New Book Day. Is there anything as awesome as that? A couple things. Not too many though.
A few minutes ago I finished book four of A Song of Ice and Fire. Due to my penchant for mass market paperbacks (and having all the books in a series match) I can’t touch book five until fall. I read the first one last summer as part of The Sixty-Seven, but at that time, I had read a mess of fantasy books in a row and needed a change of scenery and dove into a pair of recent Honorverse books. I enjoyed it and was also glad I didn’t read the first one back in 96 since the seventeen years from books one to five. For Christmas, I was reading Kylie Chan’s Dark Heavens books when I popped in my new Bush CD, The Sea of Memories, in my car. Obsessed over it for about two months. That CD is the album of Westeros. The single, The Sound of Winter, is specifically Arya Stark’s themesong.
Now I’m gonna talk about the books. If you haven’t read it and don’t want to know…. Thank you! Come again!
So through book two and three, the bar kept being raised. A lot. I’m not going to parrot all the same praise that people give the books. They’ve been around, we all know about the characters and realism and such. I like that magic is slowly being reintroduced into the world. I like the world spanning story and all the points of view… but some are better than others. Three other people in my office at work are at various points in the saga. The most common thing we all have to say is “Gah! Sansa you’re so stupid.” But when reading a chapter that wasn’t hitting a home run, there was always the next that was awesome (and by awesome I mean Tyrion or Arya usually). Two thirds through book three multiple people got killed off and I was like “Holy shit! how are you going to top that?” And it delivered. There was a book throwing moment on page 1137 our of 1138. I dove into book four with excitement thinking it was going to be awesome.
And there’s my problem with book four. I was 700 pages into it when I saw the author note hidden in the appendixes saying “I didn’t want to drop a to be continued, so this book is one POV and the next has all the others.” Really? Seriously? You are going to drop all those bombs at the end of book three and then not follow up on ANY of them?? I get no Jon Snow, no Dany, no one even mentions Catelyn until half way through, still no idea what happened to Tyrion, and the worst part of all… an off hand comment the Onion Knight is dead. WTF??? I know none of GRRM’s characters are ever safe, I get that. But to take one of the cooler ones and just blithely offhand his death without even a chapter about him since book three… lame. Epicly lame.
Brienne was cool… when she was around Jamie, decidedly less so solo. Both of them needed the other to be a real compelling character. The stuff going down in Dorne is pretty cool but there was hardly any of that. By the time it gets interesting, the book is almost over. Cercei is a bitch. Duh. But she turns paranoid and doesn’t make for the most enjoyable read. Sam is ok and getting better, but his part in book four was mostly a long boat voyage. Arya was there but not often.
I took almost two weeks to read book four, that’s the longest I’ve taken to read a book in at least two years. This is partly because of my new work schedule. It doesn’t allow me to sit around and read all night. But still. Reading book four was like a chore at times.
Blah. Done ranting. Anticipation for my new book.
I finally get to start Myke Cole‘s Shadow Ops: Control Point. The praise for this has been all over. I’ve first heard of this from Scalzi. Ever since Borders left Rhode Island and I have nowhere practical to go buy books in state, I’ve been finding that the best recommendations for books come from the authors of other books I like. Hell, I picked up Sam Sykes’ books based off the review “I do not wish Sam Sykes dead.” I thought it was hilariously to the point and read the books.
So yeah. Military officer. Wizard. Go. Don’t need to do much more to get my interest. I’m always looking for the books that are pushing the genre in cool directions. I love the combonation of the elements of tradiational fantasy magic with the modern world. Plopping that down in a modern kind of military. Looking forward to this a lot.
Now I’m going to hit the Publish button and dive into page one.