Re Best of 2003, Belated

Ven vendersleighc at yahoo.com
Fri Jan 23 21:27:38 EST 2004


Hi everybody,
             as the list has started chugging on
apace again (but is mostly discussing books I
haven't heard of, not that I have a problem with
that,* do carry on!) I decided to dig out my best
of 2003 notes.  

Best of the Year: it's a tie between Robin Hobb's
Fool's Fate and the Merlin Conspiracy. Two very
different reading experiences for me. It's not so
long since I wrote about FF, and I believe its
not out in the US yet, so I'll just reiterate
that this was a totasl immersion character
identification experience and I loved it.
I've read TMC three times so far, as I sort of
expected it seems a tighter novel with every
read, as I become more aware of the interweavings
of incident character and theme. 

Books I can't give a final mark to: Steven
Brust's Viscount of Adrilankha and The Lord of
Castle Black. Brust continues to amuse and
delight. I really enjoyed seeing familiar
characters like Morrolan and Teldra through the
Paarfi filter. I'm waiting for the final volume,
Sethra Lavode, before I'll really kmnow what i
think.

Biggest disappointment, I don't expect to find
much agreement with this but I found Flewellings
Hidden Warrior rather a let down. Once the
spoiler from the first novel had become partially
unravelled the dsecond seemed a lot more like a
typical genre fantasy thing, not a bad gft just
an ordinary one.

Non SF: The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles by Haruki
Murakami. I was lent this or I would almost
certainly not read it. I'm glad I did.  I'm still
not entirely sure what happened, what really
happened, I'm still thinking  about it......

A couple of good discoveries: Victoria Clayton,
British romance writer. I find it rare to find
contemporary genre romance that isn't stupid (ie
Mills and Boonish). VC has clearly been reading
Dodie Smith among others, she goes in for
ramshackle properties, self improving heroines,
cute but not too cute children and animals and an
engaging profusion of potential heroes so that
you have trouble picking the right one out of the
herd. 








 

=====
Ven

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