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  #51  
Unread 29th of October, 2005, 02:19
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Well, it falls under the subcategory of 'science fiction', but Lois McMaster Bujold's 'Miles Vorkosigan' books are funny and well-written. The main character is a self-described 'ugly cripple' who uses quick thinking and a silver tongue to get through situations rather than muscle and blind luck.

And I believe the Miles books were starting to get published well before A Game of Thrones came out, so it's not a Tyrion Lannister clone

Anyway, those are highly recommended. There are two or three prequel books that involve the main character's parents (I think, I haven't read them), but the first Miles book is 'The Warrior's Apprentice'. And you can get the first two books and a related novella in a single bundle called 'Young Miles', here:

http://http://www.amazon.com/exec/ob...books&n=507846
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  #52  
Unread 29th of October, 2005, 02:51
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“ Originally Posted by nightinverse I believe Canticle was the first one... yeah, I had a tendency to leave those books for weeks, imagining how to fill all the gaps. Not to say I disliked them, but they were a tad... sketchy in terms of logic (In a fantasy universe). ”
I have to agree. I read them years ago, and even then they seemed a bit too... I don't know... idealistic? I can only imagine what I'd think of them now if I read them again.
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  #53  
Unread 29th of October, 2005, 07:25
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“ The Cleric Quintet by R.A. Salvatore are great ("are" because it's a series of five). ”
[pedantry]There may be five books, but there is only one quintet. So you should have used the singular.[/pedantry]

I'd like to unrecommend (derecommend?) a book: the Orcs trilogy by Stan Nichols. I bought it hoping that, like Mary Gentle's Grunts! it would be a good book from the orcish point of view. Unfortunatly, it turned out to be puke-makingly bad D-grade fantasy drekk. I have absolutly nothing positive to say about it.

Last edited by Dirigible; 29th of October, 2005 at 07:34.
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  #54  
Unread 31st of October, 2005, 15:39
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Just to add some more. The Axis trilogy (Battleaxe, Enchanter, StarMan) are decent enough books. I found the first half of Battleaxe to be a bit of a struggle but once you're past that it remains entertaining until the end. There's nothing particularly original about the books and they're not the greatest ones I've ever read, but it's well worth picking them up.

A word of warning though; avoid the sequel Wayfarer Redemption trilogy (Sinner, Pilgrim, Crusader). They seem like they might be good at first, but they're not.
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  #55  
Unread 31st of October, 2005, 16:34
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Well, since they haven't been mentioned yet, I officially recommend anything with Terry Pratchett's name in the authorial lines. And now for the recommendation you might actually not have heard of- Jasper Fforde's (http://www.jasperfforde.com) Thursday Next novels. Linked site does a better job of blurbing them than I can.
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  #56  
Unread 31st of October, 2005, 19:01
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“ I'd like to unrecommend (derecommend?) a book: the Orcs trilogy by Stan Nichols. I bought it hoping that, like Mary Gentle's Grunts! it would be a good book from the orcish point of view. Unfortunatly, it turned out to be puke-makingly bad D-grade fantasy drekk. I have absolutly nothing positive to say about it. ”
It had a pretty front cover!
I didn't think it was all that bad, aside from the "let's introduce every fantasy race in the history of the world ever" it was a fun trashy action novel.
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  #57  
Unread 1st of November, 2005, 05:50
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If it hasn't been said yet, Stephen King can write some wicked awesome fantasy.

The Dark Tower series is amazing, a great mix of fantasy, modern, and just a bit of science fiction.

Eyes of the Dragon is a pretty sweet book too, but if you haven't read Kings other works it may seem a bit everyday to you. You just won't understand the horror of the wizard Flagg unless you've read at least the Stand and maybe some of the Dark Tower. I still highly suggest that it be read, as it reads well and is a bit short so if you don't like it you haven't wasted much of your time.

Some of the Shadowrun books are pretty fun, for trashy tabletop RPG fiction.

And I see Salavatore has already been mentioned on this page, at least, but I didn't go back to the last two pages so I'm going to suggest him as well.

Salvatore kind of sucks now in my opinion, but his old books are awesome. Anything before "the Lone Drow" cycle of books is awesome. He wrote several series about the dark elf Drizzt and his companions. If you want to get the whole story start with "Homeland" and go on from there. There is a trilogy before Homeland, but it's mostly about a certain artifact and a certain halfling, from what I'm told. I haven't been able to track them down, so I can give no opinion on them.

Finally, the Dragonlance books "Dragons of a Fallen Sun", "Dragons of a Lost Star" and "Dragons of a Vanished Moon" are all amazingly well done.

That is all.
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  #58  
Unread 4th of November, 2005, 14:07
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The first Drizzt series, Homeland, (don't remember the name of the second one), and Sojourn were all great books.

Also try the Avatar Trilogy by Richard Awlinson
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  #59  
Unread 19th of November, 2005, 00:48
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“ The first Drizzt series, Homeland, (don't remember the name of the second one), and Sojourn were all great books. ”
Exile. And yeah, I actually liked those three.

I'm about halfway through The Black Company by Glen Cook. I'm not terribly impressed with the fantasy elements - a little cliche, if you ask me. However, the style makes up for it and overall I'm finding it an enjoyable read.
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  #60  
Unread 19th of November, 2005, 01:45
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I bought the first book of K.J.Parker's Engineer Trilogy a while ago (the other two aren't out yet, to my knowledge), and it greatly impressed me. So much so that I went off and bought the whole of the Fencer Trilogy too. They're not as good, but they're still worth the pennies. Both are dark and slightly perverse, but Fencer took this to extremes in places, especially towards the end of the trilogy.

Still an' all, they're worth the read.
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  #61  
Unread 19th of November, 2005, 09:07
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“ And I believe the Miles books were starting to get published well before A Game of Thrones came out, so it's not a Tyrion Lannister clone ”
As a point totally tangiental to this thread: all writers steal from one another. It's just the great ones who are never caught.
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  #62  
Unread 1st of August, 2006, 05:55
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So, I started reading China Meiville's Perdido Street Station last night. I've only gotten about three chapters in and so far I am really enjoying the setting and the prose.

Anyone read this, and if so, what do you think of it?
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  #63  
Unread 1st of August, 2006, 06:05
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Never saw this thread before. I have to add in the Conan books. There are three books that collect all the Robert E. Howard Conan stories. If you've never read the sword and sorcery originals, you truly are missing out on some great action sequences, some beautiful prose, and some awesome stories - along with some terrible fight scences, some horrible diction, and some of the worst fantasy tales ever to earn a paycheck. But I love them all.
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  #64  
Unread 1st of August, 2006, 06:16
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“ Originally Posted by Gralhruk So, I started reading China Meiville's Perdido Street Station last night. I've only gotten about three chapters in and so far I am really enjoying the setting and the prose.

Anyone read this, and if so, what do you think of it?
”
I have a feeling my copy of this book is currently residing in Japan. Hopefully my brother will bring it back with him at some point.

I've read King Rat by the same author. It was alright, much like a poor man's Neverwhere. Although I've heard this is by far the worst thing he's written.
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  #65  
Unread 1st of August, 2006, 06:31
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“ I have to add in the Conan books. ”
Post #7 in the thread - I'm a big Conan fan myself .


“ I've read King Rat by the same author. It was alright, much like a poor man's Neverwhere. Although I've heard this is by far the worst thing he's written. ”
Hmmm. Not the glowing review I'd hoped for but at least it isn't a definite clunker.
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  #66  
Unread 1st of August, 2006, 06:38
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I was referring to King Rat there, not Perdido Street Station. A book which I've heard nothing but praise for.
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  #67  
Unread 1st of August, 2006, 07:21
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“ Originally Posted by Gralhruk Post #7 in the thread - I'm a big Conan fan myself . ”
Oops.

Well then, I also recommend Adventure! http://search.barnesandnoble.com/boo...265139&itm=343
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  #68  
Unread 7th of August, 2006, 02:48
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I just recently started a book set during the Napoleonic wars in Europe. The countries have an air force flown by dragons. I'm only about 75 pages into the first book, but so far its held my interest pretty well. It is called Temeraire: In the Service of the King and it is by Naomi Novik
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  #69  
Unread 7th of August, 2006, 04:40
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PERDIDO STREET STATION was a fantastic read, and it really gave the sense of a well thought out setting.

Probably the worst thing I can say about it is that, for me at least, was that I didn't want to read anything else by that author for a while.

Last edited by Darius; 7th of August, 2006 at 05:39.
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  #70  
Unread 7th of August, 2006, 04:43
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Why not?
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  #71  
Unread 7th of August, 2006, 05:38
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Something about the book's ending was less than uplifting and I wanted to take a break from that style for a while.

Mind you, this is just personal preference talking and there could well be those that want to run out and read everything by him that they can get a hold of.
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  #72  
Unread 7th of August, 2006, 09:24
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New book recommendation - Flights - Extreme Visions of Fantasy. A whole bunch of new stories by well-known fantasy writers, edited by the same guy who did 999 and Redshift, both of which are fantastic short story compilations themselves.
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  #73  
Unread 7th of August, 2006, 13:07
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I feel a need to defend Robert Jordan here, after the way he was thrashed earlier. His Wheel of Time Books are one of only a few series I wait for and purchase the new ones the day they come out. Too bad about his blood disease. But anyway, on to the defense - While using the standard farmboy to world savior plotline, he keeps it from a transition into an all-knowing savior, who still makes mistakes and has failings. His characters are very human, which I enjoy. There are rare times when he crosses from descriptive to rambling, and His use of an entire continent's worth of people causes the plots to slow down a bit around book 8, but if you're willing to spend a lot of time devouring a fantasy epic, Jordan's books are definitely for you.
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  #74  
Unread 10th of August, 2006, 23:30
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“ I feel a need to defend Robert Jordan here ”
Certainly if you want to recommend Wheel of Time, this is the place to do it.

The following is not directed at anyone in particular, just a general note that came to mind as I strained to prevent myself from further thrashing Robert Jordan:

While it is certainly useful for people to voice their opinions on the books that come up, I'd prefer things didn't degenerate into detailed arguments about the merit of particular books/authors. If you want to offer an opinion, that's fine - just keep it relatively high level and refrain from rebutting the opinions of others.

In other words, let's keep this thread about recommending books as opposed to dissecting the relative worth of the recommendations.

And no, I didn't like Wheel of Time .
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  #75  
Unread 22nd of August, 2006, 09:38
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“ Originally Posted by chalice Susan Cooper - The Dark Is Rising sequence...They also draw heavily on English myth and folklore; I don't know any US-types who have read them and would be interested to know how/if the stories work for non-Brits. ”
Linking this thread for a friend who needed reqs for some good fantasy books and noted that post by chalice. I did read the Dark Is Rising series when in High School, and greatly enjoyed them. As much as I loved The Chronicles of Narnia series, another British-penned classic children's fantasy series that's still enjoyable as an adult to me (and yes, heavily allegorical, but I think it's perfectly ignorable in itself if so inclined). I recently picked up an omnibus of the latter, and a boxed set of paperbacks of the former, to re-enjoy them. The British aspects struck me as perfectly natural and added to my enjoyment of both series, even if a bit dated at the time, and even more so now. If anything, that heightens my enjoyment; that feeling of going back to another time is as alluring as slipping into another world entirely.

The mythology and folklore drawn on in both also was rather recognizable, as most Euro-American fairy tales are heavily influenced by Arthurien legends and other traditional European mythology, with a few others thrown in for good measure. Adding religious themes is also common in these sort of tales, as many myths were later altered by religious groups to help with conversion.

But yes, I rather liked them
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