October 26, 2020, 09:37:14 AM

Author Topic: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds  (Read 11265 times)

Offline DDRRead

Re: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds
« Reply #30 on: September 23, 2015, 01:03:56 PM »
[Katherine Kurtz's Deryni books have just been forgotten, but were prominent in the genre back in the day.

Which is a shame. I'd never heard of them back when doorstep quest fantasy ruled the day and I was wading through the Belgariad, but read the first set recently and thought they were great.

Offline Yora

Re: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds
« Reply #31 on: September 23, 2015, 01:36:32 PM »
Thanks for the link, @Jmack, I hadn't been aware of that article but even more interested in the comments. No wonder people are annoyed with Ursula le Guin, I am really surprised that she wrote so critically and seemingly without clear understanding.
It could be easily attributed to an assumption that publishers are serving as quality control to keep the junk out and letting only good material become available to readers. In which case it would be just snobbish. (Since it's from a writer who makes good money by being already accepted by publishers and fewer people getting in.)
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Offline DrNefario

Re: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds
« Reply #32 on: September 23, 2015, 02:11:53 PM »
I haven't read the article, but Le Guin is 85 years old. I think she's allowed to be out of touch.

I read the first four Earthsea books quite recently and thought they were great. The first was the weakest, for me.

(I've been debating whether to buy the new SF Masterworks omnibus of two of her short story collections, but have held off for now because... I'd rather have an ebook and it's paper-only.)

Offline JMack

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Re: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds
« Reply #33 on: September 23, 2015, 02:16:55 PM »
Thanks for the link, @Jmack, I hadn't been aware of that article but even more interested in the comments. No wonder people are annoyed with Ursula le Guin, I am really surprised that she wrote so critically and seemingly without clear understanding.

I hadn't read the ocmments; they'r quite interesting.

I also realize that I had not notices that for BS, LeGuin (presumably) meant Best Seller. I, of course, assumed it meant something cruder. Maybe she meant both?  ;)
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Offline Lady Ty

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Re: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds
« Reply #34 on: September 23, 2015, 02:23:31 PM »
I haven't read the article, but Le Guin is 85 years old. I think she's allowed to be out of touch.


Good point, and I remembered this speech she made in support of Fantasy and also sticking up for authors v publishers. I think this is another aspect of her opposition to Amazon, as a huge capitalist publisher.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Et9Nf-rsALk&sns=tw
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Offline m3mnoch

Re: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds
« Reply #35 on: September 23, 2015, 03:20:02 PM »
I haven't read the article, but Le Guin is 85 years old. I think she's allowed to be out of touch.


Good point, and I remembered this speech she made in support of Fantasy and also sticking up for authors v publishers. I think this is another aspect of her opposition to Amazon, as a huge capitalist publisher.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Et9Nf-rsALk&sns=tw

yeah.  she's crazy.

when you're a person who says this about amazon:
Quote
Its ideal book is a safe commodity, a commercial product written to the specifications of the current market, that will hit the BS list, get to the top, and vanish.

it shows a fundamental misunderstanding of the long tail.  amazon's bread and butter is not the best seller list -- it's the long tail.  just like her bread and butter does not come from her latest best seller, but from the aggregate of her fairly vast back catalog.

i really don't understand how an author with so many works can miss that.

Offline ultamentkiller

Re: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds
« Reply #36 on: September 23, 2015, 10:25:01 PM »
I know Salvatore's been mentioned, but not the series I would've thought. The only one I've read was The Demon Wars Saga, and man it was awesome! It got mentioned in a post about books that draw readers into the fantasy genre, but very briefly.
Maybe that's not his best series though, and if not, I need to check out his others.

Offline Lady Ty

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Re: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds
« Reply #37 on: September 24, 2015, 12:13:59 AM »
There was a series that started publication in 1988 called The Keltiad by Patricia Kennealy. She later called herself Patricia Kennealy Morrison claiming to have been married to Jim Morrison of The Doors. Later still she wrote murder mysteries as Patricia Morrison

The Keltiad starts off with The SilverBranch, The Copper Crown and The Throne of Scone.

These first three I found enthralling at the time because they combined Arthurian Legend, Space Travel, Interplanetary War, Celtic Myth, Druidic Magic, Brehon Law, plus Sword and Sorcery.

Hmm, may have left something out. :D.  Oh yes, a bit of romance thrown in as well but not too much. :D  That may sound terrible but it combined to make good reading.

Not only have they fallen out of favour, they are now out of print, but if you come across them in a second hand book shop, I recommend you pick them up and read, you may enjoy. They are certainly different.  There were a further three called The Hawk's Grey Feather, The Oak above the Kings and The Hedge of Mist.  These were similar but prequels as far as I remember, had lost their edge and a little confusing.

Has anyone else here read them ? @Elfy, do you have them perhaps?

« Last Edit: September 24, 2015, 12:25:07 AM by Lady_Ty »
“This is the problem with even lesser demons. They come to your doorstep in velvet coats and polished shoes. They tip their hats and smile and demonstrate good table manners. They never show you their tails.” 
Leigh Bardugo, The Language of Thorns: Midnight Tales and Dangerous Magic

Offline eclipse

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Re: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds
« Reply #38 on: September 24, 2015, 03:16:27 AM »
Throne of Scone, that sounds nice with jam and tea
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Offline Elfy

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Re: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds
« Reply #39 on: September 24, 2015, 06:15:46 AM »
There was a series that started publication in 1988 called The Keltiad by Patricia Kennealy. She later called herself Patricia Kennealy Morrison claiming to have been married to Jim Morrison of The Doors. Later still she wrote murder mysteries as Patricia Morrison

The Keltiad starts off with The SilverBranch, The Copper Crown and The Throne of Scone.

These first three I found enthralling at the time because they combined Arthurian Legend, Space Travel, Interplanetary War, Celtic Myth, Druidic Magic, Brehon Law, plus Sword and Sorcery.

Hmm, may have left something out. :D.  Oh yes, a bit of romance thrown in as well but not too much. :D  That may sound terrible but it combined to make good reading.

Not only have they fallen out of favour, they are now out of print, but if you come across them in a second hand book shop, I recommend you pick them up and read, you may enjoy. They are certainly different.  There were a further three called The Hawk's Grey Feather, The Oak above the Kings and The Hedge of Mist.  These were similar but prequels as far as I remember, had lost their edge and a little confusing.

Has anyone else here read them ? @Elfy, do you have them perhaps?
I've read the Keltiad. Long time ago now so I can barely remember it, but I do recall Patricia Kennealy's claim that she had at one time been married to Jim Morrison.
She's still writing the mysteries.
I will expand your TBR pile.

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Offline JamesLatimer

Re: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds
« Reply #40 on: September 24, 2015, 11:50:47 AM »
I remember going into Borders (in the US) back in the day and the fantasy portion of the SFF shelves being dominated by Piers Anthony, Terry Brooks, Eddings, Goodkind, Jordan, and then people like L. E. Modesitt and Tad Williams as well.  Lots of huge books with garish covers--the bigger the book or series the easier it stood out!   I couldn't really tell you what women there were, because as a stupid teenage boy I ignored most of them, but pretty sure Robin Hobb was there.  I did manage to pick out a copy of a lesser-known book called A Game of Thrones, though...

My impression of the UK was that Raymond E Fiest was much more prominent, and also David Gemmell and Pratchett, whereas Anthony, Brooks, Goodkind, Modesitt were almost completely absent.

This is all impression, though, I'm sure I'm forgetting some obvious ones as well.  Unfortunately, it doesn't seem trivial to get the numbers...

Offline Roxxsmom

Re: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds
« Reply #41 on: September 26, 2015, 05:39:40 AM »
A couple of writers who seem to have fallen off the radar: CJ Cherryh wrote more SF than fantasy, but some of her books are the latter, and others meld the two. She's one of the best SF and F writers to come out of the 70s and 80s, in my opinion. She's still writing her Foreigner books, which are a very long-running series that seems to be profitable enough to continue publishing, but I rarely run into people who read them. She did recently revisit her Merchanter Alliance universe with a new Cyteen book, but she rarely seems to get remembered on reader polls or those lists of "Authors everyone should read." A darned shame, as her world building is excellent, imo, her characters deep, and her plots have a nice balance between grit and optimism.

Mercedes Lackey is another. She's written a lot of stuff, and her books were once very popular, but it seems that if one admits to liking her work, one is more likely to get jeers than cheers (or even simply no response at all) in fantasy forums these days. I think one issue for her is that she really pumped a lot of titles out per year, and there was a point (for me) where I'd have this odd feeling I'd read a book before, even if it was brand new. I like her earlier stuff, though.

Another writer who seems to have plunged into obscurity is Piers Anthony. He was very popular with fantasy nerds when I was in high school and college, in spite of his work being rather sexist (in my opinion), but no one seems to read him anymore. I think one reason for this lies in two very controversial and squickly books he wrote that portrayed sex between adults and children in a sympathetic way: Firefly and Tatham Mound.

Offline Elfy

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Re: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds
« Reply #42 on: September 26, 2015, 06:25:10 AM »
A couple of writers who seem to have fallen off the radar: CJ Cherryh wrote more SF than fantasy, but some of her books are the latter, and others meld the two. She's one of the best SF and F writers to come out of the 70s and 80s, in my opinion. She's still writing her Foreigner books, which are a very long-running series that seems to be profitable enough to continue publishing, but I rarely run into people who read them. She did recently revisit her Merchanter Alliance universe with a new Cyteen book, but she rarely seems to get remembered on reader polls or those lists of "Authors everyone should read." A darned shame, as her world building is excellent, imo, her characters deep, and her plots have a nice balance between grit and optimism.

Mercedes Lackey is another. She's written a lot of stuff, and her books were once very popular, but it seems that if one admits to liking her work, one is more likely to get jeers than cheers (or even simply no response at all) in fantasy forums these days. I think one issue for her is that she really pumped a lot of titles out per year, and there was a point (for me) where I'd have this odd feeling I'd read a book before, even if it was brand new. I like her earlier stuff, though.

Another writer who seems to have plunged into obscurity is Piers Anthony. He was very popular with fantasy nerds when I was in high school and college, in spite of his work being rather sexist (in my opinion), but no one seems to read him anymore. I think one reason for this lies in two very controversial and squickly books he wrote that portrayed sex between adults and children in a sympathetic way: Firefly and Tatham Mound.
I tend to agree about Cherryh, but Lackey is still very prolific. She seems to put a book a year out under her own name and I'm not even counting the ones she co-writes (in fact I recently read one, and it's the start of a series), she's also highly respected for her sheer professionalism among fellow fantasy writers. Eric Flint in particular loves working with her for things like his 1632 shared world concept.

Piers Anthony is 81 years old now, and so understandably his output has lessened in recent years. He seems to confine himself mostly to Xanth books, but still sells fairly well. I read a lot of him years ago, but kind of went off him when I got bored with the formula that he wrote to, something that he quite openly admitted to.
I will expand your TBR pile.

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Offline DrNefario

Re: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds
« Reply #43 on: September 26, 2015, 09:33:27 AM »
I used to be a big fan of Cherryh. I guess I still am, but I totally lost my place in the Foreigner series-of-serieses, and haven't been able/willing to devote the necessary time to working out where I got to. I seem to remember that I saw there was a new one out, then noticed there was another earlier one I didn't seem to have read, and then when I read that, I was a bit suspicious that I'd missed one before that.

I always preferred her SF to her fantasy, too. The fantasy tended to be in a different voice, which didn't work so well for me.

I also read a lot of Piers Anthony as a teenager. He always had quite a lot of sexual content. That was part of the appeal for me then, and probably also the reason I grew out of it.

Offline Davis Ashura

Re: Books that have fallen out of favor with the crowds
« Reply #44 on: September 26, 2015, 01:19:34 PM »
Harry Harrison was very popular back in the late 80's with his Stainless Steel Rat series. but now, few have heard of him. The same goes for Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle. They are well-known, but there was a time when the release of their latest book was treated with the same level of importance and excitement as Jordan's books once were. Jennifer Roberson had a pretty solid career going, and people who read them, still remember Tiger and Del with great fondness, but again, not so popular now.
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