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What are you reading this year 2020?

Pawndream

Explorer
I've been reading N.K. Jemisin's Broken Earth series.

Completed the first two books and will pick up the third from the library this week. They have been fascinating reads, but also frustrating at times. There have been a few points where I have been tempted to give up on it, but then I buckle down and refocus. Overall, it's been an enjoyable, if not challenging read.

After I read this next book and complete out this series, I am going to read a popcorn book series for a change of pace, probably Cleric Quintet (which I've never read).
 

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Nellisir

Adventurer
I've been reading N.K. Jemisin's Broken Earth series.

Completed the first two books and will pick up the third from the library this week. They have been fascinating reads, but also frustrating at times. There have been a few points where I have been tempted to give up on it, but then I buckle down and refocus. Overall, it's been an enjoyable, if not challenging read.

After I read this next book and complete out this series, I am going to read a popcorn book series for a change of pace, probably Cleric Quintet (which I've never read).
I gotta say, NK Jemisin has become one of my favorite authors. Broken Earth didn't quite do it for me, but the Hundred Thousand Kingdoms certainly does. And I'm going to reread Broken Earth because I read it as it was released, which always messes with me a bit because of the year-long wait between books...

I finished Sister Alice, by Robert Reed. Overall, I gotta say 4/10. It's technically fine. Just pointless and...I mean, I finished it a day and a half ago, and I can't remember the ending. Draw your conclusions accordingly. Lots of hard sf buzzwords and concepts that don't go anywhere or do anything except serve as an excuse to handwave people into gods (not really kidding there.) This is basically 2/0 for Mr Reed. I've liked his short story work in collections, but it's not cutting it in novels.

Have started Century Rain, by Alastair Reynolds. I like it better already.
Also bathroom-reading my way through The Mythic Odysseys of Theros. I'm not sure I'm a huge fan of WotC's "Here's a new setting and a bunch of character options to explore a new way of motivating/aligning your character and possibly the campaign" model (looking at you deities of Theros/guilds of Ravnica/dragonmarks of Eberron). I like the theory, but it's starting get old. Theros, at least, doesn't feel like it necessarily gets enough support in the book to run a campaign without a lot of extra work.
 

Pawndream

Explorer
I gotta say, NK Jemisin has become one of my favorite authors. Broken Earth didn't quite do it for me, but the Hundred Thousand Kingdoms certainly does. And I'm going to reread Broken Earth because I read it as it was released, which always messes with me a bit because of the year-long wait between books...
Yeah. As I mentioned, Jemisin is definitely talented, but the three narrators the story is told from is sometimes jarring and I have a hard time understanding some of the "magic-babble". But still, going to finish out the series and will look for the Hundred Thousand Kingdoms as a future read...after I read something light and breezy :)
 

Hundred Thousand Kingdoms is so darn good!

So, here's a question for my fellow book-minded people. I'm trying to remember the title and author of a book I had a long time ago. The cover was similar in style to Boris Vallejo, if not by him, and featured a man (wearing army fatigues maybe) with a grenade launcher facing off against a demon. The book itself was a portal fantasy and the main character was some sort of current or former military. It would've been published in the 80s most likely. Anyone got any ideas? My google-fu hasn't been able to turn it up.
 

Eyes of Nine

Everything's Fine
Hundred Thousand Kingdoms is so darn good!

So, here's a question for my fellow book-minded people. I'm trying to remember the title and author of a book I had a long time ago. The cover was similar in style to Boris Vallejo, if not by him, and featured a man (wearing army fatigues maybe) with a grenade launcher facing off against a demon. The book itself was a portal fantasy and the main character was some sort of current or former military. It would've been published in the 80s most likely. Anyone got any ideas? My google-fu hasn't been able to turn it up.
Emoji = 😥 because I can't think of anything...
 


Yeah, I'll keep searching, trying to dredge something up. There might have been a motorcycle on the cover as well, but maybe not. Parts of it sound like Mary Gentle's Grunts, but I know that's not what I'm thinking of.
 

Eyes of Nine

Everything's Fine
Hundred Thousand Kingdoms is so darn good!

So, here's a question for my fellow book-minded people. I'm trying to remember the title and author of a book I had a long time ago. The cover was similar in style to Boris Vallejo, if not by him, and featured a man (wearing army fatigues maybe) with a grenade launcher facing off against a demon. The book itself was a portal fantasy and the main character was some sort of current or former military. It would've been published in the 80s most likely. Anyone got any ideas? My google-fu hasn't been able to turn it up.
Is it...

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the Doom one looks the closest
 


Nellisir

Adventurer
Hundred Thousand Kingdoms is so darn good!
Hundred Thousand Kingdoms pushes my buttons like they're broken. And that scene? Where whats-her-face gets seriously pissed off at the thing? :LOL::ROFLMAO::LOL::ROFLMAO::LOL::ROFLMAO::LOL::ROFLMAO:

Anyways, Hundred Thousand Kingdoms is a "lighter" read than Broken Earth. More traditional, but still amazingly well-written. Some authors have a gift for writing that's effortless to read; NKJ is up there. (BE gets twisted because of the shifts in narration. HTK doesn't have those shifts.)
 

Pawndream

Explorer
Hundred Thousand Kingdoms pushes my buttons like they're broken. And that scene? Where whats-her-face gets seriously pissed off at the thing? :LOL::ROFLMAO::LOL::ROFLMAO::LOL::ROFLMAO::LOL::ROFLMAO:

Anyways, Hundred Thousand Kingdoms is a "lighter" read than Broken Earth. More traditional, but still amazingly well-written. Some authors have a gift for writing that's effortless to read; NKJ is up there. (BE gets twisted because of the shifts in narration. HTK doesn't have those shifts.)
Good to know. I just came back from the library with the 3rd book in the Broken Earth trilogy and was telling my wife that the narration shifts were part of the problem. But it's also the techno-magic babble that ops up from time to time too.

Definitely keeping my eyes out fr the Thousand Kingdoms books. Thanks!
 

Pawndream

Explorer
Read the graphic novel, Gary Gygax and the Creation of D&D: Rise of the Dungeon Master today.

Quick read. Good topical/biographical overview and homage to one of the creators of RPGs. The author also did a good job of showing D&D's connection/influence on computer games and pop culture in general. Artwork was nice and reinforced the story in creative ways.
 

Eyes of Nine

Everything's Fine
Heh, Doom did come up a lot in my searches. But I think I found it! I decided to try searching by artists similar to Frazetta. This came up when I looked for covers by Ken Kelly:

View attachment 124240

Published in 1988 and it mostly fits the details.
So, ummm... That looks like it could be a really cool D&D (a la Barrier Peaks) setting... Please do let us know how it is.
Ah, a bit of reading reveals that it's the 2nd volume in a trilogy that never was completed due to the passing of the author.
 

Eyes of Nine

Everything's Fine
Trying to find the book above, I came across author Jo Clayton (not to be confused with Jo Walton, which I did at first). Anyone have any feedback?

Here's her longest series.

 

I will. I ordered the first volume to start, because I'm not a heathen.

So, ummm... That looks like it could be a really cool D&D (a la Barrier Peaks) setting... Please do let us know how it is.
Ah, a bit of reading reveals that it's the 2nd volume in a trilogy that never was completed due to the passing of the author.
That's a read full of charm, definitely. If you haven't already, Empire of Imagination, which is also a biographical work on Gary Gygax, is worth checking out. The point of view used takes some getting used to, but it's pretty solidly researched.

Read the graphic novel, Gary Gygax and the Creation of D&D: Rise of the Dungeon Master today.

Quick read. Good topical/biographical overview and homage to one of the creators of RPGs. The author also did a good job of showing D&D's connection/influence on computer games and pop culture in general. Artwork was nice and reinforced the story in creative ways.
I finished Kyrik Warlock Warrior. It was a quick read, and serviceable. But it lacked the vitality and brawling good spirit of the Kothar tales. Next up, I'm finally getting around to reading Orwell's 1984.
 

I finished up Wickedly Dangerous today and am starting up the next book, Wickedly Wonderful, which features a completely different Baba Yaga (it turns out there are three of them currently assigned to the US). I thoroughly enjoyed the first book so I'm looking forward to this one, which takes place on the California beach and will involve various aquatic fantasy races, apparently. It should be interesting.

Johnathan
 

Nellisir

Adventurer
Trying to find the book above, I came across author Jo Clayton (not to be confused with Jo Walton, which I did at first). Anyone have any feedback?

Here's her longest series.

So, I actually just read a Jo Clayton book a month or two ago. In my teens & early twenties I read bits and pieces of several of her series. She tends towards SF more than fantasy, but it's SF seen through a "fantastic" filter, if you will. (Not a lot of technobabble; technology isn't distributed evenly and, while clearly technological, it's not endlessly "explained".) She's definitely one of the authors that shaped my reading.

I highly recommend Drinker of Souls if you can find it. It's unabashedly fantasy (it got turned into a trilogy later with SF flavoring, didn't care for that), and just cool in many ways. It epitomizes a certain flavor of fantasy that doesn't seem to exist anymore (I think of it as '80s-style). Not bad or dated, just not done.
 

Cadence

Legend
Supporter
Finished re-reading books 8 and 9 of Glen Cook's Garrett Files. Maybe stronger than the first six (which are spectacular) in terms of world building, but there are about four pages worth of text scattered over a few dozen pages of books seven through nine (flirtation and pick-ups) I really wish could be re-written. Those parts were pretty bad. My memories of the next several are that I didn't like them as much, so I'm switching series for a break and am re-reading his Dread Empire series now.
 

KahlessNestor

Adventurer
Ordered and awaiting Raising Steam by Terry Pratchett.

Still reading Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow.

Still reading The War on Cops: How the New Attack on Law and Order Makes Everyone Less Safe by Heather MacDonald.

Reading Star Wars Edge of the Empire: Far Horizons sourcebook.
 

Finished 1984 and oof! It's the kind of book that will always feel prescient, for it understand power and the abuse of power so well.

Now I'm reading Tamsyn Muir's Harrow the Ninth. I am absolutely giddy - I've been waiting a year for it.
 

COMING SOON: 5 Plug-In Settlements for your 5E Game

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