Into the Looking Glass
Looking Glass #1
4 of 5 stars
Basically take Doom and parts of Starcraft, specifically the Zerg, add in some military hardware jargon and you’ve got this book. Some rogue physicist creates some kind of gate that throws out bosun particles, which allow gates to be opened to other planets. The dreen come through one and we go through another and meet some friendly aliens. The dreen take over planets and suck them dry of resources. The dreen are zerglike, growing creatures for specific needs.
Besides some profanity and some seriously over the top weapon specifications[it IS military scifi though], this was enjoyable. I plan on reading some more in this series ’cause this was a ton of fun.
A young boy is brought up on the streets but taken in by kind people. Goes through various struggles and ends up being the rightful heir to a deadman. More of a social commentary on the workhouses of the times. Horrible places and run by hypocrites. Young Oliver is an innocent and a joy to read about.
The Singer’s Crown
This novel had an interesting plotline. A king dies, his brother kills his heirs and wife but lets his fave nephew live, but castrates him and sends him to live with singing monks. The nephew comes back many years later and retakes his throne.
Ok, now the real review. This was a HORRIBLE book. By horrible, I mean I would gladly do physical violence to the author to prevent her from ever writing again. Why, you ask? Let me tell you. This lady either hates men, doesn’t understand them AT all OR has some insane desire for men to actually be women inside. ALL the male good characters are the most effeminate, emotional, wussy and plain cowardly wusses I have ever wanted to throttle and then run through. How many times can you read about men “…touched his shoulder and gazed into his eyes” without wanting to just totally puke it all up! And the thing is, it is not at all homosexual. It is just girly. Men acting like women, WRONGO!
A story set in a small town. A man raises his children with regard for nothing but “Facts!” One marries a much older man because she doesn’t care about anything and it will help her brother and the brother becomes a selfish idiot. Brother robs a bank and through it all the family realizes that there is much MORE than just “facts!” to life.
Memories of Ice
Malazan Book of the Fallen #3
taking place during and immediately after Deadhouse Gates. Paran is now Lord of the Decks [which recognizes “legitimate” gods]. Turns out that the Crippled god is actually an alien forced into our dimension 100’s of thousands of years ago and now he is trying to destroy everything here in revenge. He is playing a great game of war. This book deals with various factions putting down an army of his that is led by a Jaghut. Details alot more about the Imass and the Jaghuts in the far past. Has lots to do with the rise and fall of gods, ascendants and the like. It is incredibly sad. Yet the writing is SO incredible that whenever I read a fantasy book right after one of these, the fantasy book seems so shallow and 2d by comparison. Read this on my honeymoon, so that might have a tiny influence on why I enjoyed this so much ;D
Malazan Book of the Fallen #2
Oh man, where to start? I’m not really going into the plot, too many different threads, almost Dickensesque. I really enjoy this series. Erikson pays attention to detail, has a very fullbodied storyline and obviously has an overarching storyline.
First thing though, it all gets confusing. Creatures more powerful than gods. So many different kinds, names, etc, etc. It seems to be getting to the point where being a god is pointless because there are so many other things just as, if not more, powerful. Second, nobody is safe. Anybody can die. Of course, nobody is of the Heroic Cast, so you don’t really feel happy or sad about them.
Thirdly, this book seemed filled with the hopelessness of living in such a world. One characters sums it up as “smile, what else is there?” There really is no hope for characters. Even death isn’t always final, nor is it necessarily a release. Nor is god-hood a safety. There are things meant to simply deal with the powerful.
I wouldn’t want to live in this world, not at all! Erikson’s preference for Existentialism shows through, barely restrained.
Barnaby Rudge, Vol. I & II
An idiot[mentally retarded], Barnaby is swept up into mob action of protestants against catholics. Is caught and sentenced to hang, but in the end his many friends save him. Sidestories of an innkeepers son and a smith’s daughter. A catholic landholders niece and a protestant “lord”‘s son. Barnaby’s father, who supposedly died many years ago. The protestant “lord”‘s illegitimate son and his rabble rousing companions. Overall, it was a fictional account of a non-fictional incident [the riots of “something or other” or 1786 or whatever]. Dickens never writes just one story, but about 4-6 interweaving stories that are all tangentially connected. Good stuff!