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What are you reading in 2022?

dragoner

Dying in Chargen
Rome was, for the most part, successful. As much as we try to reconstruct what Carthage was, it will always be defined by trying to understand it through what the destroyers of Carthage told us.
I think yes, the ultimate victory was in their literature, and how we get to know the Romans as people, not just shadowy figures out of history. Its sort of the same historical desire for the Carthaginians, who were they as people? It does sound like a good book, and I will pick it up.
 

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Sabathius42

Bree-Yark
Still going thru the omnibus collection of Amber books. Just passed a page with no paragraph breaks. Yuck. I'm beginning to wonder if this is just a long, padded, story. I think I'd feel very different if I read the books as separate books, over long stretches of reading other things?
The fist 5 books is one story. The second five is a different but related story.
 

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
The fist 5 books is one story. The second five is a different but related story.

I'd put it more like, "The first five books is one story- one of the most famous and influential stories in fantasy literature. The second five is a related story, which is fine."

That's in contrast to the Chronicles of Covenant/Land Series, which I'd put like this-

The first trilogy is one of the best and most influential trilogies in fantasy, but because of a certain choice at the beginning may not be suitable for all modern readers.
The second trilogy is related, but while controversial at the time, is arguably even better than the first.
The third quadrology wraps everything up, and exists.
 

Sabathius42

Bree-Yark
I'm finishing up The Last Gentleman of War. It's the story of the SMS Emden, a German light cruiser that became a commerce raider in the Pacific and Indian oceans in WW1.

I read a lot of historical books, and one almost universal trait of books focused on German soldiers/sailors/tankers seems to be a strangely misguided thought that everybody they victimize loves them and thinks they are great (except Russians). This book was no exception.
 

Sabathius42

Bree-Yark
I'd put it more like, "The first five books is one story- one of the most famous and influential stories in fantasy literature. The second five is a related story, which is fine."

That's in contrast to the Chronicles of Covenant/Land Series, which I'd put like this-

The first trilogy is one of the best and most influential trilogies in fantasy, but because of a certain choice at the beginning may not be suitable for all modern readers.
The second trilogy is related, but while controversial at the time, is arguably even better than the first.
The third quadrology wraps everything up, and exists.
I can't argue the second story is a couple letter grades below the first. Either way after book 5/10 one has a natural stopping spot if it's getting to be a drag.
 

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
I can't argue the second story is a couple letter grades below the first. Either way after book 5/10 one has a natural stopping spot if it's getting to be a drag.

I brought up the Covenant/Land comparison for a reason. It's the eternal problem of having a super-successful series/character/world.

People always want more of it.

For example, a someone who loved the Chronicles of Amber, I was thrilled to see that Zelazny returned to them with the second Chronicles (the Merlin Chronicles). And they were ... fine. But they weren't essential. And they weren't as good as the Corwin Chronicles.

It's that eternal battle- I'm glad that I got to return to a world I loved to read about, I'm glad that Zelazny got to get more checks, but it was also so inessential compared to what had come before.

It's the same with the Covenant series- although I think that you could almost say that the first two trilogies were the original, seminal work, and the recent quadrology was the belated afterthought. Sure, it was fine, and it was good to return to the place and the characters ... but it was just so monumentally inessential and lesser than what had come before.

I'm hard pressed to think of a good example of a writer returning to something after a period of time, and having it matter. I know it exists, but usually it's ... you know, fine.
 

Sabathius42

Bree-Yark
I brought up the Covenant/Land comparison for a reason. It's the eternal problem of having a super-successful series/character/world.

People always want more of it.

For example, a someone who loved the Chronicles of Amber, I was thrilled to see that Zelazny returned to them with the second Chronicles (the Merlin Chronicles). And they were ... fine. But they weren't essential. And they weren't as good as the Corwin Chronicles.

It's that eternal battle- I'm glad that I got to return to a world I loved to read about, I'm glad that Zelazny got to get more checks, but it was also so inessential compared to what had come before.

It's the same with the Covenant series- although I think that you could almost say that the first two trilogies were the original, seminal work, and the recent quadrology was the belated afterthought. Sure, it was fine, and it was good to return to the place and the characters ... but it was just so monumentally inessential and lesser than what had come before.

I'm hard pressed to think of a good example of a writer returning to something after a period of time, and having it matter. I know it exists, but usually it's ... you know, fine.
I'm just trying to help a guy/gal out by telling them they need to get through half the book and then they can stop. Not critiquing the quality....since I don't know their tastes.

Blade Runner and Mad Max are two rare examples of good quality product after a long pause. I don't read fiction that much anymore so can't offer a literary suggestion.
 

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
I'm just trying to help a guy/gal out by telling them they need to get through half the book and then they can stop. Not critiquing the quality....since I don't know their tastes.

Blade Runner and Mad Max are two rare examples of good quality product after a long pause. I don't read fiction that much anymore so can't offer a literary suggestion.

That's an interesting distinction.

I think the difference with film is (or can be) this-

When a film property is revived (rebooted) after a period of time, you can get something which is as good, or superior. You can have a completely new take (Mad Max) or a visually compelling new chapter (Blade Runner) or even just a story that can now be told in a different fashion due to technology (Dune). More importantly, you almost always have completely different directors or cinematographers or approaches to the work ... Max Max might be a singular exception to that.

With literature, you often have a requirement that the original author complete the work- in the few cases I can think of where a fill-in writer came in later due to the death of the original writer, I can't think of a single example of the new writer being considered the equal, or better, than the original (think Herbert, Jordan for example). And a lot of times, writers just don't want to return ... they said what they wanted to say, and when they do return, it is often from either a feeling of obligation (the fans keep demanding it), money (the publisher keeps demanding it) or both. Regardless, the return is rarely compelling, but occasionally succeeds at being comfortable.
 

KahlessNestor

Adventurer
Still reading Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr. by Ron Chernow.

Still reading The Battle for Spain by Antony Beevor.

Still reading Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky.

Still reading An Artificial Night by Seanan McGuire.

Still listening to Mistborn: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson.

Still reading Critical Role: Tal’dorei Campaign Setting by Matthew Mercer.

Still reading The Wars of the Roses: The Fall of the Plantagenets and the Rise of the Tudors by Dan Jones.

Still reading The Deed of Paksenarrion by Elizabeth Moon.

Still reading Black Widow: Red Vengeance by Margaret Stohl.

Still reading Royal Assassin by Robin Hobb.

Still reading Matchlock and the Embassy: A Thirty Years’ War Story by Zachary Twamley.

Still reading The Black Ice by Michael Connelly.

Still reading Rise of the King by R. A. Salvatore.

Still reading The Sorcerer of the North by John Flanagan.

Still reading Ghost Story by Jim Butcher.

Finished reading ReDawn by Brandon Sanderson and Janci Patterson.

Still reading Critical Role: Vox Machina – Kith and Kin by Marieke Nijkamp.

Still reading Half-Off Ragnarok by Seanan McGuire.

Still reading The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan.

Started reading Cytonic by Brandon Sanderson.

Started reading Defending Elysium by Brandon Sanderson.
 

GreyLord

Legend
Deryni Books.

Just on the first trilogy, but man...some of the actions taken by characters (especially the evil ones) are terrible and make no sense. Theoretically, they should just fail and that is that, but in the book they succeed.

The church is particularly dumb thus far in the first two books. Politically, the actions make no sense as they risk losing an entire nation and province due to their own stupid actions. It's like the church purposefully wanting to lose Germany or Spain.

Then again, they DID lose England eventually in history, but it took a LOT MORE than simply just disliking a race that the Nobility was actually part of.

What's even MORE stupid is that they are on the brink of a Holy War in the 2nd book, and instead of bolstering up the border nation's military and boostering up to defend the faith, instead they seem intent on doing everything they can to lose that nation to the enemy and threaten their holy church itself!

The first book was okay, and I enjoyed it despite the ridiculous maneuvering, but the second book has increased what bothered me in the first book by a LOT and decreased the sensibilities a LOT.

If I were the Church leadership I'd lay the smackdown on some of the Bishops by declaring them traitors to the faith by trying to ally with the infidels and betray a nation of the Church to the clutches of the enemies of the faith...because that's exactly what all this ridiculous plotting is seeming to do!

Makes me grouse a bit about the plot, at least thus far. Perhaps the third book strikes me better?
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
It's the same with the Covenant series- although I think that you could almost say that the first two trilogies were the original, seminal work, and the recent quadrology was the belated afterthought. Sure, it was fine, and it was good to return to the place and the characters ... but it was just so monumentally inessential and lesser than what had come before.
I just found out a year or two ago that there was a third Covenant series. If I recall, the second series came to a good closure that would need to be undone in order to write more. Is it worth it to rip up that closure and read the last series? From your comments, you don't seem particularly happy with them, but do the wrap up the whole series in a overwhelmingly well done way worth discarding the closure at the end of the second trilogy?
 

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
I just found out a year or two ago that there was a third Covenant series. If I recall, the second series came to a good closure that would need to be undone in order to write more. Is it worth it to rip up that closure and read the last series? From your comments, you don't seem particularly happy with them, but do the wrap up the whole series in a overwhelmingly well done way worth discarding the closure at the end of the second trilogy?

Oh. Hmmm. Let's see- there are very few things that I actively regret continuing ... one of the few that springs to mind is Dexter (after the Trinity killer season ... it just kept getting worse and worse until the final season, and especially the final episode, just seemed like it was actively trolling the few fans that had remained).

I mean, it's Donaldson. Donaldson is a great writer. The last Covenant series is not bad. I love the setting and the characters, and it was good to re-visit them. I enjoyed reading it. But it was inessential. There's an ending, which wraps things up (again, I guess) which works. Honestly, the best comparator is probably the second Chronicles of Amber (the Merlin ones), where it's just ... fine.

If you love the series, you should read it. It's not like he is writing more books. Parts of it are quite good. Just ... in my opinion ... it's more "Ah, it's nice to come back," than "OMG THESE BOOKS ARE SO AMAZING" like the first two series.

But to answer your question- yeah, he sticks the landing. It's an ending that works and I think you'll be satisfied. It's not Covenant deciding to be a lumberjack.
 

I've been holding off on the third Covenant series, for fear of being disappointed. One of these days I'll get to it...

I finished reading French's The True Bastards. I've got some mixed feelings on it - on the one hand, it's got compelling characters and a story that, while it could've probably been trimmed down a little, engages the reader. But it's also got some orcish tropes that considering the current dialogue, are particularly rough to read.

Now I'm re-reading Poul Anderson's The Broken Sword.
 

The Quiet Zone: Unraveling the Mystery of a Town Suspended in Silence by Stephen Kurczy
I returned this book and got the following which had been on my to read list for a while

To Rescue the Republic: Ulysses S. Grant, the Fragile Union, and the Crisis of 1876 by Bret Baier and Powers and Thrones: A New History of the Middle Ages by Dan Jones.
 

KahlessNestor

Adventurer
I returned this book and got the following which had been on my to read list for a while

To Rescue the Republic: Ulysses S. Grant, the Fragile Union, and the Crisis of 1876 by Bret Baier and Powers and Thrones: A New History of the Middle Ages by Dan Jones.
The Dan Jones book is on my list, definitely. Currently reading his War of the Roses and have his Plantagenets and Templars books, but not read them yet.

I haven't read that Grant book, but I read the biography of Grant from a few years ago by Ron Chernow (author of Hamilton, the biography the musical is based on). He's an amazing man, and that election of 1876 is a dicey one! It's one of the elections examined by Tara Ross in her book on the Electoral College. I'll have to take a look at it if it's any good.
 

AcererakTriple6

Autistic DM (he/him)
I've taken a small break from Brandon Sanderson, and am currently reading two books:

First, Dune, the original, by Frank Herbert. This is my first time reading it, but I have seen the new movie based off of it.

Second, the fifth (and final) Dragonwatch book by Brandon Mull, which is the sequel series to Fablehaven. The books are intended for a younger audience (middle school to junior high range), but they're a great fantasy series and the last book to the series was released pretty late last year. I started reading the series when I was like 12 (I'm 20 now), and it's finally finished. The world of Fablehaven has some of the most unique and interesting takes on typical fantasy creatures that I've ever read.
 

GreyLord

Legend
I just found out a year or two ago that there was a third Covenant series. If I recall, the second series came to a good closure that would need to be undone in order to write more. Is it worth it to rip up that closure and read the last series? From your comments, you don't seem particularly happy with them, but do the wrap up the whole series in a overwhelmingly well done way worth discarding the closure at the end of the second trilogy?

It's okay. It is not horrible.

The Best book in the entire third quadralogy (it is 4 books, not 3) is the first one.

The Second one is the worst book, and one that you just want to get mad at some characters for stupid choices (I hate it when characters in books make blatant and obviously stupid choices).

The third book is okay.

The fourth book is okay, but I dislike the ending. I found it a cheap way out. It is a happy ending, but cheap. If I told you why it would be a massive spoiler, but I thought it was CHEAP. The author wrote themselves into a corner and basically couldn't find a good way to get out of it so made the ending they did, at least that's what it seemed to me.

The High mark is the Second Chronicles. It's all downhill from there.

That doesn't mean the third set is bad, just gradually declining in how good it is from the peak of the 2nd Chronicles. It is still enjoyable to read though (It's still Donaldson writing).

There are some things that are good and worth reading in it, and some things which if you analyze it more than just a fun read really will strike you in many ways (such as a direct analogy in some ways at the end to the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost...though male/female may be somewhat interchangeable in that reading).
 

The Dan Jones book is on my list, definitely. Currently reading his War of the Roses and have his Plantagenets and Templars books, but not read them yet.

I haven't read that Grant book, but I read the biography of Grant from a few years ago by Ron Chernow (author of Hamilton, the biography the musical is based on). He's an amazing man, and that election of 1876 is a dicey one! It's one of the elections examined by Tara Ross in her book on the Electoral College. I'll have to take a look at it if it's any good.
Bret Baier does a rehash of Grant's bio while building up to the actual events, He's laying the foundation and giving you insight into how Grant's mind thinks and works. I'm currently in the chapter dealing with his time in the |Civil War. So far it's good.
Here's a screenshot of a section starting at "As news came"..does it remind you of anything?
271764842_10159738214579764_2105020562413937595_n.jpg
 


Smackpixi

Explorer
I’m also reading some old Forgotten Realms books, Black Wizards and hopefully Darkwell, the second two books in the Moonshae trilogy started by Darkwalker On Moonshae…cause somewhere around April I’ll be running a Moonshade campaign and getting flavor.
 

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