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Sneaky__Sally
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
Un I dont know if i woukd say I loved the malazan ending in that sense. I certainly enjoyed it but its not what i think about as the most memorable part. That may be too harsh criteria but rarely are the endings of series my favorite parts


auyushu
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
quote:

certainly enjoyed it but its not what i think about as the most memorable part. 


Oh, I just meant in terms of it being a very good ending I thought, not that it was the most memorable part (cause it definitely wasn't, that could be the chain of dogs in book 2, book 3, or book 5 depending on what kinda mood I'm in since all were so awesome).

If you were talking about series where the last book is the best in the series, that is definitely much more rare.

The last book of Dyrk Ashton's Paternus was the last time I can think of the last book being awesome and the best book in a series by a decent amount.

I think John Gwynne's Faithful and the Fallen would probably be one where the last book is the best too (and the follow-up trilogy is the same way).

This post was edited on 10/18 at 6:36 pm


Sneaky__Sally
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
quote:

I think John Gwynne's Faithful and the Fallen would probably be one where the last book is the best too (and the follow-up trilogy is the same way).



That one I can agree with for sure.

SPOILERS


I really dont' know exactly how I feel about the Malazan ending, it doesn't stand out but there is just so much happening. Now that I think about it - and I forget which character / storyline it was - but the guy with the "singing" sword or whatever in the rift did just make my jaw drop. The whole idea of it shouldn't work with that much overpower, but somehow it was perfect in so many ways.

I'm working my way through a re-read, i'm putting together a full Malzan hardback collection as I do and listening along with "Ten Very Big Books Podcast" - which Erickson has mentioned in some recent interviews and he does a post book interview with them when they finish each one, so it really is awesome.


auyushu
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
Crippled God Spoilers:






quote:

but the guy with the "singing" sword or whatever in the rift did just make my jaw drop. 


You talking about the dude defending the shore from the light Tiste(Liosan or whatever)? Cause yeah, that was pretty good.

And there were definitely a ton of moving pieces with the last book, but I thought he did a great job bringing it all together into a cohesive whole, and all the battles, Fiddler and the bridge burner parts were great endings. And Ping winding up as Icarium's new companion was fitting I think. I was extremely happy with it at the time it came out, particularly given how awful Dust of Dreams was.


Sneaky__Sally
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
Ya that is what I was talking about - something about that whole sequence stuck with me.



Also I got A Little Hatred on audiobook from libby, have a big roadtrip coming up tuesday or wednesday so hope to knock out a good bit.


auyushu
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
You haven't read the stand alones yet have you?


BloodSweat&Beers
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
quote:

You haven't read the stand alones yet have you?


I would read the standalones. Not only are they great, but they develop the world more.


auyushu
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
quote:

would read the standalones. Not only are they great, but they develop the world more.


That's kinda where I was going with that, Sally is gonna miss a ton of backstory reading A Little Hatred before the Heroes. And Best Served Cold should really be read before the Heroes due to character development reasons. And of course Red Country is the best book he's written.


Sneaky__Sally
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
Oh well ill return that one then, it was the onlyone libby had. Ended up listening to something else on my trip yesterday


Sneaky__Sally
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
I remember reading about a contemporary fantasy author of Tolkien, who doesn't get a lot of credit as a foundation of series but apparently put out a fantastic series at around the same time? Anyone have any idea who I may be talking about. EDITED: Maybe Mervyn Peake?

Also, has anyone read Raymond Feist's Magician books? Thinking about picking those up to help me round out my survey of the sort of foundations of the genre before Modern Fantasy started to form.


ETA: Also just got a recommendation for Prince of Nothing series by R. Scott Bakker from someone who said it is reminiscent of Malazan in terms of scope and history. Anyone read that series?
This post was edited on 10/24 at 10:10 am


auyushu
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
Feist's books were solid old school fantasy back in the day, though they get pretty repetitive at a certain point. The first couple main storylines (6-7 books) are very solid though. And the companion trilogy he wrote with Wurts that occurs in between the first part of the series and the next is very good too.

R Scott Bakker is someone I'm very mixed on. His first trilogy was very solid, with a unique protagonist. The next series gets weird and is kinda a slog, I stopped reading it half way through.

From what I understand that 4 book series still doesn't finish the main storyline (and ends on a cliffhanger empire strikes back negative style ending), and given how poorly those books sold who knows if he'll even ever be able to finish the series. He has an issue I like to call author wank on page, where he loves to use high level vocabulary and have long wordy prose for no particular reason, even when it really adds nothing to book. And that has always killed his books popularity.
This post was edited on 10/24 at 12:00 pm


Sneaky__Sally
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
quote:

Feist's books were solid old school fantasy back in the day, though they get pretty repetitive at a certain point. The first couple main storylines (6-7 books) are very solid though. And the companion trilogy he wrote with Wurts that occurs in between the first part of the series and the next is very good too.

R Scott Bakker is someone I'm very mixed on. His first trilogy was very solid, with a unique protagonist. The next series gets weird and is kinda a slog, I stopped reading it half way through.

From what I understand that 4 book series still doesn't finish the main storyline (and ends on a cliffhanger empire strikes back negative style ending), and given how poorly those books sold who knows if he'll even ever be able to finish the series. He has an issue I like to call author wank on page, where he loves to use high level vocabulary and have long wordy prose for no particular reason, even when it really adds nothing to book. And that has always killed his books popularity.


Ya i feel that, i'll probably just check out their early works - now that I've been finding out so much good stuff, i'm much more lenient on just reading a few of a certain author. The recommendation I got for Bakker was for his main trilogy.

Would you rank Feist early stuff above Robin Hobb? Is it similar / comparable?

I was also thinking about the vocabulary thing earlier today reading Pratchett. He uses a surprising number of words I don't know for how easy his books are to read. There is really something to speaking / writing in a way everybody can follow while still sounding smart. Guys like Erikson and Malazan are hard to follow a lot, but they don't (in my opinion) sort of circle around a topic that is intended to make them sound smart.

When an author delivers a great piece of foreshadowing or pulls together some great plot points in an incredible way, readers can tell. I feel like one of the things that sort of tears me out of a story is when something cool happens, and then the author sort of circles back to make sure the reader knows how cool / trippy / awesome or whatever it was.

Erikson sort of tows the line in Toll The Hounds - going back and reading some of his commentary I can give him that one because (1) he was really trying to get into some sort of "meta" fiction and (2) the rest of the series have helped build up and let him earn those sort of scenes.

I think you can say the same thing to some degree about King and The Dark Tower series. There was some stuff that didn't work but he has also earned some of the scenes that did work by laying the foundation in the series and also over the course of his career in terms of his style.


auyushu
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
quote:

Would you rank Feist early stuff above Robin Hobb? Is it similar / comparable?


In overall quality probably so, but completely different styles of books. I'd compare him more to a John Gwynne type author probably in terms of style and pace. He's more of the fun high adventure fantasy style. If you read the books in the order he wrote them up through the serpentwar saga they are all pretty solid. Good thing with him is they are all pretty self-contained trilogies or 4 book sets.

I always knew I had a good AP English teacher back in high school, but as I've gotten older I've realized how good she was since I've never really had issues with vocabulary while reading. Pratchett uses a lot of British slang though, which can take a bit to figure out.

And I agree, there is a big difference between having excellent high level prose that is very readable, and just pontificating wordy nonsense to show off your intellect. The only time I've really felt Erikson did the latter was in the second book of his attempted Tiste Andii trilogy, which such a terrible book he wasn't even able to finish the trilogy.

R Scott Bakker is a philosophy professor, and he has excellent prose and ideas for the most part. He just can't help himself from going off on tangents and showing off how intelligent he is, to the detriment of the story.

His first trilogy is very much worth reading though, just be aware that it's very grimdark, along the lines of the gap series. The primary protagonist of the first trilogy Kellhus is one of the more unique characters in fantasy though.

This post was edited on 10/25 at 1:40 pm


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auyushu
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
quote:

think you can say the same thing to some degree about King and The Dark Tower series. There was some stuff that didn't work but he 


Ugh, never been so disappointed with a series ending. Dark Tower is a perfect example of why I won't give authors too much crap for taking too long with series (obviously guys like Rothfuss and Martin are exceptions here and beyond ridiculous). Him freaking out and writing the last three books back to back after his near death experience was a terrible idea. Books 2,3, and 4 in that series are among my favorites.

While the 5th book was decent, him writing himself into the book with the priest's alcoholic struggles was unnecessary and brought the book to a crawl. And the last two books were straight garbage because of him rushing them. The Wind through the Keyhole prequel showed he could still write great stories in that setting, which makes it all the more disappointing.
This post was edited on 10/25 at 1:36 pm


Sneaky__Sally
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
quote:

And the last two books were straight garbage because of him rushing them. The Wind through the Keyhole prequel showed he could still write great stories in that setting, which makes it all the more disappointing.




I agree, but there were moments where I felt like he did some pretty cool stuff and the early part of the series was incredible - if he had closed it off with some decent entries it would be hands down up there in my best of all time rankings.

Also...

quote:


While the 5th book was decent, him writing himself into the book with the priest's alcoholic struggles was unnecessary and brought the book to a crawl.


This is something that just completely pulls everyone out of the story, instead of being in the story and sort of living it with the characters, this makes you think about the fact that you are reading a book and just kills all of the momentum and engrossment going.
This post was edited on 10/25 at 2:10 pm


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CHSTigersFan
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
The Lost Swords Trilogy by Fred Saberhagen
The Belgariad by David Eddings

Both from the 80s so may be hard to find but both great reads.


Sneaky__Sally
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
Getting another strong recommendation for Adrian Tchaikovsky - Children of Time, anybody familiar?


auyushu
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
quote:

Getting another strong recommendation for Adrian Tchaikovsky - Children of Time, anybody familiar?


I read 6-7 books of his Shadow of the Apt series and then got kinda bored and stopped reading it, but I'll probably finish it someday. I've never read those books though, they seem to have better reviews than the series I was reading.

He's a solid writer, but not someone I'd go out of my way to recommend based on what I read.
This post was edited on 10/31 at 6:56 am


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ShamelessPel
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
quote:

Oh, I just meant in terms of it being a very good ending I thought, not that it was the most memorable part (cause it definitely wasn't, that could be the chain of dogs in book 2, book 3, or book 5 depending on what kinda mood I'm in since all were so awesome).



I know what you mean. Kind of “no part of it let me down. But nothing made me go WOAH.”

Malazan is my favorite fantasy series. I saw an interview recently where he said Frank Herbert was an inspiration, and I pretty much instantly understand why. There’s a depth to the characters and an ambition to his ideas. 2 and 3 are easily my favorites of the series too btw.


But...


SPOILERS




I think the ending was always going to be hampered by dramatic and huge moments early in the series being undone later in certain aspects. The stakes had been toned down a little. And he also had to tie in a convergence of sooo many storylines. “Good enough” was probably an accomplishment on his part.


Sneaky__Sally
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re: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Recommendation & Discussion Thread
Those two were initially my favorite, but then going back on a reread, I loved Midnight Tides and really that whole middle trilogy just worked for me.

For me, Malazan is definitely the massive worldbuilding series with the highest percentage of books that just really worked well.


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