Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Down to the Last, a Science Fiction / Fantasy meme

1. The last sf/f book I finished reading:
John Dies At The End, by David Wong

Not really a novel as much as it a setpiece of three novellas surrounded by a disjointed and unreliable narrative. Technically a horror book since the stories revolve around "things man was not meant to know" in the same vein as H. P. Lovecraft and August Derleth, but the stories take weird to a whole new level! The book has a twisted and dark sense of humor, which if you enjoy will keep you laughing on almost every page, and if you don't enjoy it you'll probably find the whole thing a waste of time. Personally, I loved it.

2. The last sf/f book I did NOT finish:
The Magicians, by Lev Grossman

My friends called this book "Harry Potter for adults" and since my biggest gripe about Harry Potter is that the books are simplistic and dull I thought this book would be complex and interesting. Well, it pretends to be complex and is very dull. I never got excited about the magic and the main character is an unsympathetic idiot. I got bored at about the point where the author manages to make collapsible dimensional spaces banal and seemingly pointless.

3. The last sf/f book(s) I bought:
Quag Keep, by Andre Norton

I just got it four days ago. I bought it because it is the very first novel written for a role-playing game campaign world, specifically Greyhawk. Also, you can't really be disappointed with Andre Norton's writing. I'll probably start reading it very soon.

4. The last sf/f book I bought that I already owned:
The Name of the Wind, by Patrick Rothfuss

I've actually bought this book three times. I really love it and try to share it with other people who enjoy fantasy. I think it takes a unique spin on fantasy tropes and unreliable narrators, and I really like the main character, who always comes across as a realistic depiction of a cynical and socially inept young man.

5. The last sf/f book I shared with someone:
Game of Thrones, by George R. R. Martin

I read it earlier this year and enjoyed it. My wife asked to read it when she heard me talking about it.

6. The last sf/f book I raved about:
Altered Carbon, by Richard K. Morgan

Best science fiction book I've ever read! It takes transhumanism to it's logical conclusion and manages to portray a society changed by the digitization of consciousness. It never bogs itself down by asking the philosophical questions posed by digital consciousness, and instead hews closely to a noirish murder mystery narrative which is very easy to get lost in. I can't recommend this book enough, it's awesome!

7. The last sf/f book I did not enjoy at all:
House of Leaves, by Mark Z. Danielewski

Way too long, unnecessarily convoluted, dumb characters, pretentious as fuck, and boring as shit.