Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Books Read These Last Couple Weeks
Best Served Cold, by Joe Abercrombie
Thus far this year I would still say Abercrombies Last Argument of Kings is the best book of the year. BSC has many strong points but it doesn't top LAOK.
Because the characters while intriguing are not better characters. Several are side supporters from the First law Trilogy and its cool to see them expanded here but it was not nearly enough to top the earlier series.
Now I must say Abercrombie is still tops for great twists and absolute swashbuckling-that said I must voice warning for you all (Melanie) in the neighborhood of I gave warning for LAOK. BSC is much stronger/worse/graphic etc. More of every vice you can shake a stick at. I thought Abercrombie was upping the ante in LAOK over Before They Are Hanged which was up over The Blade Itself and his stuff has grown exponentially enough to make me worry for the next book and its possible ratings. I do still think him the best new fantasist but I just don't want erotica with it.
Fantastic ending, exactly what I hoped in that I was surprised by numerous twists and turns and great reveals at the end - just gentle readers beware.
Prince of Persia: The Graphic Novel,)
by A.B. Sina (Writer) and LeUyen Pham & Alex Puvilland (Art) I have never played the game, never will-I don't have time for video games anymore-and might have not picked this up but that it was on the discount rack at B & N and thumbing it quickly decided it looked like a good S&S romp and it is. Sina who was born in Iran offers up a decidedly eastern style tale detailing a theme of struggling against destiny and he does it from a variety of viewpoints and times. I was quite taken with it.
The Gunslinger: The Dark Tower Book 1, by Stephen King.
Not counting On Writing, this was the first honest to goodness King book I have ever read. Most of the time I have not cared for his movie adaptations I liked Stand By Me (The Body) a lot and the mini-series The Stand was alright. But by and large I have not cared for the movies and thus had little desire to read the books. Finally decided I might as well begin what he considers his opus though. I am mixed about it-at times I think it brilliant and other parts are WTH? I just didn't flow to me to call it a great book. I came away deciding that it must be a chain of dreams that he pieces together. Why do I think that? Because I dream like this and rarely do I think if I wrote it all down would anyone want to read it. I do keep a book of dreams and nightmares which I record dreams in though-maybe someday.
Blood Money, by Elmore Leonard
This is a collection of short western stories by a very respected author who is often praised for his dialogue. I wasn't seeing it in these. Leonard famously said he leaves out the boring parts of stories that people skip, sorry but I felt like this had a lot of it. I thought the writing was good but I just didn't care a lot of the time-there was nothing to make me feel for these desperadoes-which I can like a desperado* see Best Served Cold.
The Lyric Age of Greece, by A.R. Burn
I have a set of these on Greek History and the Lyric Age is the one chronicling the oldest history of Greece. I was reading to brush up on some rewrites for my Spartan/Mulekite novel Bless The Child and Burns does a great job
in presenting a myriad of details on ancient Greece. Its great for source material on Sappho, Solon and others which will be appearing in the novel.
All in all a good collection as far as reading went just for the sake of my kind of variety and weirdness. My reading has slowed down because of all the side projects I am working on---short stories for a variety of fantasy venues and the book trailer for Heroes of the Fallen: very excited about it - extreme thanks to my sister-in-law Erin West artiste.