Archive for August, 2012

I talked about the Way of Kings in my earlier post about Touch of Power, and I decided to write a review about it. The Way of Kings is the first book of a planned 10 book series called the Stormlight Archive set in the world known as Roshar. Roshar is plagued by high storms at a near daily basis, and fauna and flora have adapted to their surroundings and most of them are crustacean of nature. The whole basis of this series is that a thousand years ago, there were these great heroes, and they suddenly abandoned their weapons, and left the people to fend for themselves.

The book was beautifully done and stands at a whopping 1,036 page book. You heard right. And that’s the epub version. It’s probably way longer in the paperback version. Back to the story. There are basically three main protagonists. There’s Kaladin Stormblessed, a former captain in the army that is now a slave working in a bridge team, and has to deal with seeing his comrades fall to the arrows of the enemy as they lay down their bridges to cross some terrifyingly deep chasms. There’s Dalinar Kholin, the brother of the king that is killed in the Prologue, and because he was drunk and unconscious during the death of his brother, he has now taken to following the rules assigned to the army thousands of years ago to the absolute letter. Finally, there’s Shallan, who is trying to track down an elusive scholar/heretic called Jasnah Kholin (Dalinar’s niece) and is planning on stealing a priceless artifact from the unsuspecting scholar.

All in all, the book was just astounding, and I loved every page of it. The book is split up into parts, and in each part, there is a brief intermission or interlude, and you’re introduced to the perspective of an entirely new character and will be shown the rest of the world that’s intelligently crafted by Brandon Sanderson. But, in case this might confuse you, I would suggest you read only the chapters integral to the plot, I.E. the chapters in Dalinar’s, Kaladin’s, Shallan’s, Adolin’s (deuteragonist), and Szeth’s (technically a protagonist, but his chapters are just so few.)

The plot was masterfully done, and I simply loved the magic system that Sanderson has crafted for Roshar. I can’t even begin to think of a description adequate enough to convey the brilliance of the book. You are introduced to entirely new creatures such as the Parshendi and the Parshmen. Two species so alike to each other, yet so different in mannerisms, skills, and intellect. You will become emotionally invested in the characters as they tread carefully around the dangerous political ground of the war going on, as they grieve after a heartbreaking death of their comrade, or as they contemplate the consequences of the act they are about to commit. You’ll be in a roller coaster of a ride.

If I was forced to find a few problems with the book, and yes, this is me forcing myself. I would have to say the problem with the book is that it takes a few more dozen pages than most regular people would like before you’re hooked into the story and taken on an adventure you’ve never seen before. But, if you’re an avid fantasy fan, you’ll have absolutely no problem with that.

I’ve also noticed that some people have difficulty with the fact that you’re not really told what is what in the Prologue, but if you just tough it out, it will all be explained within the next few chapters. If not, then it’s probably integral to the plot of the next books. Here’s another problem that is so minor that I ignored it. The series has a planned 10 books in it, in relation to the fact that 10 is a holy number in Roshar and it takes 10 heartbeats to summon your Shardblade (their almighty powerful weapons).

Some of you may have a problem when it comes to waiting such a long time for the next book, but I don’t regret reading it for a second. It just means that I get to have an excuse to re-read the previous book each time before the next one comes out so I can catch myself up on the story.

Now, go read it now, or ELSE.

Oh, you think I’m kidding? -raises shotgun toward your head- That’s right. Go read it.

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When I first heard about Maria V. Snyder’s new book, I immediately thought of disaster, train wrecks, and nuclear bombs accidentally going off. Why? Well, she debuted with a great book called Poison Study that was literally one of the first books I have ever had the pleasure of reading, and I loved it. Sure, I’ve read some better books, but it was pretty damn good at the time. So, when I heard she was making a spin-off series from the original trilogy, I was ecstatic. Then I heard about the protagonist. Imagine, if you will, if you’d just finished reading about a strong woman that did not shy away from danger, yet still knew the meaning of fear and was human in the sense that she wasn’t perfect. Then imagine that you read a book supposedly considered its successor where the protagonist is a weak willed worm that cannot even stand up for herself to the simplest things. I’m not saying you have to be powerful to be strong, but if you have a weak personality, weak power, AND a weak story… Well, it just doesn’t sound all that good.

So, naturally, I assumed the worst when I heard about a series she was starting about a Healer. Now I scold myself for my cynicism, because it was honestly a great book. I’ve read quite a bit of books set in first person, and while I much prefer third person perspective ( my own style for when it comes to writing), I do like reading some tales in first person. Problem is, only very few people can manage to pull off first person because, first of all, your protagonist HAS to be likable, or your reader is stuck with someone they hate for the next hundred or so pages.

Second of all, I would suggest you make your protagonist very satirical or at least slightly funny. Because, let me tell you, if we were reading Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson, and the entire time, we were stuck with Kaladin… Well, it wouldn’t have been as enjoyable, since I didn’t even like his chapters all that much to begin with. I loved Dalinar’s and Adolin’s chapters, though. Back to the point, Touch of Power was fast paced, filled with dozens of plot threads that were nicely tied up in the end. There are some issues that I did have with the story, though.

For example, the overall mystery they left the ending in. I’m not saying you need to flat out tell the reader, “And they lived happily ever after,” but if you leave the reader without a definite ending of the plot you started out, it’s going to piss off a lot of people. Once again, I go back to Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson. The ending was handled perfectly. Mysteries were finally solved, but mysteries also had just begun, and for me, that was what it made it special.

Don’t get me wrong though. Touch of Power is a wonderful read. You are introduced to fully formed and lovable characters, and brought into a world where healers are executed for twenty gold pieces, realms are at war with each other, and you’re in constant danger of being eaten by a giant flower. It’s a great tale, and I would suggest it to anyone.

First Post

Posted: August 10, 2012 in Details about my books

Greetings, imaginary readers

This is my first post on a new blog, as you can see with your imaginary eyes. So. How does this normally work? Should I tell you about my dream? Well, I didn’t have a dream last night, or at least, I didn’t have a dream that I can remember. Should I tell you about my dreams for the future? I want to be a successful author. I’m at page 300 in my book, and I’m almost finished. Fantasy, mind you. I’m not smart enough to write a purely philosophical book, or a non-fiction, or a regular fiction… Not yet, at least.

So, yes.

Goodbye, imaginary ladies and gents.

Hello world!

Posted: August 10, 2012 in Uncategorized

Welcome to WordPress.com! This is your very first post. Click the Edit link to modify or delete it, or start a new post. If you like, use this post to tell readers why you started this blog and what you plan to do with it.

Happy blogging!