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Topics - Itachimaru

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Introductions / Hello again!!
« on: January 07, 2016, 08:32:42 PM »
I think I was one of the first readers to arrive here at  FF . Back then it was about 25-30 people, I almost shit myself seeing the amount of usernames (900 something pages full of them)...

Anyway never stopped reading ofcourse, just different things to do but I really enjoyed some of the discussions here, so getting back in it and trying to find some new stuff to read.

See you out there :-)

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Introductions / It's been a long time...
« on: February 22, 2013, 01:45:29 PM »
Hey, what's up!!! I think I was one of the very first members here. Left a good 2 years, but I've got more time now and looking for new books to read...

Be seeing you guys!

Greets

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Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Just bought...
« on: February 20, 2011, 07:44:49 AM »
No place to share my newly acquired goodies, hence...

So, just bought :
  • A devil in details - K.A. Stewart
  • The half made world - Felix Gilman
  • The sentinel Mage - Emily Gee

Which should I read first, any recommendations?

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Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / The Lost gate by Orson Scott Card
« on: January 24, 2011, 09:04:42 PM »


Official Blurb:

Danny North knew from early childhood that his family was different, and that he was different from them.  While his cousins were learning how to create the things that commoners called fairies, ghosts, golems, trolls, werewolves, and other such miracles that were the heritage of the North family, Danny worried that he would never show a talent, never form an outself.

He grew up in the rambling old house, filled with dozens of cousins, and aunts and uncles, all ruled by his father.  Their home was isolated in the mountains of western Virginia, far from town, far from schools, far from other people.

There are many secrets in the House, and many rules that Danny must follow.   There is a secret library  with only a few dozen books, and none of them in English — but Danny and his cousins are expected to become fluent in the language of the books.  While Danny’s cousins are free to create magic whenever they like, they must never do it where outsiders might see.

Unfortunately, there are some secrets kept from Danny  as well.  And that will lead to disaster for the North family.


So, my first book by Orson Scott Card. Someone here said that he wasn't that good, so that kinda lingered in my head. Yet, right from the start the book is fast paced. Danny North is the main character, yet parallel with Danny there is another story which has a main character called Wad in a different world.

The story is about magic off course, in modern day times. The story takes the very familiar route of the "nobody" that turns "boy-wonder". When he discovers his powers, they aren't really welcome in his family and in the rest of the world. The story takes a very predictable route after that. His worldbuiding isn't that special (little bit on the weak side), strange plottwists that don't do the story any good. The story about Wad is kept in the background which is a shame cause it would have given the book more depth.

Even though the book has it's flaws. It is paced very good. Some of the twists come out of nowhere, but when you get over that you're (me) still curious as to where it leads. His magic system is an original one. Although it could have used some more explaining. Not something you can take for granted. It is not a very thick book, so the fast paced feeling could also be a little rushed. With some more work this could have been a very interesting book. Now it is a very common fantasy novel, a good read but nothing that really blows you away.

3/5 is my rating for it. There are supposed to be 2 more books coming out. I'll still be reading them, cause they have potential and I just hate to leave a series unfinished...


Next book would have been the Wind up girl, but I'm stuck at page 65. Think I'll be going for the easy read and choose The Fallen Blade by Jon Courtenay Grimwood

Greets

P.S.: I don't like to tell about the contents/story of a book in a review. Almost every review I read spoils or gives stuff away that I would have like to find out for myself. So I try to keep it to a minimum.So short review it is, hope it helps someone choose a good book.

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Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch
« on: January 16, 2011, 08:57:58 AM »



Blurb:
My name is Peter Grant and until January I was just probationary constable in that mighty army for justice known to all right-thinking people as the Metropolitan Police Service (as the Filth to everybody else). My only concerns in life were how to avoid a transfer to the Case Progression Unit - we do paperwork so real coppers don't have to - and finding a way to climb into the panties of the outrageously perky WPC Leslie May. Then one night, in pursuance of a murder inquiry, I tried to take a witness statement from someone who was dead but disturbingly voluable, and that brought me to the attention of Inspector Nightingale, the last wizard in England. Now I'm a Detective Constable and a trainee wizard, the first apprentice in fifty years, and my world has become somewhat more complicated: nests of vampires in Purley, negotiating a truce between the warring god and goddess of the Thames, and digging up graves in Covent Garden . . . and there's something festering at the heart of the city I love, a malicious vengeful spirit that takes ordinary Londoners and twists them into grotesque mannequins to act out its drama of violence and despair. The spirit of riot and rebellion has awakened in the city, and it's falling to me to bring order out of chaos - or die trying.

Let me start first by saying I'm a big fan of real (current) time fantasy. The story unfolds in modern day London. Peter Grant is a "copper" who's going to get transferred to a "shity" job in the police department. One night he's standing guard over a murder scene when a ghost speaks to him. After the meeting with the ghost he get's a job as Detective Constable and a trainee wizard. From there the story begins!!

The way of writing is quite similar to Jim Butcher's Dresden files. Yet, if you expect a Jim Butcher story you'll be disappointed. It isn't as fast paced as his American opposite. The story builds slowly, the magic is very low profile, not blow everything to bits kinda magic. For me it should have been a bit more on the magic part, but then again that's the connection your mind makes with the Dresden files, so try not to do that.

The humor is very much like the American counter part. It's the kind of witty gritty, slightly sarcastic stuff I've come to like in my books. The main character (Grant) is firmly developed. Some others are left in the dark a bit. Chief Nightingale (his master) for instance, is kept a little strange and less developed. Probably on purpose for the next books.

What is a great feature in the book ,is that it is very recognizable, at least for someone who's been to London a few times. Since the author is a real "londener" he talks about his city with passion. Since a few years that "London vibe" has taken hold of me as well. It is very nice to be reading a magical book on modern day London. Groups of school kids in Covent Garden, Crammed up in the Nothern Line near Camden, Shaftsbury avenue, Chinatown,...
This get's you sucked in the story and really makes you walk the footsteps of Constable Grant. 

Conclusion:Definitely worth picking up. Specially for people form the UK,for "Londoners" (if that's the way to write or say it) it's a must read. For the rest of you, if you've read Butcher it is very difficult not to make certain connections (see my review) which is in the disadvantage of the book. For people without the Butcher knowledge it is a very fresh, original and fun story to read. Near the end I wasn't able to put it down, so read till 4AM to finish. Most of the time that says something about a book.

My quotation for it : 4/5 not going to give more because I think he can boost it up a notch with book 2 "Moon over Soho" coming to your bookstore in April 2011!! Hope this helps a bit.

Next book: "The lost gate" by Orson Scott Card

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Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Elantris
« on: January 08, 2011, 08:37:54 AM »
Since you guys are going nuts over the Mistborn Serie. Has any of you read Elantris by Brendan Sanderson? It's a one-volume book, which I read before I read the mistborn series and is quite good. Any thoughts on this?

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So I just finished those two books and I thought why not share them with you lovely people..

Official blurbs:

The 10 thousand

The world of Kuf, an ancient Assurian Empire, dominant, prestigious and thought to be invincible, is about to be shaken to very foundations. An exile from the empire, the Great King’s brother hires a force of Ten thousand elite mercenaries of a legendary race known as the Macht to take the throne by force. But when their employer is killed, The Ten Thousand find themselves abandoned. This is the story of their fight for freedom, and marks the start of a brand new series by one of the finest writers of fantasy.

The Crown of the blood

He had brought his master’s Empire to the furthest reaches of the world. All had fallen before him. Now he longs for home.
But home isn’t what it was. Could it be that everything he’s fought for all those years has been a lie?
A sweeping fantasy of immense battles, demonic magic and dark politics.

*****************************************************************************************************************

As you can see from the blurbs, both books are about fighting battle's. Roman style battle's. Legion, centurion, spear, phalanxes, shield,... all words found in abundance in the two books.

The main character in The ten thousand is Rictus, a warrior that saw his city destroyed and thus joined the mercenaries to go and fight in the world of Kuf (far, far away...). Off course lots of stuff happens during their time there, which I'll not spoil here. What I can say is that there is no magic in this book. It's about spirit, skill and muscle power (push!), so the people who like some "unnatural" things in their books. This is not for you. It reads very fluently, the character development is ok. Storyline is very straightforward. It is not a book where you should expect major surprises, but besides that it was very entertaining.

The main character in The crown of the blood is Ullsaard. Ullsaard is a general not of the blood. Meaning he worked his way up to a very high and esteemed position, but he'll never be one of them. Ullsaard is fighting with his legions in the middle of nowhere when he's called back to the capital. On arrival there he gets caught up in politics and things go South from there. There is some magic in this book albeit very little. A brotherhood (monks, guardians of the religion)have the power to call on some spirit of the old ages. Which tell's them the future and grands them immortality (or very old age). The book is very straightforward and fairly predictable. That doesn't take away that it has some nice points in it. (sisters turn into wives and so on). The main character in my opinion isn't really developed. The reasoning for doing this or that is not always clear and there are some side characters that could give the story more "schwung" if properly worked out. It ends with a small bang (surprise).

My point to make (took me a while I know) if you're interested in these types of books, what book of the 2 would I recommend:

First off, The crown of blood doesn't have a map. If you talk about going south and escaping the army in pursuit, It makes it a lot easier to visualize with a map. The ten thousand has a map, so easy to follow the course of the advancing army. The character of Ullsaard is not someone you can easily connect with and for me it slowed the reading down a lot. Both books have more coming. Book 2 of the ten thousand is already out (Corvus).

So in my humble opinion go for the ten thousand! Reads more fluently, has the same type of battle's, story fits together better, the world building is better and is very easy to relate to. If I were to give points, 3.5/5 for the ten thousand, 3/5 for the crown of blood

Hope at least someone finds this a bit helpful. I'm gonna continue reading "Corvus". This forum is killing my readtime, damn it!

P.S.: If you can't decide just buy the both of them like I did... (Why did I wrote this then???)

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Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Jim Butcher
« on: January 01, 2011, 11:39:08 PM »
So anybody here that reads Jim Butcher?

I've read both his series.

Dredsden Files:

For me it is one of the best series to follow because:
  • Each year there's a new book
  • It reads like, watching a movie, fast paced, nothing complicated but still very entertaining
  • Magic system is semi-original and good character development
  • But most of all for me, it's the witty responses, the sarcastic responses, the "scr** you" attitude

What makes a book or serie good is the fact that you're sitting around in your bedroom reading and you get tears in your eyes from laughing that hard over some scene in a book. That's how drawn into the story you get with the Dresden files, for me it really feels like a movie experience, all so very real and easy-going.

Furies of Calderon:

His "real" fantasy work. If you've read the Dresden files it is something totally different and unfortunately not as good.
In the furies you can see his "lack" of worldbuilding skill (at least compared with the masters). That stick's out. His magic system is something quite unique and it keeps you interested in the first 3 books (2 actually but I'm a fan so...) After that is just becomes an all goes well with are hero book. Witch killed the series in my opinion. It had great potential but somewhere along the way it got to rushed (specially book 4,5).

Does this mean it's a no read? Most definitely not, it is still quite enjoyable for those at least that don't mind being able to predict half of the series after 2 books...

Hope this helps a little. Not one person to whom I have pointed out the Dresden Files has been disappointed. So go pick up the Dresden files,they are cheap! and good!

Greets

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Don't know where to post the February book so I'll do it here:

The name of the wind by Patrick Rothfuss!

His highly anticipated second novel comes out march 1st, so  a re-read could be handful, why not do it in group??


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Since there is a recommendation section there should be a "not to" section as well. Allthough this will probably be a little subjective still maybe it will make you think twice before buying the book!


My not to buy book for now is:

Tome of the undergates by Sam Sykes

The book just doesn't get started, the story is akward, I put it away after 100 pages, maybe I should have read more but it just doesn't appeal to me and I can't read a book that doesn't do it for me the first few pages...

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