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Re: What are you currently reading?
Continuing my Foreigner Universe travels with C.J. Cherryh's Destroyer, having just finished Explorer.  I'll get back to reading non-Cherryh books some day, I suppose...
Why?  ;)

May 11, 2015, 08:11:03 PM
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Re: What are you currently reading?
it is our literacy book for next term.  Features a ninja cat.  The kids should enjoy it.
Are you a teacher, Wolfie? :)

Haven't we discussed this before?  Yep.  I am a Primary School teacher in South London.

May 28, 2015, 10:31:52 PM
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Re: What are you currently reading? I just read Vicious by VE Schwab. Absolutely stunning book, couldn't put it down. Going to be moving straight onto her most recent one, A Darker Shade of Magic.

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July 11, 2015, 09:44:37 AM
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Re: What are you currently reading?
I just read Vicious by VE Schwab. Absolutely stunning book, couldn't put it down. Going to be moving straight onto her most recent one, A Darker Shade of Magic.

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It's totally different, Titus, but still really, really good. V. E. Schwab is my new favourite writer. Vicious is one of the best things I've read this year. You may also like Chuck Wendig's Miriam Black books if you haven't already read them. Vicious made me think of them.

July 12, 2015, 01:37:24 AM
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Re: Top Manga / Anime?
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Thinking about Psycho-Pass, I just remembered a few other SF anime series I liked: Ergo Proxy, which is a SF suspense mystery involving virally intelligent androids, and Real Drive (RD Sennou Chousashitsu), which is kind of info-utopian cyberpunk.

Wow, you just added two new series to my To Watch list. :)

July 30, 2015, 01:39:53 AM
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Re: What are you currently reading? I'm in the middle of Sabriel by Garth Nix at the moment. I'm quite enjoying it. It's different to the usual fare.

I do feel a bit like I'm reading things I don't really want to be reading in order to complete my annual challenges, though. Sabriel was a bit of a late substitution to at least try to get something lighter in there. I must try not to take on so many mini-challenges next year.

It's a tricky one, though, sometimes the books I push myself to read are the ones I end up loving the most. My particular trick is repeatedly putting something off over the course of a year or two, and then finally reading it and realising what an idiot I have been.

November 04, 2015, 04:23:26 PM
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Re: What are you currently reading? Finished two books today.

Talion: Revenant by Michael A. Stackpole. This is one of the best standalone fantasy novels I've ever read. It didn't do anything groundbreaking, but it was a great story with a main character I enjoyed reading about.

The Skull Throne by Peter V. Brett. I actually think this book was probably the best since the first one. The last two were majorly disappointing. This one still had its sections that I think could have been much shorter, but it did regain some of what the series originally had.

January 19, 2016, 11:52:54 PM
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Re: What are you currently reading?
Talion: Revenant by Michael A. Stackpole. This is one of the best standalone fantasy novels I've ever read. It didn't do anything groundbreaking, but it was a great story with a main character I enjoyed reading about.

I'm a big fan of Mike's work from way back. If you liked the book, you should also check out the Dragoncrown Cycle (which is another fantasy series he wrote). It's a fun series, lots of action, and while there are always some similarities to other works, it did go a few places I didn't expect. The first book is Fortress Draconis, and there is a prequel (The Dark Glory War) but you don't have to read that to get into the series.

January 20, 2016, 03:27:30 AM
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Re: What are you currently reading?
Disagree! Of course, grimdark being the fancy stuff at the moment means that there are a shitload of awful books in that genre, but those who do the grimdark right (Martin, Hobb, Abercrombie, Lawrence and a few others) have far better characters than Sanderson.

I think that Sanderson would have been considered below-average if he was judged only in characters and writing/prose. Fortunately, he managed to make very good stories with excellent twists, and his magic systems are second to none (maybe second to Jordan, at worst case). Which is the reason while I would put him somewhere near the top.
Hobb as Grimdark?! Never seen that before. :o Her characters go through hell, sure, but the overall tone of the story was never grim, dark, and hopeless to me.

Out of the others, the only one I've read is Abercrombie. (Note: ignoring Shattered Sea, which isn't really grimdark imo) His characters are miles better than Sanderson's, but I found it impossible to care about what happens to them. Because of that, I didn't enjoy his books all that much. I'm pretty sure that's what Ryan was saying too.  :)

Definitely agree with your opinion of Sanderson. He has some really noticeable flaws, but his strengths more than make up for them!

Maybe proto-grimdark, if you like. She (and Cook, and Martin) did grimdark before grimdark existed.

Seriously, you would barely find a character in fantasy books who suffered more than Fitz. And there is pretty much everything present (bar rape, which anyway isn't present that much even in other grimdark books) in Liveship Traders that is used in recent grimdark books.

I find Abercrombie brilliant. Probably my favorite author in the genre. Glokta, Ninefingers and Bayaz are all time greats when it comes to fantasy characters, but the best thing about his books are that even minor characters are done extremely well. In the other side, every person in his world being a prick can become boring at times.
I think you have a different definition of Grimdark to what I take it as then! The definition I just found via google fits what I always thought of it:
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Grimdark is a subgenre or a way to describe the tone, style or setting of speculative fiction (especially fantasy) that is, depending on the definition used, markedly dystopian or amoral, or particularly violent or realistic.
Violence is a major part of it, but the overall mood of despair is equally (or more) important. Grimdark for me means all hope is lost, anyone with a spark of good in them inevitably is going to die painfully or be completely corrupted or something equally bad, and anyone with no morals and evil tendencies wins. When the whole world is like that, it's hard for me to get interested in the story.

Hobb's books are completely different to that. There's a lot of darkness and violence, but there's always hope. And while there's never a really clear-cut "happy ending", it's more bittersweet than bad. For me that feels much closer to real life than anything else, which is probably why it sucks me in so much more.

January 21, 2016, 06:06:50 PM
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Re: What are you currently reading?
Just started reading Annihilation by Jeff Vandermeer.  Already seems like my kinda book.

Tell me if it gets good, I got bored by the stoic voice when the MC starts describing her garden pool and left it for another book, to pick up later.

February 19, 2016, 10:26:16 PM
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