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Ozymandias
08-01-2008, 08:18 AM
But I need recommendations for a fantasy book or series, or science fiction, to take up some time. And I have a LOT of time, so any and all suggestions will likely be acted on.

I've read Tolkein, just finished my umpteenth reread of WoT (so not interested atm), not a big Hobb or Feist fan, hate Eddings... and have been through Martin, Tad Williams, Salvatore, King, etc...

If anyone has a lesser known, but good set of books to occupy some of my time, advice would be greatly appreciated...

Brita
08-01-2008, 08:21 AM
The Lies of Locke Lamora (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Lies_of_Locke_Lamora)by Scott Lynch.

GonzoTheGreat
08-01-2008, 08:35 AM
I would suggest the Ring of Fire (http://1632.org/) series by Eric Flint. The first two books in the series can be downloaded as ebooks, so that you can try them out easily.

Davian93
08-01-2008, 08:39 AM
Sara Douglass is always good if you haven't read it.

tanaww
08-01-2008, 09:06 AM
I like Neil Gaiman. I'd start with American Gods, then Stardust, then Anansi Boys and whatever else is out there. PTerry and Gaiman's collaboration Good Omens is pretty decent too. Then watch Stardust the movie. DeNiro's Captain Shakespeare is not to be missed.

Ishara
08-01-2008, 09:15 AM
*Predictability alert*

Dude. Guy Gavriel Kay. Please.

If you want "high fantasy" (i.e. dragons and magical wozards etc.) then go for the Fionavar Tapestry first. If you like the more historical fantasy (he takes a time period and then twists it - very cool), then I'd suggest Tigana first. Whatever you start with, he's by ar my most favourite author in the whole wide world.

Speaking of which, is ANYone going to give me back my books?! :(

Davian93
08-01-2008, 09:15 AM
Then watch Stardust the movie. DeNiro's Captain Shakespeare is not to be missed.

LOL...yeah he should have gotten an Oscar for that.

tanaww
08-01-2008, 09:18 AM
Speaking of which, is ANYone going to give me back my books?! :(

:D I love you!

~Looks at bookshelf~

~winces~

I think DC has them!





Okay, I do. I will start one today. I do believe Brat has read them but I've been a bit... busy. I'm sorry. I do love you.

WOW! Those shoes are gorgeous and you're very pretty today.

Isabel
08-01-2008, 09:32 AM
A few nice books:

David Zindell: Neverness and it's following up series 'requim for Homo sapiens'.
**note it can be a heavy read, but I think it's worth it**

Stephen Brust: i would suggest first trying the Vlad Taltos series, Jhereg being first.
** note it's a light, but fun read, a little bit compairing to Pratchett, only a more realistic world**

C.S. Friedman: She has many fantasy and sci fi books all very good.

I also liked Hyperion and Endymion from Simmons.

Elizabeth Moon for a light fun read.

Trudi Canavan: She has two finished series. In the beginning they seem standard, but in the end they are not.

Ishara: Guy Gavriel Kay is indeed a good read;)

Enders Game

I see a forgot a few important once:

David Brin: His uplift novels, they are great:)

Alastair Reynolds: Brilliant Science Fiction: Start with Chasm city

Lord of Light by Roger Zelazny

Davian93
08-01-2008, 09:35 AM
C.S. Friedman: She has many fantasy and sci fi books all very good.

Her "Coldfire Trilogy" is one of my favorites.

John Snow
08-01-2008, 09:42 AM
so Robin Hobb's series......sometimes uneven, but a good read all the way through. Something like 10 books altogether, in 3 sets.
The Farseer Trilogy
The Soldier Son Trilogy
The Tawny Man

Also Kim Stanley Robinson's contemporary disaster series: hang on a moment..*goes off to the Robinson site*
Forty Signs of Rain
Fifty Degrees Below
Sixty Days & Counting
And the three Californias series is very good as well.
Escape from Kathmandu is hilarious, especially if you've been in the Peace Corps.

Sarevok
08-01-2008, 09:45 AM
John Snow: you forgot to add The Liveship Traders trilogy, wich is set in the same world as Farseer and Tawny Man.

Weird Harold
08-01-2008, 10:16 AM
But I need recommendations for a fantasy book or series, or science fiction, to take up some time. And I have a LOT of time, so any and all suggestions will likely be acted on.

Anything by David Weber. He's best known for th eHOnor HArrington series that begns with On Basilisk Station but he's written other good science fiction (including collaborations with Eric Flint in the Ring Of Fire series.

I'd especially recommend Oath Of Swords and the rest of the Bahzell Bahnakson saga since you don't seem to be a Hard SF fan.

Just about anything by Elizabeth Moon although The Deed of Paksenarian et seq is her main fanatasy offering.

The Heris Serano/Familias Regnant series that begins with Hunting Party is good, but the best part of the series is the last few books, the first three or four are just good, not "very good."

The "Vatta's War" series beginning with Trading in Danger is EM's most recent work and worth reading.

Julie Czernada is an author worth looking into; Her Trade Pact Universe beginning with A Thousand Words For Stranger is very good. Her "Web Shifters" series beginning with Beholder's Eye is probably more to a fantasy fan's taste in Science Fiction though.

John Ringo is another prolific SF author whose work borders on the fantastic -- primarily Military SF with a seriously non-PC slant, so he's not for everyone.

If you can find it, the late Jo Clayton's Diadem From the Stars series (and the follow-on series) -- they ran from 1977 through 1988 or so -- is a classic series I re-read about once a year.

Ishara
08-01-2008, 10:55 AM
:D I love you!

~Looks at bookshelf~

~winces~

I think DC has them!

Okay, I do. I will start one today. I do believe Brat has read them but I've been a bit... busy. I'm sorry. I do love you.

WOW! Those shoes are gorgeous and you're very pretty today.

Well, if you haven't read them that's something else entirely!! And busy? Really? Moving across country while simultaneously expanding your family? Pfft. You're slipping ;) Seriously, at least I know where I can find you! Yaga, on the other hand....:(

(And you should SEE the shoes today lady. They're hotness. Grape jelly purple, patent leather stilettos. Hot.)

John Snow
08-01-2008, 11:09 AM
John Snow: you forgot to add The Liveship Traders trilogy, wich is set in the same world as Farseer and Tawny Man.

That's why I was thinking there were more books - forgot about the Liveship series. Anyway, Oz, that stack will keep you entertained for quite a while. Fascinating world she created.

jason wolfbrother
08-01-2008, 11:24 AM
Anything from L.E. Modesitt, Jr. Magic of Recluce series for some cool fantasy. and quite a few stand alone or duology sci-fi novels.

Steven Erikson. Can't recommend him enough. Read Gardens of the Moon. It's tough but worth it. Read Deadhouse Gates. Even tougher but the end justifies the long middle. By the third chapter of the third book you'll be hooked ;)

For something totally different that I've yet to see anyone else recommend try Through Wolf's Eyes by Jane Lindskold. I think there are 6 books total and that is the first.

Rhapsody, Prophecy, Destiny, by Elizabeth Haydon. then Requiem for the Sun, Elegy for a Lost Star, and The Assassin King. There is one more in the series but I don't know if it out yet.

That should give you some time :)

DeiwosTheSkyGod
08-01-2008, 11:46 AM
JONATHAN STRANGE AND MR NORRELL (http://www.amazon.com/Jonathan-Strange-Mr-Norrell-Novel/dp/0765356155/ref=pd_bbs_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1217609101&sr=8-1). One of my favorite books ever. It's standalone, though, so if you're going for a series, maybe it's not for you.

Brita
08-01-2008, 12:04 PM
Dewie (can I call you Dewie? ;) )- I looked at the reviews for Jonathon Strange and Mr. Norrell and I am going to get it as soon as I can. It looks marvelous! And I love stand alone novels, because so often our bookstores are missing various books in a series, and it is just an exercise in frustration.

I'm off to the Used Bookstore directly after work!

Realnow
08-01-2008, 12:30 PM
*Predictability alert*

Dude. Guy Gavriel Kay. Please.

If you want "high fantasy" (i.e. dragons and magical wozards etc.) then go for the Fionavar Tapestry first. If you like the more historical fantasy (he takes a time period and then twists it - very cool), then I'd suggest Tigana first. Whatever you start with, he's by ar my most favourite author in the whole wide world.

Speaking of which, is ANYone going to give me back my books?! :(

Aye those are some great novels, and truly undernoticed. Very much like GGRM and Tolkien kinda blended into a historical-high fantasy is how I would say it.

Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrel does look very good, but about 1/4 into it I was finished, simply wasn't very interesting and had no desire to continue. And this isn't a fantasy novel in the ordinary sense either.

Another standalone novel though that I enjoyed very much was called The Year of Our War. I think there might be sequels now but it can stand alone very well. Its a unique take on fantasy and not to ruin anything but: an immortal emperor chooses the 50 people best at 50 different things (ie Swordsmanship, Bow, Sailing, etc) and they live forever as well. The issue is that anyone can challenge one of them for their spot at any time. Anyways that really interested me and the writing is fairly good as well.

Brita
08-01-2008, 12:40 PM
Thanks Realnow- I'm gonna give Jonathan Strange etc a try- since I can probably get it for fairly cheap and I have a lot of patience when it comes to the development of the plot etc. (EDIT- For example I sloughed through 3/4 of the Marble Faun before I finally gave up- but that might be because in general I enjoy Nathaniel Hawthorne)

But now I will also look for The Year of Our War too. The premise sounds very promising and entertaining.

Terez
08-01-2008, 03:57 PM
Dude. Guy Gavriel Kay. Please.

If you want "high fantasy" (i.e. dragons and magical wozards etc.) then go for the Fionavar Tapestry first. If you like the more historical fantasy (he takes a time period and then twists it - very cool), then I'd suggest Tigana first. Whatever you start with, he's by ar my most favourite author in the whole wide world.
If you're going to read GGK, Ozy, I would suggest NOT starting with Ysabel, which I had the misfortune of doing.

Crispin's Crispian
08-01-2008, 04:27 PM
Dewie (can I call you Dewie? ;) )- I looked at the reviews for Jonathon Strange and Mr. Norrell and I am going to get it as soon as I can. It looks marvelous! And I love stand alone novels, because so often our bookstores are missing various books in a series, and it is just an exercise in frustration.

I'm off to the Used Bookstore directly after work!
I second the recommendation. It starts out a bit slow, but the writing is good so it's OK. But it picks up and gets more interesting.

I also recently read "Mists of Avalon" by Marion Zimmer Bradley. It was good, though not action packed.

Terez
08-01-2008, 05:31 PM
Oh, and I forgot to second Erikson.

Brita
08-01-2008, 06:42 PM
I also recently read "Mists of Avalon" by Marion Zimmer Bradley. It was good, though not action packed.

I read that too, it was just OK.

Marie Curie 7
08-01-2008, 06:53 PM
I like Neil Gaiman. I'd start with American Gods, then Stardust, then Anansi Boys and whatever else is out there. PTerry and Gaiman's collaboration Good Omens is pretty decent too. Then watch Stardust the movie. DeNiro's Captain Shakespeare is not to be missed.

Somebody told me that Neil Gaiman wrote a short story or essay called something like "The Problem with Susan", referring to Susan in the Chronicles of Narnia. Have you read that?

I also recently read "Mists of Avalon" by Marion Zimmer Bradley. It was good, though not action packed.

Yeah, I thought Mists of Avalon was good. Her other related books - The Forest House, Lady of Avalon, Princess of Avalon (there may be others) - were really dull, I thought.

For a really good Arthurian-type series, I highly recommend Mary Stewart's Merlin series: The Crystal Cave, The Hollow Hills, The Last Enchantment, and The Wicked Day. These are my all-time favorites of any books related to the Arthurian legends.

Also, for a different sort of fantasy series, I would recommend Stephen Donaldson's The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever series. His most recent two books in that series aren't as good as the older ones, though, but he sort of came right out and stated that he's just writing them for the money.

JSUCamel
08-01-2008, 07:20 PM
For a really good Arthurian-type series, I highly recommend Mary Stewart's Merlin series: The Crystal Cave, The Hollow Hills, The Last Enchantment, and The Wicked Day. These are my all-time favorites of any books related to the Arthurian legends.

I LOVE The Crystal Cave! I haven't even heard of the others. I must check them out.

Weird Harold
08-01-2008, 07:26 PM
If anyone has a lesser known, but good set of books to occupy some of my time, advice would be greatly appreciated...

A late thought: If you're really interested in occupying a large block of time, Start with the Wizard of Oz and work your way through all of the sequels -- yes there are sequels, 97 of them IIRC.

ETA: I rememberd incorectly: there are only 14 by L Frank Baum, 40 "Canon" Oz books, plus five other "authorized" Oz Books, plus eight to ten unauthorized or "revival" books written in the 80's. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Oz_books)

Still, it's series that takes me a month or two to work my way through even today -- it took most of my elementary school years to work through them the first time (minus the latecomers written after the "famous forty.")

Uncle Fisty
08-01-2008, 08:20 PM
Stephen Donaldson's The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever series
Seconded. They can get pretty depressing, but I like the way he writes.

Also, I'd like to recommend Roger Zelanzy's Chronicles of Amber series. Ten relatively short books, but the man is a great story teller.


Others I've read recently that were good:
Pulman's His Dark Materials
Tad Williams' War of the Flowers
Phillip K. Dick's short stories (he wrote the Minority Report)
Anne Bishop's Belladonna

Oh, and third on the Erikson books. Friggin awesome.

RogueSavior
08-01-2008, 08:40 PM
I like the Once and Future King as my King Arthur book. Call me a traditionalist there, I guess?

I like Tad Williams' Otherland books, but I never seem to get around to reading the last two.

Jeff Lindsay's DDDexter (Darkly Dreaming and Dearly Devoted Dexter (DDDexter - see?) are the ones I own) books were the basis for the TV show Dexter, and the books are just amazing.

S.M. Stirling's (a friend of GRRM's) books Island in the Sea of Time (and its sequels) and Dies the Fire (and its sequels) are among my favorites... That's off the top of my head.

Ah.. you said you read Williams already. Well, I'm leaving it, so there.

Weird Harold
08-01-2008, 09:00 PM
S.M. Stirling's (a friend of GRRM's) books Island in the Sea of Time (and its sequels) and Dies the Fire (and its sequels) are among my favorites... That's off the top of my head.

S. M. Stirling is an author like Eric Flint, John Ringo and Mercedes Lackey who does a lot of collaborations with new authors and has a knack for picking good stories to collaborate on. Anything with Stirling's name on it is probably a good read -- like The City Who Fought in Anne McCaffrey's Brainship universe, which are all good reads but Stirling's Character "Joat" is one of the high points in a generally good series.

Speaking of Mercedes Lackey, her Valdemar books are Numerous enough to keep a reader occupied for a week or two and worth investing the time to find and read.

Crispin's Crispian
08-01-2008, 09:55 PM
I read that too, it was just OK.
That's probably right. At first I was all into her interpretation of the legend, but then I got a little bored with it after I started on American Gods.

Crispin's Crispian
08-01-2008, 09:56 PM
Oh, and I forgot to second Erikson.
Third.

Erikson, IMO, is the best fantasy author out there...of those I've read, anyway.

DeiwosTheSkyGod
08-01-2008, 10:12 PM
That's probably right. At first I was all into her interpretation of the legend, but then I got a little bored with it after I started on American Gods.

Did you like American Gods, SDog? I feel like I'm the only one in the world who didn't.

Terez
08-01-2008, 10:12 PM
Third.
Fourth, actually (you missed Fisty's post). :p

Erikson, IMO, is the best fantasy author out there...of those I've read, anyway.
I still like RJ better but I can definitely see why lots of people like Erikson better, and I've even mentioned before that it's possible I'll change my mind on re-reads (I've only read the Malazan books once).

tanaww
08-01-2008, 10:21 PM
Somebody told me that Neil Gaiman wrote a short story or essay called something like "The Problem with Susan", referring to Susan in the Chronicles of Narnia. Have you read that?

No and I looked at his website for it (he writes some very funny stuff for his website only) and in my copy of Smoke and Mirrors and didn't see it there. Bummer. But I was reminded of another awesome Gaiman: Neverwhere. It was the first one of his I read.

And DC! You didn't like American Gods? Silly! Now I will allow Brita to call you Dewey. I was going to intervene but now... meh

Terez
08-01-2008, 10:26 PM
I loved American Gods, but I can see why someone wouldn't like it.

Sei'taer
08-02-2008, 01:09 AM
Also, I'd like to recommend Roger Zelanzy's Chronicles of Amber series. Ten relatively short books, but the man is a great story teller.

If you're going to go with these you might as well read the foundation chronicles (just the trilogy though, after that they get sucky) and the I-robot books by Asimov.

I hated Thomas Covenant...after the third try at it I just gave up.

David Drake is good if you like books about war. I would say go with Birds of Prey first.

Catherine Christians The Pendragon is a good Arthur book.

Paul O. Williams series called The Pelbar Cycle

And if you like old classic sci fi try Edgar Rice Burroughs starting with A Princess of Mars

And one last one, Michael Stackpoles Dark Glory Wars (I think thats the right name...it's the name of the first book for sure).

DeiwosTheSkyGod
08-02-2008, 08:08 AM
I hope you like it Brita! I've given it to a few people, and it's very love-it-or-hate-it. But if you like her kind of humor, it's a great book.

Marie Curie 7
08-02-2008, 01:58 PM
I LOVE The Crystal Cave! I haven't even heard of the others. I must check them out.

The others continue on from where The Crystal Cave ends, of course, told from Merlin's perspective, and I found them to be as well written as The Crystal Cave. Her telling of the Arthur/Mordred meeting/battle in The Wicked Day still gives me the chills when I read it. :)

I like the Once and Future King as my King Arthur book. Call me a traditionalist there, I guess?

Well, I'd say if you really wanted to be a traditionalist, you'd choose Le Morte d'Arthur, or heck just go back to Geoffrey of Monmouth. :) And though The Once and Future King is based on Mallory, I really dislike White's adaptation. Steinbeck's The Acts of King Arthur and His Noble Knights is better in that regard, though it's written more like a history than a story (kinda like The Silmarillion vs. The Lord of the Rings comparison).

tanaww
08-02-2008, 04:36 PM
Hey Marie?
I went to Neil Gaiman.com again and found that story. "The Problem of Susan" is in the anthology "Fragile Things". I think B owns it so I'll dig for it and read it. I'll let you know.

Mort
08-02-2008, 05:08 PM
Maybe we should just make a sticky thread with a list of interesting books to read? This question pops up now and then. It gets old fast, there aren't THAT many new books coming out :)

Sei'taer
08-02-2008, 05:18 PM
Yeah, I try to make lists and then lose the lists when I go to the bookstore. I have tons of old scifi and fantasy, it's the new stuff I need to get recommendations on...although I've already read as lot of what is posted here.

Ishara
08-02-2008, 06:20 PM
Gah! Too many things to reply to!!!

1. I always recommend either The Fionavar Tapestry of Tigana as the books to start out with for GGK. Ysabel is a break from his previous work for a couple of reasons. It's a sequel of sorts to a world (or book) that he said he would probaby never revisit. It's technically a Young Adult novel, and features a pretty young kid (15) as the protagonist. Finally, in this book he takes our history and twists it in our world. The other books all take place in another world. (all seperate books with beautiful linkages made to other books if you know to look for them) Ysabel made me cry and caused what I'm not ashamed to admit the biggest scene of geekiness I've ever caused. Literally squealed, tried to jump off my couch, tripped over my own feet and fell. crashing, to the ground - all still reading. But to start with, no.

Don't give up on him. He's truly one of the most beautiful, thoughtful and underacknowledged writers of our time.

2. My favourite Arthur story is that of Bernard Cornwell. Hands down. It's dark and dirty and so so engaging.

3. Dexter....I pink fluffy heart the serial killer. Not gonna lie.

Brita
08-02-2008, 06:54 PM
I hope you like it Brita! I've given it to a few people, and it's very love-it-or-hate-it. But if you like her kind of humor, it's a great book.

I like dry humour Dewey, the more deadpan the better- so I have great expectations. I didn't make it to the book store on Fri though- but it will be my next purchase.

Weird Harold
08-02-2008, 07:16 PM
Yeah, I try to make lists and then lose the lists when I go to the bookstore.

Every time you get a recommendation or discover a new title in an old series you need to add to your library, put it on a business card size piece of paper and put it in your wallet. Then when you stop by a bookstore on a whim, you can just dig in your wallet for ideas.

I have tons of old scifi and fantasy, it's the new stuff I need to get recommendations on...although I've already read as lot of what is posted here.

I'm currently reading Accidental Goddess by Linnea Sinclair with Finders Keepers waiting in the wings. Both are standalone Space Operas but with female protagonists and strong love interests.

Like Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series, Sinclair's works borders on the Romance genre (Gabaldon's work is usually shelved in Romance although it has a time travel/alternate history theme) so it's not going to be for everyone.

Terez
08-02-2008, 07:38 PM
I always recommend either The Fionavar Tapestry of Tigana as the books to start out with for GGK. Ysabel is a break from his previous work for a couple of reasons. It's a sequel of sorts to a world (or book) that he said he would probaby never revisit. It's technically a Young Adult novel, and features a pretty young kid (15) as the protagonist. Finally, in this book he takes our history and twists it in our world. The other books all take place in another world. (all seperate books with beautiful linkages made to other books if you know to look for them) Ysabel made me cry and caused what I'm not ashamed to admit the biggest scene of geekiness I've ever caused. Literally squealed, tried to jump off my couch, tripped over my own feet and fell. crashing, to the ground - all still reading. But to start with, no.

Don't give up on him. He's truly one of the most beautiful, thoughtful and underacknowledged writers of our time.
I wasn't planning on giving up on him. When I started the book, I posted this thread at Malazan (http://www.malazanempire.com/forums/showthread.php?t=10672) and got a lot of the same sort of comments as yours.

Marie Curie 7
08-02-2008, 08:27 PM
Hey Marie?
I went to Neil Gaiman.com again and found that story. "The Problem of Susan" is in the anthology "Fragile Things". I think B owns it so I'll dig for it and read it. I'll let you know.

Cool, thanks. I've been wondering what the gist of the story is.

Ozymandias
08-02-2008, 11:23 PM
I like Tad Williams' Otherland books, but I never seem to get around to reading the last two.

Ah.. you said you read Williams already. Well, I'm leaving it, so there.

Its odd, because I found I had the same exact problem with Otherland. I don't really remember them anymore, but what comes back to me always struck me as wayyy too complicated and long for the story. I just read the first two books of his new series (Shadowmarch and Shadowplay) which I immensely enjoyed, but the third one doesn't come out for a few years I don't think.

And as for Hobb... I read the Tawny Man and liked them, but not really enough to go after Liveship Traders with any gusto, and I just read the first book in Soldiers Son and hated it, so I doubt I go on with her.

DahLliA
08-03-2008, 11:08 AM
adding my recommendation of Erikson, reading toll the hounds now and I can barely put the book down :D

Ishara
08-03-2008, 11:26 AM
Well, shit! Your Malazan friends don't understand the concept of a spoiler, do they?!

If you're going to read them, so it in the order they were written. GGK is a BIG believer in not doing the same thing twice and that's why he turns some people off - they don't like change.

So:

Fionavar Tapestry (The Summer Tree, The Wandering Fire, The Darkest Road)
Tigana
A Song For Arbonne
The Lions of al-Rassan (they are all pretty much equal faves, but if I had to pick this would tie for first)
Sarantine Mosaic (Sailing to Sarantium, Lord of Emperors)
Last Light of the Sun
Ysabel (which gains in texture and significance if you've read the Tapestry first)

Birgitte
08-03-2008, 02:09 PM
Somebody told me that Neil Gaiman wrote a short story or essay called something like "The Problem with Susan", referring to Susan in the Chronicles of Narnia. Have you read that?

He did. It is in Fragile Things (which is sitting in all its white tissue paper glory on top of my bookshelf right now). I've read it and found it fascinating, and I've never read the Chronicles of Narnia. It almost made me want to, but the only one I've ever been able to get through was The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. I tried to read The Magician's Nephew once and wasn't that into it.

Anyway, Ozy, I HIGHLY recommend Steven Brust. Start with Vlad Taltos. Technically you can read them in any order. Brust put a lot of effort into that, but it's really best to read them in publication order (which isn't chronological). I also enjoyed The Phoenix Guards, Five Hundred Years After, and The Viscount of Adrilanka trilogy, but they're a bit harder to get through as they're written in Alexandre Dumas's style. Brokedown Palace is good (and a stand alone novel written in the same world as the ones I've mentioned so far). He's also got To Reign in Hell, which is a story about the war in Heaven told in a very original and fascinating way. And he and Emma Bull wrote a book called Freedom and Necessity which is absolutely fascinating. Based in the real world and written in letters (which sounds annoying, but puts a great sense of mystery in everything.) I'll warn you that he likes to mess with styles. None of his books (not counting the one's in Dumas's style) are put together in exactly the same way. It could be annoying for some people, but I think it makes them more interesting. Plus, there's 19 books there. Should keep you busy.

And I really liked GGK, too.

tanaww
08-03-2008, 03:15 PM
Cool, thanks. I've been wondering what the gist of the story is.

The gist of the story is that Susan got screwed over in the Narnia books because she liked lipstick and nylons and invitations to parties. These vices meant that she was denied salvation - apparently she didn't die in the train wreck? Gaiman takes issue with that in his first work of fiction following a couple of months' worth of meningitis. The short story catches up to her in the future after she has become some type of professor. It is a short read - ten pages - and quite interesting.

JSUCamel
08-03-2008, 04:44 PM
I avoid malazanempire.com because they really don't understand the concept of spoilers. I tried to read the Memories of Ice board after I finished the book, and people were talking about things I'd never read (that turned out to be from future books).

I'm not going back there til I finish all the books. Might not even go back there then.

Brita
08-05-2008, 09:43 AM
Every time you get a recommendation or discover a new title in an old series you need to add to your library, put it on a business card size piece of paper and put it in your wallet. Then when you stop by a bookstore on a whim, you can just dig in your wallet for ideas.


This is such a great idea WH- I started my Must Read Business Cards today. Thanks for the tip!

Terez
08-05-2008, 09:50 AM
I avoid malazanempire.com because they really don't understand the concept of spoilers. That's a funny thing to say, considering that Theoryland has practically no regard for spoilers at all, to the point of spoilers being fair enough game even in this forum. :D

I tried to read the Memories of Ice board after I finished the book, and people were talking about things I'd never read (that turned out to be from future books). That would be rather strange - they're usually very anal about enforcing spoilers rules, which is the whole point of there being a separate forum for each book. Most book discussion happens in the Reaper's Gale and Toll the Hounds forums, for that reason.

Case in point - when I finished Deadhouse Gates, I posted something on the DG forum about Duiker being resurrected, and my posts got deleted for being spoilers, even though I hadn't read Memories of Ice yet and was speaking solely about the bit at the end of DG that makes it clear Duiker is going to be resurrected.

SauceyBlueConfetti
08-05-2008, 10:39 AM
For a really good Arthurian-type series, I highly recommend Mary Stewart's Merlin series: The Crystal Cave, The Hollow Hills, The Last Enchantment, and The Wicked Day. These are my all-time favorites of any books related to the Arthurian legends.


LOVE THOSE. My first delving into fantasy in junior high school was those books and I re-read them every few years.

Of cours I also second Ishara's recommendation of GGK.

Terez, did you not like Ysabel for the actual story, or are you referring to the tie in that becomes evident later?

Terez
08-05-2008, 10:56 AM
Terez, did you not like Ysabel for the actual story, or are you referring to the tie in that becomes evident later?
I'm not aware of any tie-in, as I haven't read any of his other books. I just found the writing style to be unconvincing. I did finish the book, and it was okay, not great (IMO).

Crispin's Crispian
08-05-2008, 11:28 AM
If you're going to go with these you might as well read the foundation chronicles (just the trilogy though, after that they get sucky) and the I-robot books by Asimov.

I first heard Foundation as an audiobook...and it was really boring. I then tried to read the actual book, and found that it was exactly the same. Not engaging to me at all.

I hated Thomas Covenant...after the third try at it I just gave up.
Yep, I could see that. It is one of the few series I've read that almost requires too much work to finish. I recently read the Second Chronicles, which were interesting.

I would still recommend them all, though, just because the plot and writing are so good. Just prepare to have to (a) work and (b) be depressed.

Regarding Otherland, I've read the whole thing. The middle section of the series is a bit plodding and long, but it picks up in the last book. I'm still not sure whether I liked the ending or not. The first book is really good, though.

Marie Curie 7
08-05-2008, 01:22 PM
The gist of the story is that Susan got screwed over in the Narnia books because she liked lipstick and nylons and invitations to parties. These vices meant that she was denied salvation - apparently she didn't die in the train wreck? Gaiman takes issue with that in his first work of fiction following a couple of months' worth of meningitis. The short story catches up to her in the future after she has become some type of professor. It is a short read - ten pages - and quite interesting.

Interesting...thanks for the summary -- I'll have to pick it up some time and read it. Nope, Susan didn't die in the train wreck. During The Last Battle, Peter says she's "no longer a friend of Narnia". The normal interpretation of her love of lipstick and such is that Lewis was trying to make the point that too much focus on material stuff won't get you to heaven. ~shrug~

Sei'taer
08-05-2008, 03:47 PM
I first heard Foundation as an audiobook...and it was really boring. I then tried to read the actual book, and found that it was exactly the same. Not engaging to me at all..

I can understand. I really enjoyed them. Y'know, I listened to Bernard Cornwells Arthur books (Winter King, Enemy of God and Excalibur) on tape and just couldn't really get into them. I ended up buying all of them and reading and found that I really enjoyed all of them. If they haven't been mentioned yet, I'd recommend them. Uh, yeah, so I think you did the right thing trying to read the Foundation Trilogy evn after you didn't like the audiotapes. Maybe it has to do with me starting out as a total sci-fi guy and then slowly moving to fantasy as the years went by.



Yep, I could see that. It is one of the few series I've read that almost requires too much work to finish. I recently read the Second Chronicles, which were interesting.

I would still recommend them all, though, just because the plot and writing are so good. Just prepare to have to (a) work and (b) be depressed.

I already sold it back to the used book store...I doubt I'll pick it up again.

Ishara
08-05-2008, 07:18 PM
I mentioned it already (Bernard Cornwell's Arthur series that is), but I'll consider your vote a slow swaying to the "very liberal" side. ;)

tworiverswoman
08-05-2008, 08:30 PM
I like Tad Williams' Otherland books, but I never seem to get around to reading the last two.!!!! you mean you don't even know how it ENDS? GAH!

I notice we're branching heavily away from pure fantasy -- so I'll throw in a second recomendation for David Weber -- he's awesome both in straightforward sci-fi AND in fantasy -- which is damn unusual.

The other top-notch artist in my opinion is Lois McMaster Bujold. I adore her Miles Vorkosigan series -- and she's been putting out some fantasy work that is truly great stuff. Her writing style includes a lot of little wry interjections of what the character is thinking during a given point in the action, which is a technique that I love. Try The Curse of Chalion for one of the best books I've ever read.

Sei'taer
08-05-2008, 08:46 PM
I mentioned it already (Bernard Cornwell's Arthur series that is), but I'll consider your vote a slow swaying to the "very liberal" side. ;)

"Whaa'...NOOoooooooo"

JSUCamel
08-05-2008, 09:42 PM
Honestly, best book I've ever read?

"Battle Royale" by Koushun Takami.

Brita
09-15-2008, 01:09 PM
JONATHAN STRANGE AND MR NORRELL (http://www.amazon.com/Jonathan-Strange-Mr-Norrell-Novel/dp/0765356155/ref=pd_bbs_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1217609101&sr=8-1). One of my favorite books ever. It's standalone, though, so if you're going for a series, maybe it's not for you.

Dewie- just thought I'd let you know that I've finally picked it up. It is different- the humour is subtle and very witty. The characters remind me of a Dicken's novel. I am enjoying it. It is a little slow compared to the usual fantasy fare- I can see why people might put it down.

Crispin's Crispian
09-15-2008, 01:31 PM
Did you like American Gods, SDog? I feel like I'm the only one in the world who didn't.
Just been rereading this thread...and realized I never responded.

Yes, I liked it, but I didn't love it. I feel like he could have done a bit more with it than he did, but it was enjoyable. I did love his characterization--for Wednesday, I kept picturing this guy I used to work for who always wore a gray suit and seemed like a con artist. And for some reason I could totally picture Czernobog and the moon women as real.

And just to add one more recommendation, read Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson. I picked it up on ST's recommendation, and I loved it. It takes a bit of work and thought, but it's well worth it. I'll be interested to hear what everyone thinks or thought of the ending (good, bad, indifferent).

Sei'taer
09-15-2008, 04:30 PM
And just to add one more recommendation, read Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson. I picked it up on ST's recommendation, and I loved it. It takes a bit of work and thought, but it's well worth it. I'll be interested to hear what everyone thinks or thought of the ending (good, bad, indifferent).

Well, even though you know what I think, I loved it. Did you think a lot of it was pretty funny? I laughed quite a few times.

Crispin's Crispian
09-15-2008, 05:19 PM
Well, even though you know what I think, I loved it. Did you think a lot of it was pretty funny? I laughed quite a few times.
Just about every scene with Bobby Shaftoe was hilarious. There was one scene where he was in...Italy...with the plane and the tommy guy. That kicked serious ass.

Bobby Shaftoe has to be one of the best characters in any book I've read in long time.