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Old 11-01-2009, 01:30 AM   #61
Archergal5219
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Also that horrible Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman.... does that count?
I liked The Graveyard Book well enough, but it seemed a little derivative of A Fine and Private Place, by Peter S. Beagle. Which is a FINE, and sweet book.

And I quite liked Nation, but I listened to it rather than reading it on paper. Stephen Briggs (and Nigel Planer) make Pratchett's stuff AMAZINGLY good.
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Old 11-01-2009, 03:55 AM   #62
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The Prince of Nothing Trilogy by R. Scott Bakker. I read all 3 books in a 2 week period since my local library had all three (a rare occurrence!). I struggled through the first two, determined to finish the trilogy and the third was just a total disappointment. The ending didn't bring any conclusion to the trilogy... most likely to leave things open for another trilogy to follow. I will definitely not attempt any further additions to the series.
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Old 11-01-2009, 05:05 AM   #63
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It's only insurmountable if you think you need to do them all in one sitting. Just do a few every day or so and you will eventually have them all entered. Of course, ordering a Cue Cat bar code scanner and using that saves a lot of time.

It actually went a lot faster than I expected.

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Does that come in Wifi or Bluetooth perhaps?
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Old 11-01-2009, 08:59 AM   #64
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I admit it. I started entering books into library thing. But like most people here...I have a LOT of books. The task...seemed insurmountable. I lost interest after the first 50 or so...
When I started to add a few books to Shelfari, I somehow got the idea of adding all books I could remember having read (from 15-16 yr.). It was rather fun. I don't own many books, so I had to go to the library and check the shelves. I think I got most of them - I re-read a lot so that made the number smaller - re-reads turned out to be close to half of what I'd registered
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Old 11-01-2009, 09:19 AM   #65
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Stephen R. Donaldson
I enjoyed the Thomas Covenant series, but I can see how others would not. If you don't like crappy anti-heroes who don't learn (like in real life), you won't like Covenant.


That's an apt description of the protagonist. Thank you.

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Terry Brooks
I read Sword of Shannara and thought it was awful. I was very much put off by how similar it was to Lord of the Rings, and my inner sense of cognitive dissonance kept ringing because the writing was so clumsy and awkward. I did, however, recently read and enjoy "Magic Kingdom for Sale". Not the best book around, but it was cheap and I wanted some comforting fantasy.
How did you mange to get past the, um, "prose" in "Magic Kingdom? It was all I could do not to toss the book against the wall in some patches.
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Old 11-01-2009, 09:29 AM   #66
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I really enjoyed the Thomas Covenant Trilogy - but my God! - Covenant never learned and he continued to whine his way through a whole series of titles.

Don
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Old 11-01-2009, 10:56 AM   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archergal5219 View Post
I liked The Graveyard Book well enough, but it seemed a little derivative of A Fine and Private Place, by Peter S. Beagle. Which is a FINE, and sweet book.
Not sure if Gaiman was influenced by A Fine and Private Place, but The Graveyard Book is essentially a retelling of Kipling's Jungle Book, complete with plots and character analogues. (PS. It's a homage, not a plagiarism, and there's no attempt to conceal the source material.)

Last edited by wayrad; 11-01-2009 at 11:35 AM.
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Old 11-01-2009, 11:19 AM   #68
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I read a number of stories years ago by Robert Moore Williams, and found them to be OK, but that was back in the days when I was reading and discovering the older Fantasy writers.
Williams was a competant hack, adept at turning out copy the editor wanted. If I wanted to be snarky, I'd say "I read SF. Williams wrote SciFi." What he did wasn't at all to my taste, but it fit a number of other's palettes.

Quote:
About the time of the Ballantine Adult Fantasy Series, I also discovered Fletcher Pratt, and especially enjoyed the "The Well of the Unicorn," although that was not - as you know - published in that series.
Pratt is also the author of what may be the best one volume history of the US Civil War.

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I also read a number of deCamp/Pratt collaborations, but didn't particularly enjoy them.
Which? I like the Incompleat Enchanter series.

I'm also fond of _Land of Unreason_. The protagonist is stationed in Scotland during WWII, comes home from a night of drinking deciding he doesn't need more alcohol, and drinks the milk left out in the saucer for the brownies and replaces it with the scotch he didn't want to drink. He goes to bed, and awakens to discover he is being kidnapped to faery land by a bunch of drunken elves...

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You're right about the completion of the Conan stories from Howard's notes. I also had, back in those days, a huge collection of Amra. That was a very scholarly and enjoyable fanzine.
Yep. Editor George Scithers took S&S seriously, and people like De Camp were contributors.

George was an officer in the US Army Signal Corps for much of the period Amra was published, and managed the logistical issues of publishing Amra from places like Korea. (He retired as a Lt. Colonel in the '70s.) He also described amusing encounters with Army security, as they attempted to understand his fan activities, and things like his membership in "The Cult of the Nameless", a long running Amateur Press Association I was also involved in back when.

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Old 11-01-2009, 11:31 AM   #69
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I like original Conan stories by Robert E Howard very much, and I find stories written based on Howard's notes readable - but I never found any other author who could write a Conan story in the spirit of original stories. The continuations were either boring, if nothing happened, or horrible when the author was trying to write in his own style in Conan universe. I remember particularly disgusting butchering of Conan and Belit's personality by Poul Anderson - one of the worst books I have ever read.
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Old 11-01-2009, 12:32 PM   #70
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OK, everyone is going to hate me, but...... the last 3 books of The Dark Tower series. Also that horrible Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman.... does that count?
Graveyard for me was DNF. I didn't give it much of a chance, and perhaps that is because I read a short story by Gaiman over at BSCreview (Heliotrope is the online magazine.) OMGosh. That story was...sorry, I have to say it...soooo bad. SO BAD. So when I wasn't enjoying Graveyard, I just took it back to the library. It wasn't horrible, but I had no...nothing grabbed me about the ghosts. Then too my immediate reaction was sympathy for the little kid and I just wasn't sure I was in the mood to read about the poor guy.
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Old 11-01-2009, 07:37 PM   #71
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John Norman's Gor Series is for me the worst written fantasy series of all time. I'd be hard pressed to decide which I hated more, the content or the prose style.
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Old 11-01-2009, 08:25 PM   #72
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Originally Posted by DMcCunney View Post
How did you mange to get past the, um, "prose" in "Magic Kingdom? It was all I could do not to toss the book against the wall in some patches.
It wasn't the style that got to me so much as the fact that every single plot development hinged on one or more characters behaving with incredible stupidity...
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Old 11-01-2009, 08:53 PM   #73
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John Norman's Gor Series is for me the worst written fantasy series of all time. I'd be hard pressed to decide which I hated more, the content or the prose style.
The content didn't bother me for the first five or six Gor books. After that, the female slavery and BDSM became foreground elements and the point of the books. The closer Tarl Cabot got to being a true Gorean male, the more boring and one dimensional he became, and the less interesting the books were.

Stylistically, Norman is prone to expository lumps, like interrupting the building description of a sea battle with a pages long digression on Gorean shipbuilding technology and naval tactics.

Amusingly, some of the Gor Books were returned to print in the 90's by porn publisher Masquerade Books.
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Old 11-01-2009, 09:00 PM   #74
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It wasn't the style that got to me so much as the fact that every single plot development hinged on one or more characters behaving with incredible stupidity...
The late SF writer/editor Damon Knight talked about First Order and Second Order Idiot Plots. A First Order Idiot Plot only works because the protagonist is an idiot. A Second Order Idiot Plot only works because everyone in the book is an idiot. Thinking about it, "Magic Kingdom" might qualify as Second Order.

Someone in another forum once asked if there were Third Order Idiot Plots that required the readers to be idiots. I said "Yes, they're called Star Trek novels...", grinned, ducked, and ran.
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Old 11-01-2009, 09:07 PM   #75
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Thinking about it, "Magic Kingdom" might qualify as Second Order.
Precisely.
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Stylistically, Norman is prone to expository lumps, like interrupting the building description of a sea battle with a pages long digression on Gorean shipbuilding technology and naval tactics.
Oh, you mean like David Weber...
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