Wednesday, January 02, 2008

The Fantasy Review - Part Two

Okay, I am home on my computer now, so let me just finish this up!

The next four fantasy books that I read were all for a younger audience. I think I read more young adult books this year than I normally do, but considering I only really kept track the last two years, it is hard for me to judge. So, the four books were Rowan of Rin by Emily Rodda, Midnight by Erin Hunter, Enna Burning by Shannon Hale, and The Dead Girls' Dance by Rachel Caine. Rodda's book was actually pretty good, I might have to find another book by her one of these days. Hunter's series is cute, all about cats and their adventures. Enna Burning was my least favourite Shannon Hale book. I wanted to like it, but it just did not work for me. Caine's book is another book in her Morganville Vampire series, like I said before, good but not great.

Then, back to Colleen Gleason for the second book in the Gardella Vampire Chronicles, Rises the Night. Like I said a couple times before, I was really surprised that I liked this series, but I do, and I am looking forward to more from her this year. One of the best of 2007.

Then, I went with Gaiman again. I don't hate him, I just don't love him. This time I went the short story route, and I am just not a short story person anyways, so it really does not matter who the author is. Smoke and Mirrors had a lot of interesting stories, so it was a worthwhile read. I will have to dig American Gods off the shelf for this year. See what I think of that one.

Sorcery and Cecilia by Patricia Wrede was horrible. I have read other books by her, and while sometimes I do like them, there is something about her writing style that does not always working for me.

More Gaiman, this time with InterWorld. I would just read my review, it will tell you what I thought of the book.... Then, I read M is for Magic. Most of the stories available in this book have been published elsewhere, but it was still fun. Again, though, short stories are not really my thing.

I also finally read Terry Goodkind this year. I really need to close comments sometimes on series, because he is an author that people have opinions on! It's just like Jack Whyte, people keep telling me that the series loses its steam, but I do not want to hear that, I want to pretend that no one else has read the series and I am first to them. It takes the fun out of it when I am waiting for the books to start to suck. So, I loved Wizard's First Rule and I plan to continue with the series this year.

More Mercedes Lackey, this time with The Fire Rose. I intend to finish this series, but I think I like the Five Hundred Kingdom one better. Then, there are all her other books... I will get to them one of these days!

Luck in the Shadows by Lynn Flewelling was another bad read. I plan to try her other trilogy, though, so maybe I will like it better.

Swordbird by Nancy Yi Fan was cute, but I actually was not super impressed with it. I doubt I will read anymore from her. Moonrise was another good Erin Hunter novel, though.

Then, I moved on to some non-fiction with The History of the Hobbit by John D. Rateliff. I still have not bought book two, mostly because of the price, but I will read it one of these days. I really liked this book, and I plan to read more from and about Tolkien this year.

More Tas! Yay! This time in Dragons of the Winter Night by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman. I think I might read them after finishing the book I am currently reading... I didn't like this one as much as the first one, but it was still enjoyable.

Then, I went on a Star Trek kick: The Battle of Betazed by Charlotte Douglas and Susan Kearney, A Time to be Born by John Vornholt, House of Cards by Peter David, interjection of C.S. Lewis, and then All Good Things by Michael Jan Friedman, Dead in Winter by Michael Jan Friedman, Homecoming by Christie Golden, The Farther Shore by Christie Golden, Into the Void by Peter David, The Two-Front War by Peter David, and finally End Game by Peter David. Then, I returned to it one more time for Mirror Universe: Glass Empires by Various Authors. Then, I never read anymore Star Trek all year!

Next up, Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card. I did not like this book as much as other people either, but it could have been the timing.

Last year, I also read Simon R. Green. I have not reviewed the books yet, though. By the time I do, I doubt I will remember what happened, but I do know that I like this series. It sort of reminds me a bit of Jim Butcher's Dresdan Files, but not entirely. It's fun, though, so I plan to read book three this year. Last year I read Something from the Nightside and Agents of Light and Darkness.

I also read another Robin Hobb book, and I did not review it! That really sucks because I really like that author. I read Golden Fool, another fav from 2007.

Then, more Shannon Hale with Book of a Thousand Days. I liked this one better than Enna Burning. I also read China Mieville for the first time with Un Lun Dun. There were a few issues, and it took me two tries to get into it. I sort of wonder if it was the book I liked or the idea of the book. Then, back to Shannon Hale with Princess Academy.

I really liked this next book because it reminded me a little of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's The Lost World. I love that whole idea for some reason, even if it is not dinosaurs. Chris Roberson had my interest with Set the Seas on Fire.

I finally read Artemis Fowl by Eoin Coelfer. A promising series, but it might be a while before I read another book in it. The Book Without Words by Avi was fun too.

Then, we have Catherynne Valente. I liked this book a lot, but at the same time, I think I expected it to be better. She has a bit of a different writing style that might not be for everyone, but I still plan to read the sequel. In the Night Garden is still worth reading.

Then, we have a long list of books I never got around to reviewing: Brown Girl in the Ring (which I am scared to admit I can hardly remember), Beauty by Robin McKinley (she is a hit or miss author with me. I always end up enjoying her novels, but she is another author with an awkward writing style), The Book of Dead Days and The Foreshadowing are both by the same author (they both had interesting aspects to them, and I plan to read more from him this year), King's Prophecy by Morgan Howell (a book about orcs, which is not something I read much about, so I am intrigued with this trilogy. I really liked this first book). Over Sea, Under Stone is the first book in a series I wish I had discovered long ago.

The last two reads of 2007 were also fantasy. They were two of my favourite reads, and I think they were probably my two favourite young adult books. In the top five anyways. They were The Sweet Far Thing by Libba Bray and The Blue Girl by Charles de Lint.

So, the top reads (in no particular order) are (in list form):
Beauty by Robin McKinley
The Rest Falls Away/Rises the Night by Colleen Gleason
Moon Called by Patricia Briggs
Fool's Errand/The Golden Fool by Robin Hobb
The Eagle's Brood by Jack Whyte
Dragons of the Autumn Twilight by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman
Stolen by Kelley Armstrong
Flight of the Nighthawks by Raymond Feist
The Briar King by Greg Keyes
The History of the Hobbit by John Rateliff

Young Adult Favourites:
The Blue Girl by Charles de Lint
The Sweet Far Thing by Libba Bray
The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale
Inkheart by Cornelia Funke

Favourite New Author (to me): Robin Hobb
Favourite New Author (published first time): Colleen Gleason
Favourite Old Author: Jack Whyte, Patricia Briggs, and Libba Bray

You know, I think I might see where my reading started to slide. Most of the books I chose for my favourites happened in the first 100 books that I read this year. After that, there were a lot of really bad books and a lot of just average books. No wonder I struggled the second half of the year... There were other reasons too, but that would not help.


  1. Hi! I'm coming by, it's my promise to you. :P And I'm going to read Moon Called - soon.

  2. Anonymous11:39 PM

    I will definitely read Sword Quest by Nancy Yi Fan. I think Sword Quest is even more exciting than Swordbird!

  3. This was a really fun post to read. I'm adding several of these books to my wishlist. :-)


Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

I am so sorry, but I turned anonymous commenting off. I have had it from the very beginning, but that is how the spam is getting by my spam filter at the moment. If it is a big deal I will turn it back on and moderate all comments. I also changed moderation from older than 14 days to older than 7.