Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 48
  1. #1
    Administrator Administrator Hobbit's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Location
    Hobbit Towers, England
    Posts
    11,791
    Blog Entries
    126

    Fantasy/ Horror Reading in July 2014

    Here's where you tell us what Fantasy and Horror you've been reading this month. Whether good or bad, we want to hear what you think.

    Mark/Hobbit
    Mark

  2. #2
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Afghanistan
    Posts
    138
    Well.... I was remiss in not posting this a couple of days ago in June (don't worry.... I'l get to July) but I finished The Crown Tower a couple of days ago...... and now in July..... I am a little over halfway through The Rose and the Thorn. I am enjoying the prequels to Riyria Revelations. For me they are quite a bit different that the prequels I have previously read as most of those predated the main story by..... LOTS of time. The last prequel I read was Forge of Darkness (Malazan prequel) and that is only set tens of thousands of years prior to the main story...LOL. So these books are a bit of a change for me. Really enjoying them though and please keep up the great work Mr sullivan.

    I just downloaded The Kinshield Saga:The complete Series by K.C. May. Amazon had a great deal on it.... the whole thing for 10 bucks. I had done a bit of searching here and found a couple of threads where Indie authors were discussed..... and K.C. May was on Michael Sullivan's list...so.... had to get it. I'll start that after I finish The Rose and the Thorn.... and then Hollow World.

    I am curious if any of you other readers have read any of the Kinshield Saga and if so, your thoughts.

    Cheers All!

    Kempster

  3. #3
    I'm rereading the Farseer trilogy, by Robin Hobb, starting with Assassin's Apprentice. Even though my screen name is taken from it, I have only read that trilogy by Hobb, and it was a long time ago. After rereading Farseer I intend to correct that deficiency by reading some of her other trilogies.

    I'm enjoying the reread. I really like the way Hobb writes. She makes the characters seem very human and real, and the worldbuilding is quite good too.

  4. #4
    http://tinyurl.com/363ogv DurzoBlint's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Tacoma, WA/ Seoul, South Korea
    Posts
    1,595
    Blog Entries
    1
    Well, I finished the White List by Nina D'Aleo and enjoyed it. The ending was a little too predictable for my taste but it is the first in a series. It started out with a similar feel to The Rook by O'Malley and by the end it was more X-Men. Curious to see where it goes next.

    I will start Prince of Fools by some fella named Mark Lawrence tomorrow.

  5. #5
    Read interesting books
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Ada, MI, USA
    Posts
    2,790
    a few thoughts on 4 major fantasy releases:

    - finished The Shadow throne by D. Wexler (2nd after Thousand Names); great execution and a book that is quite different from the first, preserving its best qualities and avoiding the middle syndrome as it presents another complete tale within the larger picture; a more complete review at Goodreads which I will put on Fantasy Book Critic at some point; top 5 of the year for me

    1/3 in The Seal of the Worm by A. Tchaikovsky (10 and last of the Apt series); so far still riveting, still great and I hope it will keep up till the ending

    - tried again The Tower Lord by A. Ryan and still not in the mood for it

    - started The Dark Defiles by R. Morgan and this one I may finish as next fantasy (unless earcs of the Abraham or weeks August novels show up); love the dialogue (kick bottom Morgan at his best) so far but the action is very standard like and I am kind of tired of that; however the dialogue and the (mis) doings of th 3 main characters are worth it so far

  6. #6
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Los Angeles-ish, CA
    Posts
    828
    It's been a very long time (sorry). So here's most of the Fantasy I've been reading in June:

    Sworn in Steel (Tales of the Kin #2) by Douglas Hulick. I didn't quite like this so much as Book 1, but still a really enjoyable read, as the former mid-level con man central character tries to stay alive through a whole lot to deal with. As with the first, should appeal to many fans of books like Locke Lamorra.

    Dirty Magic (The Prospero's War #1) by Jaye Wells. Alchemy UF style and it was alright, not too much romance for those wary of that. Imo the author actually did too much research to make it realistic, and so the book lost some of the urgency and was a little too matter-of-fact. A bit too Law & Order: Alchemy. Of course imho almost every UF needs 2-4 books to get good, so it was pretty decent for a Book 1.

    Moon Called (Mercy Thompson #1) by Patrica Briggs. UF with a bit more romance, though still not too much. The potential was obvious, but the author definitely kept it out of the paranormal romance category. Seems like a solid set-up with some interesting potential. Fast-moving, well-paced, again very good for an UF Book 1.

    Autumn Bones (Agent of Hel #2) by Jacqueline Carey. Quite a lot of this was focused on characterization, and had a 'Hart of Dixie" feel. There was some action, mystery, supernatural and (yes) romance. But not too much of any of that, it really felt that the reader is focused on the lead, and the quirky small town. Pretty tame, except for the very large orgy that began the book.

    Touch (Queen of the Dead #2) by Michelle Sagara. YA UF, and this was a decent enough continuation of the first book. I love the writer, and admire some of what she does here, but this is definitely my least favorite of her various works. Everything moved along well, there was a fairly good inclusion of everyone in the decent sized cast, and things were left on a great cliffhanger.

    Crimson Campaign (The Powder Mage #2) by Brian McClellan. Definitely enjoyable. I felt that this was a decent improvement over the last, which I liked too, with better writing and characterization. Very much looking forward to the next book, coming in February.

    Severed Streets by Paul Cornell. Not as creepy as the first, but still a very unique and original UF series, with an extremely unusual twist. Once again, almost no romance here, but two of the four main characters are black, and one of them is gay, so for those seeking out books with those characteristics, this series is inclusive. Also features a noted real world, living, fantasy author as a reasonably significant character in the novel.

    Enchantment Emporium (Gale Women #1) by Tanya Huff. This UF leads off with some combination of incest, polygamy, and uh other stuff, and it takes pretty much the whole book to even try to figure it out. Of course some people don't care about that sort of a thing. Either way, it's an unusual take on UF, with familial relationships that can be tough to work out. Imo it was decent enough if you can get past that, and certainly original.

    Death Sworn by Leah Cypress. YA fantasy that follows a sorceress who's losing her powers who has to train a guild of assassins in magic after two of her predecessors have been recently murdered. I found it enjoyable enough, nothing earth-shattering, but original and unpredictable.

    The Girl with All the Gifts by M.R. Carey. I loved the short story that this was based on, "Iphigenia in Aulis", and liked this one too, though a tad less. Really enjoyed the main character of Melanie.

    Under Heaven (in progress) by Guy Gavriel Kay. Reminds me in some ways of Sailing to Sarantium by the same author, but I'm continuing through that, and it's by no means bad.

  7. #7
    Administrator Administrator Hobbit's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Location
    Hobbit Towers, England
    Posts
    11,791
    Blog Entries
    126
    Wow, you have been busy, Amethyst!

    Queen of the Tearling review now up: http://www.sffworld.com/2014/07/quee...rika-johansen/ which wasn't perfect but I quite liked. Have spent the week catching up with Django Wexler: really enjoying The Thousand Names.

    suciul: TPB copy (UK version) of Abraham's The Widow's House arrived here last Thursday, so it should be 'out there' soon. Hoping to start it myself very soon, due out here in August, I think.
    Mark

  8. #8
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Los Angeles-ish, CA
    Posts
    828
    Thanks, yeah Hobbit. I finally had a productive month (or not depending on whether one defines reading as productive).

    Meanwhile, very glad to see you catching up on Django Wexler. The Thousand Names was rather good imho, and moreso for being a debut. I was sorry that we couldn't vote him into the top novels in 2013 poll, but maybe he'll have better luck this year?

  9. #9
    Administrator Administrator Hobbit's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Location
    Hobbit Towers, England
    Posts
    11,791
    Blog Entries
    126
    Don't think Thousand Names would be eligible as a 2013 release: but the second novel, The Shadow Realms, which Rob has just reviewed, should be eligible. And Rob says it's better than the first, so it is possible...
    Mark

  10. #10
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Los Angeles-ish, CA
    Posts
    828
    Maybe I'm missing something, but I think that The Thousand Names did come out last year in both the US & UK. Several of us voted for it in last year's poll and no one mentioned any problem at the time?

  11. #11
    Administrator Administrator Hobbit's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Location
    Hobbit Towers, England
    Posts
    11,791
    Blog Entries
    126
    Yeah, I've not been very clear there. The Thousand Names was published in the UK & the US in 2013 and therefore was eligible in 2013, and was voted for accordingly. However as it was eligible 2013, it won't be eligible for 2014. However, the second book, The Shadow Throne, has been published in 2014 and therefore will be eligible for voting next time around. And if it is better, then chances are it may do better.


    Currently about 75% through Thousand Names, myself.

    M.
    Mark

  12. #12
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Los Angeles-ish, CA
    Posts
    828
    That makes complete sense. I was trying to suggest Shadow Throne for 2014, not The Thousand Names again. Sorry if that was unclear on my end.

    The only bit I'd quibble with is that I think Django Wexler was somewhat under the radar last year, so I like to believe that at least part of why he didn't do better in the voting is that less people had read the book. We can never know of course, but I like to optimistically believe that it could have made a difference. But now that he had that really impressive interview here at sffworld (AO said innocently), and Rob B posted those two great reviews, and you're reading at least the first novel, then I'm hopeful that the number of people exposed to his work will be greater, and perhaps that may help increase votes too. It may not happen, but we'll see.


    Meanwhile, I put aside Under Heaven because I kept mentally comparing it to Sailing to Sarantium. I'll continue with it, but it'll be more of a marathon than a sprint.

    Instead I read Song of the Beast by Carol Berg. This was a self-contained novel, which I've not actually read very many of, and I rather liked it. It starts with mysteries and a certain simplicity, but is not lacking in intelligence and to a certain extent I was put in mind of the early Riyria novels. But it soon moved in a different direction, and I actually was reminded of Kay at least somewhat. Ironic that I had just set one aside, and maybe that played a part in my comparison, but I really think I would have made a connection even if that had not been the case. The story was nicely paced, and although the ending was in some ways predictable, in others it very much wasn't (imo at least). I thought that the story did a good job of slowly building up to the finish, and packed a nice emotional punch for me at the end.

  13. #13
    I read Tower Lord by A. Ryan. It's a 3/5 star book. Not near as good as book 1 but still enjoyable. It switches to multiple POV which is a turn off for me.

    I just finished Monster Hunter: Nemesis. It's enjoyable but I finished realizing that its overpriced. I've found dozens of works in Urban Fantasy that are by self publishers that have a better story for half the money and this has spoiled me to these overpriced sequels by the traditional authors.

  14. #14
    Registered User Azazel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Puerto Rico
    Posts
    5
    Read The Shadow Throne by Django Wexler and unlike many ive seen i didnt find it better than the first book, thats mainly because i enjoyed the setting more in the first book. That said The Shadow Throne was really really good, can not wait for the next book.

  15. #15
    Read interesting books
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Ada, MI, USA
    Posts
    2,790
    Finished The Seal of the Worm by A. Tchaikovsky: after 10 epic volumes, the saga started 6 years ago in Empire in Black and Gold ends extremely satisfying with a book that grabs one from the first page and never lets go until the final epilogue set a few years later which itself has a superb conclusion; there is so much to cover and so many subplots to follow that the novel doesn't feel long, maybe it actually could have had a couple hundred more pages for more detail here and there, but overall I think the balance between action and world building holds well and there is enough of the later even though not everything is spelled out

    we meet again pretty much all the surviving important characters including quite a few that have not appeared in several books, though obviously the most pages are dedicated to the two subplots that dominated books 8 and 9 - the Collegium and the fates of those on both (or maybe many) sides involved there and life in the Worm domain where Che and her companions where thrown at the end of the last volume and where they have a stark choice - try and engineer a revolt and overthrow the Worm or die together with their world; things happen, twists, turns and non-stop action while as mentioned the ending is excellent - among the best wrap up of a long series I've ever read and one that can stand as an example for how to do it - enough conclusion, enough openness for more later (as far as I know more kinden books are planned though most likely they will take place in a different time with different characters), tragedy and triumph, things to do later etc; many important characters die (another book that kills them in droves like Salute the Dark) but many survive and even thrive including some that became big time favorites of mine as the series went on

    Overall just great stuff and another top 5 of mine for the year

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •