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Messages - ScarletBea

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I don't really like to make NY resolutions, for books or otherwise, so I'll just state what I want generally to happen: to continue to discover great books, be amazed and fascinated with the great fantasy that exists in the world, not only new books but also the old ones that I haven't read yet.

I'm not going to say anything about re-reading... I know that will be bottom of pile when faced with new stuff, hehe

(still 3 days to go, so I think I will have read 62 books this year - it's no race, I don't set myself targets, but if I go around this rhythm, lots of discoveries expect me in 2014 :D)

Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Re: Prologues
« on: December 28, 2013, 01:28:53 PM »
I would much rather begin with Our Protagonist struggling in the ashes of a ruined world because I would be thinking What was the terrible catastrophe that did all this? I will be hooked to Our Protagonist's perspective and I will be intrigued. And then later on, when the author skillfully doles out the answer, revealing it piece by piece to both me the reader and to Our Protagonist who's struggles I have come to care about, it will feel like a reward. It will feel like it means something.

See, personally I really don't like this, the flashback-type story, when it starts with the apparently main event and then works backwards. It's something that really bugs me, whether in books or films, or TV.
Give me a prologue anytime ;D

Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Battles - understanding, reading
« on: December 28, 2013, 10:16:57 AM »
Battles in fantasy books are a given - well, almost always - so I assume people like reading about them.
Is this true?
Do you notice if the battles aren't realistic? Do you learn new words (the 'technical' stuff) reading about them?
And do you prefer battles with or without magic?

This topic came about because yesterday I visited (again) the Royal Armouries museum (in Leeds), and I just love the 'Tournament' area. They've got amazing pieces there, including the original Field of Cloth of Gold armour made for Henry VIII that was never used (because they changed the rules at the last minute), and it was actually analysed by NASA when they were building space suits because it completely covers the entire body yet it lets the wearer move about easily and fight (and win!).
Anyway, looking at those pieces just brings all the fantasy books battles alive, and actually also explains many details that I couldn't understand before: the weight on the body, the visibility through the helmet, the strength you had to have, and so on.
I'm not a big fan of battles and mindless violence, but as I read more fantasy, and then see these objects live, I'm getting more and more into it.
It also makes me realise how some writers just use their words/art perfectly to describe battles/fights, and make everything seem alive, while others are much more 'bland' and 'boring'...

I wonder if this museum (or other similar ones) is part of some writers' research - maybe it should be, hehe

(They also have there the original swords made for/used in The Lord of the Rings movies, and they are amazing, especially when you compare them to real swords, and read the explanation for the differences.)

Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Re: What are you currently reading?
« on: December 26, 2013, 10:07:12 PM »
I finished Winter (William Horwood) and I'm now halfway through Rosie Garland's The palace of curiosities, which is being quite good - Victorian circus/odd people combined with a man who can't die, cuts and heals himself (can't wait to know more about him).

And here, on a site that I quite enjoy reading, A Dribble of Ink:

(I have to say that I refuse to watch the movies now as they've turned a great small book into a huge battle blockbuster)

As someone who hates/finds pointless 'social media' (by which I read twitter and facebook), I wonder if I can say that I quite like authors with their own sites/blogs that they keep updated about their books and writing process.

And of course, hurrah for those who are very nice and reply to my mails ;D (thanks, Tom Lloyd!) or those that are here on Fantasy Faction and answer my questions (Miles Cameron, thanks for commenting on your (lack of) geographical accuracy, hehe!).
And A.J. Dalton does all this too, but I call him a friend-via-books, so I'm biased ;D - great site, anyway

Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Re: Prologues
« on: December 26, 2013, 06:42:06 PM »
The prologue is part of the book - why on earth wouldn't you read it?

And I would add "obviously".

Unlike some of you, I actually quite like when the prologue is not directly linked to the start of the book; when it's written in a different style, under a different POV, showing light on something only hinted at during the rest of the book; and sometimes I re-read just the prologue once I finish the book, and it suddenly means something different from when I first read it...

I got Ursula Le Guin's "The Earthsea quartet" and Brandon Sanderson's "Final Empire" (Mistborn 1).

And Waterstone's gift card, still not used - I got Anne Lyle's number 2 and 3 with the £18 I had in my Waterstone's card, following points collected and the "10 stamps gives you £10" card I finished last month ;D

A bit like SuperBob, I wonder if people really believe Tolkien started all fantasy writing...
I feel Tolkien is a bit of a name that non-fantasy readers like to use to show they're "up there with the geek crowd", a bit like mentioning the Hitchhiker's Guide to Galaxy, or nowadays, 'Game of Thrones', like non-fantasy people call ASoIaF.
They just don't know any better, so it all starts and ends with Tolkien...

(as for me, to be honest, all the fuss and the films and the tv series just put me off things: if I hadn't read Tolkien a couple of decades ago, and started ASoIaF several years ago, I wouldn't do it now with the big focus :-\)

Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Re: Happy Christmas!
« on: December 24, 2013, 06:21:28 PM »
Arry, that is just... wrong ;D

General Discussion / Re: Member birthday calendar
« on: December 24, 2013, 10:12:58 AM »
Thanks Elfy, it was still on the right day :)

Growing up, my parents made sure that yes, I got presents on both days (otherwise it wouldn't be fair on me vs. my sister, who chose August to be born hehe), but everyone else was very much "here's one present for both days" grrr

Nowadays my parents normally just give me money and I choose my presents - but my sister and a friend do give me separate packs (I got another book under the tree to open tomorrow!) - I do like my birthday better than Christmas anyway, specially living in a different country and all...

Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Re: Happy Christmas!
« on: December 24, 2013, 10:08:14 AM »
Merry Christmas, and hear hear (already started with loads of books, hehe)

General Discussion / Re: Member birthday calendar
« on: December 23, 2013, 05:31:46 PM »
Thanks all! :D
I'm having a great day, with friends and good conversations - and I got 1 book (Mistborn vol. 1), a Waterstones giftcard with money for another 2.5 books, and I got the book I won on the post today, so all good hehe

(Edit - and I noticed this is my post number 100 hehe - I'm a Night Angel now!)

General Discussion / Re: Member birthday calendar
« on: December 23, 2013, 10:13:44 AM »
Well, today's mine ;D

A lovely double-number, soon after the answer to everything, hehe

Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Re: What are you currently reading?
« on: December 20, 2013, 08:36:36 PM »
Later I'm going to start Winter, by William Horwood, the last in his tetralogy *dances*
(the hardcover just arrived at my library, paperback only published late next year, when I'll buy it)

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