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What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

After enjoying the (now long cancelled) show, and the high praise from friends beating down on me to try it... I finally gave this one a read. I'm glad I did and will be getting the others.

 

I find I enjoy first person narratives when it comes to reading, and Butcher does a great job at setting up "atmosphere" for want of a better word. :)

 

I love the series. I find that books 3 and 4 get a little depressing, and then really perk up at book 5, then really take off. In my opinion each book after 4 was better than the last.

 

I just finished reading Evil Genius and Genius Squad Catherine Jinks - while not exactly SF or Fantasy it has elements of both Pulp and Superheroes in it (in a way). Main character is a super-genius with systems, and has a supervillian for a father. Semi adolescent (about on par with the later Harry Potter really). Very good.

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

I love the series. I find that books 3 and 4 get a little depressing' date=' and then really perk up at book 5, then really take off. In my opinion each book after 4 was better than the last.[/quote']

 

Unfortunately, I'm starting to have the opposite reaction. I'm finding the series is starting to run into a number of the problems that can happen with long running series. (Please note, it hasn't gotten as bad as it has in some other series, but I deffinitely see it building.)

 

The biggest problem for me is the "must top every previous threat" effect. Sort of like in Buffy (with the exception of the inept trio) the big bad of each season was more powerful than the one from the season before. There is a feeling of that creeping in, that Mr. Butcher feels he has to keep upping the threat level either by having more powerful individuals, or by just having just plain more bad stuff happening to keep us feeling like Harry is being challenged.

 

The next is more subtle, and much harder to deal with as a writer. It is also thankfully not something that is going to be inherently a problem for everyone. I'm starting to see things getting repeated and/or reoccuring and they are things that just aren't exciting me or they are making things feel predictable.

 

It makes me glad that Mr. Butcher has expanded into other series so different from the Dresden files. I think that the extra time between novels within the same series that encourages, has some significant benefits.

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

 

The biggest problem for me is the "must top every previous threat" effect. Sort of like in Buffy (with the exception of the inept trio) the big bad of each season was more powerful than the one from the season before. There is a feeling of that creeping in, that Mr. Butcher feels he has to keep upping the threat level either by having more powerful individuals, or by just having just plain more bad stuff happening to keep us feeling like Harry is being challenged.

 

This one is a huge feature for me (rather than a bug) - it's, if you will pardon the gaming metaphor, seeing Harry level up. He gets new and better spells, and creates niftier items. The threat is moving from human, to Fae, to dealing with the Fallen and Arch angels. That is something that I love about the series - in fiction we so rarely get a character who really, clearly, gets much more powerful during the course of a series that it is really refreshing to see.

 

I can see a little bit to your other point - and I love the Fury books as well.

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

This one is a huge feature for me (rather than a bug) - it's, if you will pardon the gaming metaphor, seeing Harry level up. He gets new and better spells, and creates niftier items. The threat is moving from human, to Fae, to dealing with the Fallen and Arch angels. That is something that I love about the series - in fiction we so rarely get a character who really, clearly, gets much more powerful during the course of a series that it is really refreshing to see.

 

I can see a little bit to your other point - and I love the Fury books as well.

 

 

These two series have put him on my " Oh, it is by him? BUY IT NOW" list. :D

 

David webber, btw, is no longer an "can I scrape up the money this week" member of the list.

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

Captain's Fury by Jim Butcher

 

Captains Fury is the 4th book in Jim Butcher's Codex Alara, set in a Romanesque fantasy setting. All people have access to magical Furies of air, water, earth, steel, wood or fire, usually only one.

 

This story picks up a few months after the events of book three, and is easily the best book of the series.

 

The world setting is lush with interesting foes, both political and military, without being overly heavy like a R.R. Martin book.

 

There is not much to discuss without ruining the first three books, so I say to you NGD reader, Give it a go! See that Jim Butcher can do fantasy as well as he does Urban Fantasy in the Dresden Files.

 

This is a series that needs to be read from the beginning, but be warned that the first book is a bit slow as it sets the world and finds its feet.

 

The Furies of Calderon

Academ's Fury

Cursor's Fury

Captains Fury

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

Captain's Fury by Jim Butcher

 

Captains Fury is the 4th book in Jim Butcher's Codex Alara, set in a Romanesque fantasy setting. All people have access to magical Furies of air, water, earth, steel, wood or fire, usually only one.

 

This story picks up a few months after the events of book three, and is easily the best book of the series.

 

The world setting is lush with interesting foes, both political and military, without being overly heavy like a R.R. Martin book.

 

There is not much to discuss without ruining the first three books, so I say to you NGD reader, Give it a go! See that Jim Butcher can do fantasy as well as he does Urban Fantasy in the Dresden Files.

 

This is a series that needs to be read from the beginning, but be warned that the first book is a bit slow as it sets the world and finds its feet.

 

The Furies of Calderon

Academ's Fury

Cursor's Fury

Captains Fury

 

 

 

That one I could not scrape up the money for the hardback. So I got it at the library the day after they got it in!

 

Loved it.

 

Like I said...

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

The Bahzell books are for me' date=' but I never got into Honor.[/quote']

 

 

I still like most of his stuff, it is just that not all of it resonates the way it did.

 

I thought WIndriders Oath was a little weak towards the end.

 

Still fun, but...

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

Just finished Rob Roger's Devil's Cape, based on recommendations on this board, especially from Log.

 

Overall, a very entertaining book, and a great entry into the field of literate Superhero fiction. Go read this.

 

I'd love to see the character write ups. :)

 

The book had its down side, but that was mostly a matter of personal taste. There were one or two incidents that made me feel that the Supers (Hero and Villain) were pointless, and the "realism" level was high enough in some places that the low levels in others became grating. Despite that, if you're in the mood for a well done Iron Age (but not Rusty Iron) Superhero story, this is a great book to spend some time with.

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

I'm reading "the lies of Locke Lamore." and enjoying it a lot...

 

Great read. The next book, "Red Seas Under Red Skies" is equally as good. Scott Lynch is quite talented and a worthy inheritor of the Fafhrd and Mouser style of thieves-as-heroes style.

 

Reading "Winterbirth" by Brian Ruckley, myself. So far so good. Similar to Erickson but perhaps a touch more traditional in some ways.

 

Prior to that I read Joe Abercrombie's series, including "The Blade Itself", "Before They Are Hanged" and "Last Argument of Kings". I couldn't put 'em down. Highly recommended for fans of epic fantasy in the better-than-Jordan-as-good-as-Martin-not-quite-as-good-as-G.G.Kay genre.

 

But that's just me :)

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

How Much for Just the Planet?

 

Its a ST: TOS novel by John M. Ford.

 

If Douglas Adams had written Star Trek... Oy!

 

It was thoroughly enjoyable, but you have to like British humour and be in a madcap mood for it to be worth your while.

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

How Much for Just the Planet?

 

Its a ST: TOS novel by John M. Ford.

 

If Douglas Adams had written Star Trek... Oy!

 

It was thoroughly enjoyable, but you have to like British humour and be in a madcap mood for it to be worth your while.

 

Yeah, I read that some time ago, and loved it.

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

How Much for Just the Planet?

Ah, haven't read that one in years. It has survived occasional enforced weeding of my book collection, though, so I really ought to revisit it soon.

 

I've just completed The Blue-Haired Bombshell by John Zakour, one of the increasingly predictable Zach Johnson P.I. series. The premise is fine - last P.I. on Earth, old-fashioned but has a snooty supercomputer wired into his brain - but after five books the continual appearance of powerful female characters (with the emphasis on "powerful" more than "character" as they're pretty much interchangeable) threatening the world with psionics and superpowers, defeated only by Zach, his smugly superior computer HARV and his telepathic secretary Carol... well, half of the pages seem to be devoted to justifying why someone doesn't just kill Zach first, then get on with their plan.

 

Light reading, then, not anywhere near as funny as it ought to be and yet still fairly enjoyable. The jokes seem a little more tired and rather less frequent than in the earlier books; and the titles have never surpassed that of the first in the series, The Plutonium Blonde. Start there if you have any interest, rather than the later books.

 

Before that I read Greg Farshtey's old Bloodshadows novel, Hell's Feast, fantasy noir detective thriller, with vampires. Every bit as cheesy as it sounds, on top of which it's gaming fiction. I enjoyed it immensely :D

 

Hmm, what to read next...?

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

Getting towards the end of "First Truth" by Dawn Cook. Fairly typical of its type of fantasy but not too bad. First book of a series, but being me it will be some time before I get the last book read. I have NO ability to start a series at book one and then read them all straight through to the last book !

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

I just finished The Vast White By Jason Walters, published by Blackwyrm Games.

 

It took two tries to read it. But once I got going I couldn't stop until I had finished it. It is part one of a series and I will be hoping to see more.

 

The book is written in a first person narrative (if I remember my lit courses correctly) of the chronicler of a mercenary company involved in a desert battle. It is a fantasy realm but beyond a few terms here and there it reads very contemporary. The "author" of the records is a loquacious, if hard bitten, merc and he sets a very...let's say, casual tone for his record keeping, often insulting the reader directly (as the only readers would be bureaucrats) and himself occasionally. There are a nice mix of characters and personalities, there's action and there's violence, and humor. The book never loses it's voice and once I grew accustomed to it, I found I liked the chronicler very much.

 

It's not a great tome, clocking in at exactly 100 pages with about 9 pages of glossary; so it's a quick read. I hope to see the next installment soon.

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

My biggest gripe is the novel is way too short. That, and some of the dialogue comes across odd for the setting, and there are some spelling/grammar errors that really should have been caught.

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

Just read "Astounding Hero Tales" (James Lowder ed) and enjoyed it. It had most of the things that I want in a "pulp" story (or stories) and covered a whole lot of the "subtypes" of pulp (sports,horror, crime, treasure hunt,etc). So :thumbup: ! I wonder whether "Hero Games" is contemplating publishing more anthologies ? They wouldn't have to be "pulp" stories, but it seems to me that there might be a market for an anthology of "superhero" stories or similar.

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

My biggest gripe is the novel is way too short. That' date=' and some of the dialogue comes across odd for the setting, and there are some spelling/grammar errors that really should have been caught.[/quote']

Yes, yes, and yes.

But still want to keep reading, so he did the bulk of it right. :D

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

Yes, yes, and yes.

But still want to keep reading, so he did the bulk of it right. :D

 

True, I'll but the next one.

 

Oh, and I was somewhat annoyed and/or disappointed to find that the cover art shows not the main character, but the fan-service female, which doesn't seem to be dressed the way the story indicates she should be dressed (or endowed).

 

I'd also say the book reads like something Drake would write, if he chose to write gritty fantasy with a really weird magic system.

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

It's a collection of short stories rather than a novel, but I've discovered the work of Clark Ashton Smith.

 

Here's a link to his writings.

 

That man is one of the great forgotten writers of early 30's fantasy, much like Henry Kuttner and C.L. Moore.

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Re: What Fantasy/Sci-Fi book have you just finished? Please rate it...

 

Finished Night Watch recently. Good book. Urban fantasy with a Russian twist. I'd seen the movie already; the book really fills in a lot of the holes from the film. Bunneh sez: Check it out.

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