Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Went to the bookstore...

... and got _The Sharing Knife_ by Lois McMaster Bujold.

Update: And it's only the first half! Grrrrr... hate that. And I did like the story, over all, and desperately want to know what happens next and I *really* don't want to pay for the hardcover in July. It's mostly a romance though it doesn't quite follow the standard romance arc, it's more... realistic... if such a word can be used for a fantasy. I mean... the two people don't go about three quarters of the book believing the other person hates them.

I also suspect that the girl lying about her age that she's 20 was originally much younger than what it finally gives as her "real" age.


Blogger Ymarsakar said...

I noticed that when McMaster slotted in the romance for Miles, it was part of the plotline, not just the main arc itself. Although it was, for that book, but it felt more like just part of the storyline, where the romance is only part of the storyline, not the whole storyline.

9:03 PM  
Blogger Synova said...

Yeah. I suspect that the romance rounds out the "end" of this half of the story to give it a conclusion of sorts and the main "save the world" plot will conclude in the second book.

I'm still rather peeved that she wrote a book that really *doesn't* end in one volume. That was one thing that I always thought she did right and should be a guiding light for writers and publishers everywhere. Every book, complete in itself.

Her other books are. They are related. What, are there 15 or more Miles Vorkosigan books? They are related but they are all complete and can be read alone or out of order.

9:56 PM  
Blogger Ymarsakar said...

I don't like Robert Jordan esque series because of the loose ends. I don't like loose ends in war or politics, and I sure as heck don't like it in books. Or maybe it was the other way around. Maybe I saw too many things that folks and authors let "slide", and they were just around tormenting the main characters. And this lead me to towards the real world belief for Total War and tieing up "loose ends". Permanently.

Fight with Japan? Beginning, middle, End. Finito. Israeli wars" Beginning, middle... beginning, middle, beginning. Ya.

2:36 PM  
Blogger Ymarsakar said...

Hey SYnova, did you ever get a chance to check out the Firestaff series?

10:15 PM  
Blogger Synova said...

Doesn't ring a bell. I just bought the Phase Change bundle of Liaden books by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller from Baen e-books though.

8:31 AM  
Blogger Ymarsakar said...

You don't remember that free online series of fantasy books I told you about, designed specifically to address all the issues people like me become pissed off at Wheel of Time about and some other fantasy series? That was a mouthful it seems.

Here's the Link

9:41 AM  
Blogger Ymarsakar said...

So do you remember it now?

6:03 AM  
Blogger Synova said...

Yes, I remember it.

I find it a bit hard to get into though, and when I've looked at it haven't read very far.

11:13 AM  
Blogger Ymarsakar said...

I think Subjugation is easier to get into. You can find it on the same site. I started with Subjugation and the author at the time hadn't yet finished it. So I when I went and googled for more chapters, since it seemingly stopped at Ch14, I found complete novels by him. This was just what I was looking for, complete series, although the subjugation chapters were still being outputted at a slow though regular pacing after some hiatus. Which I wasn't around for.

In conclusion, you might thus wish to start on Subjugation. Because it starts with romance, uses psionic powers, so there's that technology-magic thing going on that David Weber wrote about, Tinker, the paranormal-extra Ukiah, and the usual blend of magic, technology, and weird stuff from sci-fi.

The Firestaff 5 ology is more like Honor Harrington. Except more methodological in how it builds its case. So you start with the small town stuff, innocent guy not knowing what's up, to the big career folks, generals, admirals, movers and shakers. It has that same kind of plot development for both Firestaff and Subjugation (now complete). Except Subjugation was Firestaff all sort of compressed together. Which set a faster pace, even though it didn't look that fast in retrospect. Because Fell the author, loves writing each chapter as if it was a stand alone. You know, beginning, middle, and end. It is just how he organizes his stuff, but I find it intriguing, because he would seemingly wrap up a plot 'theme' in a chapter or 3. And his ending sounds like the ending to some kind of other novel, but then another chapter starts. ONwards.

There were slow paces and there were times which I had to go back to the middle of the book to start reading it once new chapters were out. But I never found that too jarringly, certainly not as Jarringly as reading Nicomachean Ethics once I lost my place.

One theme you might particularly like is the action romance theme arcs, Synova, central to his stories. They develop into unconventional forms true, but no more unconventional than say, Tinker. More like Michael Williamson. (Son of William, I love that lore)

Fel is one of the writers, given my experience with David Weber and John Ringo and all the other military history subjects I started reading partially because of those author's works (Belisarius too), that actually is able to describe tactics, innovation, the melding of science, advanced tech, aliens, and personal powers into an amazingly complex yet logical and consistent piece. His action scenes are like David Weber esque, with all of the complexity and human interplay, although Fel is bigger on the action and dialogue, rather than internal dialogue i.e. Weber. (for his latter 5 ology that is. Beginning, was different, a lot more personal.)

So basically, when he writes about a siege of a city, it makes sense. In addition to how it is consistent with the world he has made. He even surprises me with the innovative and mixing he does with the tactics of the enemy. One of the ways I knew I was getting military tactics was that the scenarios Weber and Co developed would no longer surprise me and make zero sense to me. When I could predict what they should do and it matches with what they will do, something synched.

This might not be your thing, but the military tactics/strategy/logistics stuff is one of its chief attractors for me.

That and the use of amazing powers to annihilate your enemies. That 2.

12:59 PM  

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