now, lets get back to talking dnd!

Changing meaniings and/or adding in words that arent there to make a point equals lying. Your price for pride.

You make it too easy, tesral. I admit, expected more.

I've tried to let this stuff go on more than one occasion, yet when i get back to the thread, i see that you once again have either misquoted me or have added in words to make an argument that no one other than you really cares about. Time for some self-reflection on why youre unable to discontinue the attacks. :eek:

Let's try this one more time, shall we? Okay...BACK TO TOPIC!

tesral
04-10-2009, 11:52 AM
You make it too easy, tesral. I admit, expected more.


Pot...kettle.

kirksmithicus
04-10-2009, 12:43 PM
Wow, that was rather...... deadpan :drum:

Malruhn
04-10-2009, 09:46 PM
When waxing philosophic, I've found that most of the time the attitude of "everybody is right" holds true, as most of the time it totally depends upon the point of the view of the speaker. When discussed from one point of view, it is quite obvious that one opinion is "correct," however, when discussed from another point of view, that one opinion is obvious to be WAY wrong.

And I've found that absolutes are rarely.

Can we go back to talking about D&D now?

I like OLD sci-fi, as it is (in my opinion) very close to fantasy in the manner in which it is written. HOWEVER, I've found that plots be plots, and I've been able to steal from fantasy AND sci-fi for adventure fodder. Lord of the Rings or Star Trek: TNG - it matters not... I'm able to take it all.

tesral
04-10-2009, 11:37 PM
I like OLD sci-fi, as it is (in my opinion) very close to fantasy in the manner in which it is written. HOWEVER, I've found that plots be plots, and I've been able to steal from fantasy AND sci-fi for adventure fodder. Lord of the Rings or Star Trek: TNG - it matters not... I'm able to take it all.

Some wag or another has said that "There are five plots". I don't exactly agree with the number, but yes, there are only so many ways to tell a story. There are three basic conflicts in drama. Genre aside it's Man vs. Man, Man vs Nature, Man vs Himself. Be that heroic barbarians or guys in pajamas on space ships.

For me you don't have to come up with a totally original plot, I don't believe that is possible anymore. You need to create characters I care about doing things that matter to me. Now I admit a preference for certain forms of sword and sorcery and pajamas in space ships. But that won't get me passed the first twenty pages unless something else is happening.

cigamnogard
04-13-2009, 04:37 PM
For me you don't have to come up with a totally original plot, I don't believe that is possible anymore.

Oh?

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-13-2009, 05:49 PM
I disagree. Of course, never say never is my motto.

tesral
04-13-2009, 06:01 PM
Oh?


I disagree. Of course, never say never is my motto.

Strip out the characters and setting and there are precious few plots. The figure 5 was kicked around but I think that is too few. It is the addition of character and setting that do mark one story from the next. So it is how you use the basic plot structure, and what characters and settings you invent that will mark your story as different from the next one.

I did not say there are no new stories, but no new plots. Different animal, or part of the larger whole if you will.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-13-2009, 07:02 PM
Seems pretty clear to me i was speaking about plots, not stories. Go back and reread. Also, deal with the fact and try to sleep at night that there are those that disagree with you.

Cover yourself up, tesral, for you passive-aggressiveness is showing.

tesral
04-13-2009, 11:09 PM
Seems pretty clear to me i was speaking about plots, not stories. Go back and reread.

I have a little more experience here Thoth, and I am going agree there are not many actual plots. I don't agree with some of the very low numbers. Strip off the details, and you will see this as well. Distill the story down to a single sentence. You will find that many seemingly different tales come down to the same sentence. The difference is in the details. The details make the story.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-14-2009, 12:40 AM
My answer still stands. Coming up with an original plot is still possible. Saying its not is like saying that everything that can be invented has been invented.

Btw, i find it interesting that you are assuming once again. I doubt very much you have more experience than i, and to make such an assumption w/o knowing me once again shows how lowhanded and insecure you can be.

Got an idea: i've tried to end this numerous times... one only has to go back through the thread logs to confirm this. Yet, every time i get back on this site, i find that you, once again, start the passive-aggressive stuff up, for you go and either twist things, add things in that were never said, add words in to change a meaning, or play Mr. Innocent, thinking that our readers are incapable of rereading the threads, is just an insult to everyone.

When i first signed on over a year ago to this site, one of my first threads was to tell you to back off, for you were being a real jerk to another member. For now on, avoid my posts. We have 7000+ members. Think you can avoid one persons post? huh? Can ya? Doubt it. Why? Because you have a price, and it eats you up inside knowing i know it.

So, once again, back to responsible posting.

tesral
04-14-2009, 01:07 AM
Btw, i find it interesting that you are assuming once again. I doubt very much you have more experience than .

How many fiction books have you written? I am ignoring the ad hominem.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-14-2009, 01:16 AM
38, 39 by end of month, science fiction and dark and gritty fantasy. 12 books a year for the last 3+ years. All having 300-350 pages. This, of course, doesnt include short stories(100's), modules(19), artwork(100's), and so on. Been doing this for over 20 years.

It's my biggest hobby.

How 'bout you?

tesral
04-14-2009, 11:57 AM
38, 39 by end of month, science fiction and dark and gritty fantasy. 12 books a year for the last 3+ years. All having 300-350 pages. This, of course, doesnt include short stories(100's), modules(19), artwork(100's), and so on. Been doing this for over 20 years.

It's my biggest hobby.

How 'bout you?

Where can I see this work?

Some quarter million words currently available to read. I mainly write shorts, but write until it's done, what ever the length. Oh and 33 years of Fantasy writing. I wish I still had it all. I don't know how many words I've lost over the years. Most of it on legal pads I no longer have. 19 modules? I wish. I've lost more than that.

agoraderek
04-16-2009, 03:20 AM
Oh?

If you know your Ecclesiastes (and I do), you'd know there is "nothing new under the sun". You can boil every story ever told into something like seven basic plots. Every story is a retelling of a different story, in one way or another. People can argue until they're blue in the face, but "plot" and "story" are not synonyms. "Stories" encompass several literary elements: plot, theme, tone, characterization, etc.

And, guess what? There aren't that many themes or tones running around either, or characters, for that matter. "Originality" comes from how someone uses the palate, not by creating the palate, considering that they haven't invented any new emotions or senses in a while. Substituting "Space ship" for "Fiery air chariot" is updating, not originating.

Whenever someone calls something "original", I'll sit there and break it down into its elements. Annnnd. No. It's been told before. Just with different window dressing.

And, before someone goes on about inventions and whatnot, everything that exists today is a refinement on something that existed yesterday. Nothing has been invented "whole cloth" in quite some time, I'm afraid.

It reminds me of when someone told me how "original" Kurosawa's work was. I had to point out to that person that Kurosawa stole most of his ideas from Western Cinema and Literature. He was crushed when he found out Yojimbo was stolen whole cloth from a Dashiell Hammett novel, Red Harvest.

tesral
04-16-2009, 08:09 AM
If you know your Ecclesiastes (and I do), you'd know there is "nothing new under the sun". You can boil every story ever told into something like seven basic plots. Every story is a retelling of a different story, in one way or another. People can argue until they're blue in the face, but "plot" and "story" are not synonyms. "Stories" encompass several literary elements: plot, theme, tone, characterization, etc.

And, guess what? There aren't that many themes or tones running around either, or characters, for that matter. "Originality" comes from how someone uses the palate, not by creating the palate, considering that they haven't invented any new emotions or senses in a while. Substituting "Space ship" for "Fiery air chariot" is updating, not originating.

Whenever someone calls something "original", I'll sit there and break it down into its elements. Annnnd. No. It's been told before. Just with different window dressing.


That is my point. How many stories fall under the general plot of Hero rescues ____ from ____. Lord of the Rings and Star Wars (The good three) are both John Campbell's' coming of age quest, lost prince and all. Lucas rolls them into one person, Tolkien splits the coming of age and the lost prince into separate persons. Both have a Wizard Mentor, Both have a world saving quest. a terrible evil, and so forth. You can sit down and tick point after point off from "The Hero with a Thousand Faces." They have the same plot. No one would argue they are the same story.

Tolkien said in his notes that he was attempting to create a new mythology. I would mark that a success. Tolkien is the basis, realized or not, for modern fantasy as we know it. His tales are the foundation that fantasy RPG stands on. No Tolkien, no D&D. No D&D, the rest wouldn't be here either Lucas has said that he was simply trying to retell a classic tale. I would sat that with the good three he pulled it off.

As an aside it seem that Farm Giles of Ham has a basis in fact. During the Crusades a Crocodile was sent from the Middle East to England. It got loose and went up river to Worming. the "Dragon" proceeded to wreck havoc.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-16-2009, 10:41 AM
Again, it's my biggest hobby, and something i'll continue with till the day i die.

I've often contemplated opening a fan-based web site offering everything i have, including links to others folks sites i felt brought something to the game, not unlike dragonsfoot. In all likelihood, i wont even get to it till i finish with my education.

I am writing a non-fiction account which i do intend to publish, if not from a legitimate source, then will self-publish through LULU or some other group.

As for now, all my material is in storage in so cal.

I also wish i had everything i've every done, but a few cross country moves and things disappear, including theft which i mentioned elsewhere on this site some time back. I wasnt too bothered about it at the time, but now-a-days, i wish i had everything ever lost. Oh well, spilt milk and all.

tesral
04-16-2009, 11:22 AM
I also wish i had everything i've every done, but a few cross country moves and things disappear, including theft which i mentioned elsewhere on this site some time back. I wasnt too bothered about it at the time, but now-a-days, i wish i had everything ever lost. Oh well, spilt milk and all.


You don't have to move cross country, just move. A lot of my stuff went the same way. The dog ate one bit i do regret losing, my cross section of Eyrie Keep. That thing took hours and hours to do.

I didn';t do the whole thing, just the Keep from the outside of the city ring to the city ring. The entire walled area is 25 miles across. At 50 feet to the inch that is a bit much. Half was cutaway to show elevations and construction.

Yea, a lot of work. I'm dangerous when bored.

cigamnogard
04-21-2009, 06:53 PM
The dog ate one bit i do regret losing, my cross section of Eyrie Keep.

For a writer with your 'orginal stories' this one made me howl! Plus your spelling is interesting for one so 'literate'.

tesral
04-21-2009, 07:11 PM
For a writer with your 'original stories' this one made me howl! Plus your spelling is interesting for one so 'literate'.

My typing sucks, and my spelling is only decent if I check and recheck. Stuff slips through. I have improved 100% from when I first started the pre-Internet posting. I also typed a lot worse and much slower.

Most of the time when decently awake I get the editing nailed. Most of the time. Uncorrected some of my sentences are barely English. We all have our crosses.

cigamnogard
04-21-2009, 07:15 PM
2 bear :)

Otakar
04-22-2009, 09:10 AM
Thank you Tersal, Thoth and Agoraderek. These last few posts have been a lot of fun. I enjoyed Lit classes in school. Although I don't have any talent in that vein myself I really like hearing about the dynamics of writing. This is definatley a good thread!

gajenx
04-25-2009, 08:15 PM
Personnally I learned that most of the D&D books are trash writing. I cannot get into any of their FR stuff and the more I read on their baby Elminster the more I want to be in campaigns where he is the final boss and dies slowly and painfully. I just hate that character and the Drizzit character as well, ,mostly as they are major Mary Sue archtypes and that annoys me. I know I prefer weirder fantasy writers it seems. I love Patricia Briggs, Ann Bishop (though her stuff is fairly dark and graphic you will either lover or hate, no inbetween), and enjoy the Dresden files as even though the character gains more stuff eh also looses an equal amount and even through the first 9 books I have still wanted to read more, soon to move on to book 10. I also like Kim Harrison as well. So I guess I am more moving to an Urban Fantasy world of choice over Classic Fantasy.

I do like Lewis and Tolkein's works, but Tolkein is overly wordy due to being paid by the word it seems from past research readings.

tesral
04-25-2009, 08:26 PM
I do like Lewis and Tolkein's works, but Tolkein is overly wordy due to being paid by the word it seems from past research readings.

I agree that Tolkein could have used a good editor. However, that said the book has a style, and the wordiness works for the story. It was never meant to be an afternoon read. One can easily say it was a book written in a slower and simpler time not obsessed with video game speed, and instant gratification. One can say that, And I think I will.

I have the single volume "Red Book" it is a toe breaker.

Otakar
04-27-2009, 09:35 AM
I do like Lewis and Tolkein's works, but Tolkein is overly wordy due to being paid by the word it seems from past research readings.

Wordy is definitely the truth when it comes to the Silmarillion. I felt like I was tying to get through a Middle Earth Old Testament. As for the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings, I thought those were "spot on".

I've seen a few things that seem to continue in the vein of Lord of the Rings. Anyone have any comments on that?

kirksmithicus
04-27-2009, 10:27 PM
Wordy is definitely the truth when it comes to the Silmarillion. I felt like I was tying to get through a Middle Earth Old Testament.

That's a very good way to put it.

Windstar
04-28-2009, 06:03 PM
I used to be a big fan of R.A. Salvatore, and in fact, I still read his novels. But, I'm tired of hearing stories of Drizzt and his friends. But, if you really want to give Salvatore another chance, I recommend his Demon Wars series, which is set in a world of his own making instead of Forgotten Realms where he has limited control.


FYI, Graphic Audio now has "Demon Wars" available on audio CD's.

But I agree he is a good author. I am surprised noone has mentioned Margret Weis/Tracy Hickman for the Dragonlance series. Personally I couldn't put them down and was always waiting in line for bookstore to open when the new one came out.:confused:

Malruhn
04-28-2009, 08:11 PM
I keep trying to tell myself that Weis/Hickman are sucky writers and only write crap diatribe for kids... but I read their crap like a starving man goes to peanut butter.

dammit.

I guess I'm just a kid with crap taste, and that's hard to come to terms with!

DM_Running_Farland_3.5
04-28-2009, 10:20 PM
OK. I started out with an attempt to read the entire thread. Five elevenths into it...couldn't do it.
SO. Here are my Thumbs Down and Thumbs Up.

Thumbs down: The cutesy ones. Anything that has a picture of a poorly drawn dragon on some large mushroom with a scantily clad woman holding on to it endearingly. And (while I loved them as a kid) make-your-own-adventure books. I can not stand entire novels written in the second person.

Thumbs up:

The Death Gate Cycle!!!!!!! by Weis and Hickman. This is where they (in my opinion) really got to flex their literary muscles. A world of their absolute own, no TSR breathing down their necks. AND AND AND each novel stands alone. I read them as I found them (usually in used book stores, they didn't do super hot, so they are hard to find) and they were fine. Rereading them in order does shed some light, though.

Detractors, to heck with you! The Wheel of Time stands as one of the best compediums of literature, not just fantasy writing, in the past 25 years. The great thing about it is that I reread them all every time a new book comes out and I have yet to catch -everything-. Love them.

Again...Gaiman. Genius. Especially The Sandman graphic novels.

On the subject of graphic novels...howsabout a shout-out for Garth Ennis? I recommend _-ANYTHING-_ by him.

That's it.
Word.

tesral
04-28-2009, 10:33 PM
I guess I'm just a kid with crap taste, and that's hard to come to terms with!

Ya know? You like what you like and there is no reason to be ashamed of that. I thought "The Enormous Egg" was a cool story when my son brought it home from school one day.

Differing tastes are why the bookstore has lots of titles.

kirksmithicus
04-28-2009, 10:41 PM
Tastes change over time as well. I might have liked a lot of the FR books when I was younger. It's just not my type of thing now though. I was a big fan of the book Starship Troopers.......so ya, you like what you like.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-28-2009, 10:57 PM
Another fan here for Starship Troopers. Good stuff. All three movies for it... Went downhill from the first. The cartoons.. mildly interesting.

GoddessGood
04-29-2009, 12:05 PM
The Death Gate Cycle!!!!!!! by Weis and Hickman. This is where they (in my opinion) really got to flex their literary muscles. A world of their absolute own, no TSR breathing down their necks. AND AND AND each novel stands alone. I read them as I found them (usually in used book stores, they didn't do super hot, so they are hard to find) and they were fine. Rereading them in order does shed some light, though.
The first four were stand alone, yeah, but I think the last three have to be read in order.

cigamnogard
04-29-2009, 04:34 PM
I keep trying to tell myself that Weis/Hickman are sucky writers and only write crap diatribe for kids... but I read their crap like a starving man goes to peanut butter.

dammit.

I guess I'm just a kid with crap taste, and that's hard to come to terms with!

I have stronger willpower and laugh each time I see they have published a new 'book'.
--- Merged from Double Post ---

Another fan here for Starship Troopers. Good stuff. All three movies for it... Went downhill from the first. The cartoons.. mildly interesting.
There's cartoons?

Windstar
04-29-2009, 04:56 PM
Has anyone heard of "Elantris"? Found it today and will be listening to it soon. Thanks

cigamnogard
04-29-2009, 05:33 PM
Never heard of it

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-29-2009, 05:42 PM
I have stronger willpower and laugh each time I see they have published a new 'book'.
--- Merged from Double Post ---

There's cartoons?
More like animated movies, a whole bunch of them called The Roughnecks. Each one dealing with the problems of the troopers on different planets. New bugs, new problems, oh my?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roughnecks_Starship_Troopers

Panthro82
04-29-2009, 06:11 PM
I cant believe how many people on here hate on the Wheel Of Time series by Robert Jordan! Seriously?!?!?!?! He weaves an intricate, elaborate storyline that builds into a beautiful climax that will floor you at the end of every book! He is a master at finishing a book.

Oh yea and someone on here was trash talking Akira Kurosawa and in the next sentence praising George Lucas? Ummmmm Lucas kind of lifted all of his material off of Kurosawa's body of work...lol Im not saying Lucas didnt do something great (I'll forgive him for episode 1...ughhhhhh), but even he admitted that he was HEAVILY influenced by Kurosawa. Most people that have read both of their bodies of work go a step further and think Lucas is saving face by saying only influenced.

DM_Running_Farland_3.5
04-29-2009, 08:19 PM
Hey Big-Headed One...
Will you marry me?

Dark
04-29-2009, 08:56 PM
Game sounds great the forum is very well done if I had some more time on my hands I would have jumoed at it.

Panthro82
04-30-2009, 05:26 AM
lol youre totally already married dude! We were brothers last week and now youre trying to marry me? Does it look like we live in Montana?!?! :P

DM_Running_Farland_3.5
04-30-2009, 10:49 PM
lol youre totally already married dude! We were brothers last week and now youre trying to marry me? Does it look like we live in Montana?!?! :P
Eh. You can visit me in jail. Nate and I are about to be rounded up by the MPs. It'll rock.
Do they allow gay conjugal visits in military prisons?

Panthro82
05-01-2009, 02:39 AM
eh. You can visit me in jail. Nate and i are about to be rounded up by the mps. It'll rock.
Do they allow gay conjugal visits in military prisons?

lmao! I smell a horrible FOX sitcom!

Windstar
05-01-2009, 04:28 AM
More like animated movies, a whole bunch of them called The Roughnecks. Each one dealing with the problems of the troopers on different planets. New bugs, new problems, oh my?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roughnecks_Starship_Troopers

I think I was around 15 when my father told me I was too old for cartoons, what would he think now with all the animations I watch or try to watch. Great thing thing about grandkids I get to watch cartoons with them, no body the wiser.....

tesral
05-01-2009, 09:09 AM
lmao! I smell a horrible FOX sitcom!

But you repeat yourself.



I think I was around 15 when my father told me I was too old for cartoons, what would he think now with all the animations I watch or try to watch. Great thing thing about grandkids I get to watch cartoons with them, no body the wiser.....

My Father was also of the opinion that one should eschew "kid stuff" Funny, but the Warner cartoons were not made for kids. I don't need grandkids as cover. I watch what I like. I also have more toys than when I was a kid. And they're all over the house and I can, because I own the house!

Baldwin Stonewood
05-18-2009, 05:23 PM
I read on average of two fantasy books per week (average length 310 to 350 pages). A couple of my favorite authors are:

David Gemmell (deceased) and his Drenai Saga (I did not care for the second book the King Beyond the Gate) but his Druss, Waylander and Skilganon characters are memorable.

Paul Kemp's, Ervis Cale, books are solid. Based in the FR setting, so they add depth to the campaigns. I often find myself unfolding the campaign setting map and looking things up in a source book for my own curiosity.

I've recently picked up and read Erik Scott De Bie's three books and I've enjoyed his writing. He is sort of edgy, mixes in a little horror into the FR setting.

I can not recommend: Robin Hobb. The Assassin's Apprentice was awful.

DM_Running_Farland_3.5
05-18-2009, 05:40 PM
Morgan Llewellyn is great!
Patrick and others...yeah.

Beaumont Sebos
05-18-2009, 06:24 PM
Book of the New Sun series by Gene Wolfe.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Book_of_the_New_Sun

My favorite series ever.

Also good by him is Fifth Head of Cerberus.

Even though you may be tempted... don't get his Wizard Knight series. Horrible.

Sascha
05-18-2009, 07:39 PM
Finished the latest Dresden Files book, Turn Coat, a couple weeks ago. <3<3 Jim Butcher's description of magic and wizards. Nowhere near enough Bob, but Listens-to-Wind's awesome makes up for it.

Mead
05-18-2009, 11:22 PM
I'm about half and half fantasy vs sci-fi, with small amounts of horror to spice things up.

Stacks I can see from here include Eddings, Tolkien, Brooks (although his work can get tedious it's still worth a re-read from time to time), Cook, Feist, Pratchett, Niven, GRR Martin, Gregory Maguire, Allan Cole's Timuras trilogy... but absolutely no Robert Jordan. Jordan is banned at the Meadhouse. First three books were pretty damn good, and then it really picked up steam and plowed headlong into the quicksand. Read two more and cancelled plans to read the rest. I've never regretted that decision.

Nor Piers Anthony, and now that I'm thinking about it I remember why I've never read any of the Xanth novels - I picked up his Dragon's Gold series and never touched his work again because of it. It was one of only two books I've ever thrown out rather than subject anyone else to them by gifting them. (the other was Benford's rape of Asimov's Foundation universe)

Paolini sometimes makes me wish I'd never heard of him, other times he impresses for his age. But not well enough for me to want to get his third book.

Another series I like even though it's total brain candy, is the TSR Ravenloft series. They're just fun. Good for a quick hour before work with a cigar.

TheRageOfGaia
05-18-2009, 11:38 PM
I agree with Sascha about the Dresden Files, I saw the show on Sci-Fi and thought it was decent (as far as the supernatural/fantasy genre goes) then I picked up Dead Beat. It was fast-paced, hilarious, subtle and overt, and the wizard twist on the "typical" hard-boiled detective is a lot of fun. The characters are all vibrant and the action is very well done.

I have a love/hate relationship with the Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan. At this point in the series, I only care about two of the five thousand storylines that are all happening concurrently. When I'm reading them, I fly through them, but after I am finished I think "Why did I read that?" I would wait for the twelfth and final book to come out, or you will end up in my shoes, with thousands of pages under your belt, no idea what happened anymore in books 1-11 and the culmination of it coming up around the corner.

Robert Jordan also passed away last year, which has obviously put a delay on the final book, an author named Brandon Sanderson was hired to finish them, and a friend (whose literary opinion I very much respect) says that his work is quote "amazing."

Tolkien's The Hobbit is good. You get more out of watching The Lord of the Rings in my opinion than actually trying to chop through them.

Terry Pratchett's Discworld comes highly recommended. I've only read one and it was just okay, but if you're in the mood for humor, that's where you should go.

By and large, my favorite fantasy series is George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire it's gritty, engaging, dark, violent, realistic, surprising, and addicting. His world is very gray, with every character having strengths and serious flaws.

Terry Goodkind's Sword of Truth is currently high up on my reading list, but I haven't started yet. I have also hear good things abour Ursula K. LeGuin, Harry Turtledove, Brian Jacques, and Neil Gaiman.

Robert E. Howard, Fritz Leiber, H.P. Lovecraft, and writers from that era were a massive influence on Dungeons & Dragons.

Mead
05-18-2009, 11:51 PM
I haven't read any LeGuin fantasy, but her Hainish Cycle is top-notch.

Panthro82
05-19-2009, 01:07 AM
I guess I'm just suprised by how few people like The Wheel Of Time Series. I've only read 7 of them but I really really love them. Most of them the first 200 pages are tough to get through, but it is almost all relevant to the end of the book. The endings to his books, Im sorry but there is no better author at ending a book then Robert Jordan(RIP)

TheRageOfGaia
05-19-2009, 01:25 AM
Panthro - I think I would agree with that last part. The books always end well. It took me three tries to make it through the first 200 pages of the first book, which, I think is a turn off to alot of people. I want to be sucked in to a book right away. Jordan doesn't deliver that. The other problem I have with the books is that he rambles quite a bit, and by book 11 things are getting fairly convoluted. This Brandon Sanderson guy is going to have his work cut out for him.

That being said, Jordan draws on a HUGE amount of mythical and legendary sources. Each of the three main characters draw parallels from Norse gods, which I think is very cool. Rand = Tyr, Perrin = Thor, and Mat = Odin. While, I think all fantasy does this on some level, Jordan does it quite well.

And like I said in the last post, while I'm reading them, once I get past those first 200 pages, I can't put them down. But it's a project.

That's why I wouldn't recommend them to someone just getting into the fantasy genre, like The Lord of the Rings, The Wheel of Time (to me) are books you read because of the impact they've had on writers, the genre, and nerds like us in general.

Sascha
05-19-2009, 01:53 AM
I agree with Sascha about the Dresden Files, I saw the show on Sci-Fi and thought it was decent (as far as the supernatural/fantasy genre goes) then I picked up Dead Beat. It was fast-paced, hilarious, subtle and overt, and the wizard twist on the "typical" hard-boiled detective is a lot of fun. The characters are all vibrant and the action is very well done.
Wow, you started with Dead Beat? Zombies will never be the same now :) (Also, the climax there where Bob (yes, Bob~) shows his incredible badassery is pure win ^_^)

Panthro82
05-19-2009, 02:02 AM
agreed gaia

TheRageOfGaia
05-19-2009, 02:03 AM
Yeah, I was at the store buying toiletries, because I was going cross-country on vacation, and I realized I didn't have anything to read. So I searched high and low through the book selection at my grocery store and in there amongst the Nora Roberts, smut, and Dean Koontz I found Dead Beat.

Bob is very cool, and the end of Dead Beat was good, even though it was only my first experience with him. I can imagine how much cooler it was after a few novels full of smartass skull talk.

I like Murphy too. But I didn't like the way they cast her in the TV show. I'm reading Small Favore now, which, I'm not sure if I wanna keep reading since I skipped a few. Though, it doesn't seem to matter where you pick up.

BrotherDog
05-19-2009, 03:40 AM
You make this Bob fellow sound allot like Morte from Planescape:Torment.

Has anyone else ever read "the Coldfire Trilogy" by C. S. Friedman? I am very surprised that most of friends that like Jordan actually like this series too.

Jordan bores me to tears, in fact, I find him even dryer than Moorcock. Sure he has some interesting concepts with his version of the eternal champion thing, but please. It's so bland. Burroughs did it better, and with his usual flair. I just hope that Pixar doesn't butcher John Carter too badly.

Geez, I ramble doont I?

Sascha
05-19-2009, 06:48 AM
Bob is very cool, and the end of Dead Beat was good, even though it was only my first experience with him. I can imagine how much cooler it was after a few novels full of smartass skull talk.
It's not just his snark, it's that until then, his power's mostly an informed ability. We hadn't been shown how capable Bob really is.


I like Murphy too. But I didn't like the way they cast her in the TV show. I'm reading Small Favore now, which, I'm not sure if I wanna keep reading since I skipped a few. Though, it doesn't seem to matter where you pick up.
They're enjoyable as self-contained stories, but yeah, the amount of character development is staggering by then, and not just Harry's. I'd say go and read back up to Dead Beat, then continue in order, if you're still interested. Fast reads and the evolution of Harry from near chew-toy to getting some respect is plain awesome. (Not to mention the wealth of supporting characters that didn't appear; Ivy is cute as heck in her first appearance, and downright scary-awesome in the latest :))


You make this Bob fellow sound allot like Morte from Planescape:Torment.
Lots of similarities ^_^ Wouldn't be surprised if Jim Butcher derived inspiration from it, given how pop culture savvy his world is.

Bob's a spirit of intellect, residing in a runed-up skull; he assists Harry in researching magic theory and beings from the Nevernever (spirit world, basically). He's also a giant lech :P I would say he's the main source of snark, but that's doing practically every other Dresden character a disservice ;)

templeorder
05-19-2009, 08:38 AM
In terms of long chronicles George R. R. Martin beats them all for me (and i hear HBO has begun filming a season!). I did not get into LOTR, i found it tedious, and the Hobbit - well, it was a childs story, so i wont judge it based on that. I loved the Black company series for the characters, the world was ok, the last few books... meh. The original REH Conan stories are great. There's soooo many good novels, but its hard to find a consistently good series. By the fourth book, i was hoping the Wheel of Time would roll right over Jordan - gods how tedious and washed out it became. And there's so many niches of fantasy its hard to know what to properly compare. Prior to George R. R. Martin's fire and ice works, only Gene Wolfe had really 'put the zap on me' - the Urth of the New Sun cycle is some of the best fantasy written (though its a blend of fantasy and science fiction - maybe even more of the later). Historical fantasy has some amazing writers in it as well, i like Judith Tarr immensely.

tesral
05-19-2009, 10:17 AM
Robert Jordan also passed away last year, which has obviously put a delay on the final book.

I've heard that can hamper your output. It never stopped L. Ron Hubbard however.

Baron_Samedi
05-19-2009, 12:24 PM
The Night Angel Trilogy by Brent Weeks...
The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss...
The Chronicles of Corum by Michael Moorcock...
The Warhound and the Worlds Pain by Michael Moorcock...
The Grey Mauser Series by Fritz Leiber...
The Works of Robert E. Howard, (Conan, Kull of Atlantis, Bran Mak Morn...)
The Works of H.P. Lovecraft...
The Works of Lord Dunsany...

Fantasy Readers really need to get away from this media tie-in drek. You need to find out where this stuff originates from and stop spouting Tolkien and Jordan as great literary works. And no, Dragonlance doesn't count as literature as much as regurgitation counts as lunch...

TheRageOfGaia
05-19-2009, 03:03 PM
I've heard that can hamper your output. It never stopped L. Ron Hubbard however.

They say the only successful writer is a dead one.

Speaking of which, there are a few "mainstream" authors who have dabbled in fantasy. Clive Barker, who is better known for his horror, I think, has written fantasy, and so has Stephen King. And, then there is T.H. White, I'm not sure whether he would be considered a fantasy author or not, but his Once and Future King is one of the greatest fantasy novels ever written.

Panthro82
05-19-2009, 03:06 PM
Fantasy Readers really need to get away from this media tie-in drek. You need to find out where this stuff originates from and stop spouting Tolkien and Jordan as great literary works. And no, Dragonlance doesn't count as literature as much as regurgitation counts as lunch...

LOL and I guess the fact that Tolkien and Jordan have each sold millions upon millions of books and have legions of fans all around the world means nothing? So tens of millions of people don't know what they're talking about...but you do. hmm

Baron_Samedi
05-19-2009, 03:33 PM
Yeah, just like Christopher Paolini sold millions of copies of Eragon and the Inheritance Cycle...yeah everyone loves it, i liked it too, when it was called Star Wars...

Sales does not make one great...stories that endure for decades...if not a whole century make them great...those who know good fantasy...never quote Dragonlance, or Eragon, or any other of these type novels. Tolkien endures because of his length and attention to detail. Its a good series, however he draws heavily from Icelandic Sagas...which if you read them, read almost like the Lord of the Rings...only about a thousand years before. His historical and academic work bear better merit than that. My problem with the Wheel of Time is that its hook is the same as many other series...O woe to me, there are wraiths, or beasts, or orcs or some great evil from the north, west, east, or south, that has come into our village, hamlet, or homestead...

I realize that there are only a few story types in the world throughout the history of literature...i'm just asking for people to sit back and think...but i guess that's asking too much...

TheRageOfGaia
05-19-2009, 03:37 PM
Fantasy Readers really need to get away from this media tie-in drek. You need to find out where this stuff originates from and stop spouting Tolkien and Jordan as great literary works. And no, Dragonlance doesn't count as literature as much as regurgitation counts as lunch...

Where would you say that it originates? Certainly not with Michael Moorcock and Brent Weeks. Fritz Leiber, Robert E. Howard, and H.P. Lovecraft were all contemporaries of J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis and the rest of the Inklings. It is these authors who are typically credited as the "beginning" of modern fantasy literature.

But even they were predated by Lord Dunsany, George MacDonald, and Charles Perrault. Hans Christian Anderson wrote fantasy which inspired John Ruskin to write The King of the Golden River which inspired Tolkien to write Gandalf.

And these were inspired by writers from the Enlightenment and Romantic periods; Horace Walpole, Daniel Defoe, Samuel Richardson, Henry Fielding, Lord Byron, Mary Shelley, and Madame d'Aulnoy all wrote fantasy, as well as some of the first novels.

Yet they weren't the first. Medieval Romances such as Edmund Spenser's The Faerie Queene and Sir Thomas Mallory's Le Morte d'Arthur as well as the Matters of Britain, France, Spain, and Rome all contain massive amounts of fantasy. Robert Jordan's term San'greal is an adaptation of the French term for The Holy Grail. Obviously these works have had a huge impact on fantasy.

But they aren't the beginning either. Beowulf, The Mahabarata, The Book of One Thousand and One Nights, The Divine Comedy, the Ramayana, Journey to the West and The Odyssey are all fantasy, but even all of these are predated by what might very well be the oldest work of fiction known to mankind; The Epic of Gilgamesh.

All of these works of fantasy have inspired countless generations of fantasy authors who have executed their works with varying degrees of skill. While I agree that your average Dragonlance novel is not worthy of the same respect as A Midsummer Night's Dream, I would recommend anyone looking to get into modern fantasy start with Tolkien, Lewis, Howard, Leiber, Lovecraft, or their contemporaries, and move forward until they find what they like. Then they should read that, whether it's Jordan, Star Wars novels, or Dracula.

Baron_Samedi
05-19-2009, 03:46 PM
That's the point i'm trying to make Rage...most people don't even realize where the origins of Fantasy come from, that they lie in the origins of epic poetry, where most people of high school age get distracted, because 'its boring.'
I didn't neglect those title you brought up...i was trying to at least cover the best of contemporary literature...that gave rise to those who inspired the authors that everyone thinks is so rad...like Jordan, Paolini, and Tolkien...I'm not saying that they're not good, but that there are just better writers with truly original ideas...except Paolini, he's just a two bit hack...

Sascha
05-19-2009, 04:16 PM
What's the old saying ... if we stopped writing when we ran out of original ideas, literature would have died with the Greeks.

Part of what makes those older works harder to digest is, in fact, the language. They are products of their times, and translations - when necessary - are products of their times. It's rather like our legal system, written in language that isn't commonplace and takes more work to digest than most are willing to put in for leisure. Amazing stories they may be, but the language itself is the barrier to enjoyment.

Baron_Samedi
05-19-2009, 04:20 PM
With media being the way it is, i'm wondering if we should have stopped with the greeks...

my final word is...before you declare the greatness of a work, research its origins...

i'm not asking for pure originality...2000 of literature not withstanding...just don't be so obvious in your plaguerism...

TheRageOfGaia
05-19-2009, 04:25 PM
Yeah. I think you hit the nail on the head though, when you said that it's boring. Epic poetry, Shakespeare, even into Romanticism and the Gothic novel are difficult to read. In most cases, you have to study them, to get the full effect. And while there are people like you and I who enjoy sitting down with a piece of writing we have to chew on, I think most people read fantasy for fun. I know I typically fall into that category. When I pick up Martin or even Jordan, I just want to be entertained.


Even so, I think that a lot of these novels will be tomorrow's classics.

And I agree with Sascha, I'm curretnly reading Plato, but my translation is from the late 40s or early 50s, it's an old book I inherited from my great uncle. But it is by far the most difficult thing I've ever read. I guess it's preparing me for Atlas Shrugged.

Sascha
05-19-2009, 04:38 PM
So, no Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, then? (Which I still need to get my hands on, dangit; after I move, perhaps~) Clearly it steals near-wholecloth from Austen's original ...

In full disclosure, I can't read Tolkien for the same reason I couldn't read Steinbeck: the prose was set to glacial speed. Moorcock's Elric saga read faster, but still lacks the punch of pulp-styled works, which is really where my attention lies.

Panthro82
05-19-2009, 05:40 PM
Baron I understand your point but you come off very uppity in making it. It is as if everyone on this site is an idiot and you're the second coming trying to teach caveman about fire. I would be willing to bet most all of us have read everything you mentioned and then some. And all of the works you mentioned based on your own point were rip offs of something else so...Even the greeks ripped off their material from sources before them. All the way back to the beginning of time. I am not however telling you that you should research the art of story tellings true origins by reading caveman writings on walls or checking out ancient egyptian hieroglyphs...

Baron_Samedi
05-19-2009, 06:11 PM
Guess i can blame working for years in a major chain bookstore, listening to endless numbers of people telling me how this book is this generations 'Lord of the Rings'....gets a little pedantic...

Mead
05-19-2009, 09:03 PM
Guess i can blame working for years in a major chain bookstore, listening to endless numbers of people telling me how this book is this generations 'Lord of the Rings'....gets a little pedantic...

Are you sure that's the word you'd like to use there?

Baron_Samedi
05-19-2009, 10:06 PM
A thousand apologies,

irksome

irritating

even banal...

pedantic would refer to those pointing out others grammatical mis-uses...

TheRageOfGaia
05-19-2009, 11:52 PM
No Steinbeck, Sascha? :hurt:

He's one of my favorites. Though I will admit that The Grapes of Wrath was very slow. Still, Of Mice and Men is great! I also liked Travels With Charley, Cannery Row, and The Acts of King Arthur and His Noble Knights which was only partially finished :(

tesral
05-20-2009, 12:45 AM
LOL and I guess the fact that Tolkien and Jordan have each sold millions upon millions of books and have legions of fans all around the world means nothing? So tens of millions of people don't know what they're talking about...but you do. hmm

Actually, no they don't mean anything. That is called "An appeal to popularity". A classical logical fallacy. One man's meat is another man's poison. If we all liked exactly the same thing, we wouldn't need more than one book in the bookstore.



my final word is...before you declare the greatness of a work, research its origins...

The "greatness" of a work is in the eye of the person reading it. Nothing else really matters. Yes, good literature endues, for which we can be grateful. It means we get a chance to enjoy it. One person not liking Jordan does not spoil it for everyone that does. However, he is entitled to not like Jordan.

I think Stephen R. Donaldson and Mercedes Lackey both need to take a pill. I cannot read either one.

Sascha
05-20-2009, 02:52 AM
No Steinbeck, Sascha? :hurt:

He's one of my favorites. Though I will admit that The Grapes of Wrath was very slow. Still, Of Mice and Men is great! I also liked Travels With Charley, Cannery Row, and The Acts of King Arthur and His Noble Knights which was only partially finished :(
Heh, didn't even get through the first few pages of Of Mice and Men. :P My sister had to wade through The Grapes of Wrath and lamented every word.

Honestly, I can't remember anything I had to read from junior year English beyond that; previous years were better, what with All Quiet on the Western Front and Shakespeare (Romeo and Juliet, meh; Twelfth Night, great~!). Best required reading, though, came from Intro to Psychology: Jane Goodall's In the Shadow of Man.

TheRageOfGaia
05-20-2009, 04:11 AM
Sascha: If the world suddenly decayed into Fahrenheit 451 and everybody had to choose a book that they would become so that it didn't fade away, I would choose Of Mice and Men. Actually, I might choose Shakespeare's Henry V (which is much better than R&J or Twelfth Night :sorry:)

But for the most part, I agree, school literature was always awful. I especially hated The Great Gatsby and I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings.

Tesral: Hooray for logical fallacies! Go debate team! :high5: Large groups of people are exceptionally stupid, you should never trust their judgement. Why do you think our government is always so bad! :D

Sascha
05-20-2009, 11:41 AM
Hehe, think my favorite of Shakespeare's is A Midsummer Night's Dream ... something about faeries causing mischief ^_^ But if it was a Fahrenheit 451 situation, most likely I'd pick Poe; The Raven is just too danged beautiful to see burn.

Valdar
05-20-2009, 12:34 PM
I just got my hands on Mario Acevedo's third Vampire P.I. book (The Undead Kama Sutra). His books are a fun read, and much funnier and less cheesy than the titles would indicate (one review compared the humor to Dave Barry, for better or worse.)

tesral
05-20-2009, 01:29 PM
But for the most part, I agree, school literature was always awful. I especially hated The Great Gatsby and I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings.

I think schools seek out the worst slogs to label as classical literature. And they wonder why kids don't read?



Hehe, think my favorite of Shakespeare's is A Midsummer Night's Dream ... something about faeries causing mischief ^_^ But if it was a Fahrenheit 451 situation, most likely I'd pick Poe; The Raven is just too danged beautiful to see burn.

Henry V, Midsummer Night's Dream. Shakespeare reads poorly, it needs to be played. I Love Henry V, and Midsummer night was my introduction to theater.

This story shall the good man teach his son;
And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by,
From this day to the ending of the world,
But we in it shall be remember'd;
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,
This day shall gentle his condition:
And gentlemen in England now a-bed
Shall think themselves accursed they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day.

Ghodd. It stirs the blood it does.

Rook
05-20-2009, 01:43 PM
Lots of good suggestions made here by others. For something perhaps a little more esoteric, try Nightwatch, by Sergei Lukyanenko. He has created a vivid, though convaluted, world in which supernaturally powerful others coexist with humanity in contemporary Russia. Excellent take on the politics of good and evil with lots of intrigue, magic, and exploration of the grey areas of life. Very three-dimensional, motive-driven characters, but fun and easy reading as well.

TheRageOfGaia
05-20-2009, 02:30 PM
Shakespeare most definitely needs to be performed, or at the very least, read out loud for any real enjoyment to take place.

I was in Henry V in college as Corporal Nym, and it was an awesome experience from learning the dialect to watching the majority of the play from the monitor back stage. But, I was on stage for the St. Crispin's Day speech and our King was incredible, we all had goosebumps.

Last year I directed Romeo & Juliet for my middle school students, which meant a lot of in depth research into costumes, setting, language, customs and culture, etc. of the time period so I could explain it to thirty kids aged 11-15. We didn't have the money to really do period costumes or make a terribly elaborate set, but we are masters of stretching a buck, lol, and actually the kids did very well considering the difficulty level and their age. (Using fencing foils and having "fight school" which is way more manly than "choreography" helped get the boys interested a lot more).

I highly suggest, even if you're not an actor, getting involved in a community theatre production of Shakespeare, you'll have a lot more fun than you'd think.

tesral
05-20-2009, 03:34 PM
"Get thee to a nunnery, to a nunnery go." Has nothing to do with nuns.

Sascha
05-20-2009, 04:46 PM
Shakespeare reads poorly, it needs to be played.


Shakespeare most definitely needs to be performed, or at the very least, read out loud for any real enjoyment to take place.

Oh, most certainly. Sophomore year we were assigned bits of Romeo and Juliet to analyze and perform; it really isn't enough just to read, not having heard it. Actually, that's a metric I have for anything not in modern English - if I read it aloud, does it flow better than silent reading?

It's also the reason I love the film and television; some lines are weak, but put them in the right actor's mouth, and they're brilliant. (Sadly, the reverse is also true; see just about every complaint of the Storm/Toad exchange in the first X-Men film :P)

Mead
05-20-2009, 10:34 PM
A thousand apologies,

irksome

irritating

even banal...

pedantic would refer to those pointing out others grammatical mis-uses...

Sigh..

Panthro82
05-20-2009, 11:01 PM
lol mead I know exactly what youre talking about

TheRageOfGaia
05-21-2009, 01:46 AM
irritating

even banal...

And now pointless (and mispronounced) frivolity...

Heh. You said anal.

BrotherDog
05-21-2009, 02:59 AM
... You said anal.

Does that included of those pidgeons that are usually involved?