Sci-Fi and fantasy authors...

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AuthorTopic: Sci-Fi and fantasy authors...
Shock Trooper
Member # 3898
Profile #50
quote:
Originally written by premonition:


quote:
Originally written by NaNoWriMo:

quote:
Then look at self-insertions.
What, all the fangirls who go on at length about going to Middle-Earth and seducing Legolas? ^_^

But everyone :wub:'s Legolas!
There is one good fanfic, in which she spends the better part of ten chapters in a severe case of denial, then freaks out when she actually meets anyone of importance. And she doesn't get the elf.

You would be referring to Don't Panic, I believe?

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Posts: 364 | Registered: Saturday, January 17 2004 08:00
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #51
Goodkind's politics interfere with his stories. According to him, it's deliberate. (Also according to him, he doesn't read any fantasy, which includes Tolkien.)

Brooks was one of the earlier folks to jump on the Tolkien imitation bandwagon, and he has his role in the formation of modern fantasy too. Although he has Elves, Dwarves, Trolls, and Gnomes, they aren't really the same as their Tolkien or D&D counterparts. On the other hand, I just don't really like Brooks' style, and his later books have only gotten worse.

I haven't read any Landover books, but my understanding is that they're comic, or at least very light, fantasy. That's always worked well with the earthling style: the incongruities are funny. It's the serious stories that bog down, and even the humor often gets stale.

Turtledove is very imaginative in all his books, although his alternative histories are where I think he really shines.

I've read one Marco book (Eyes of God) and found it largely uninteresting and not worth the time it took to slog through. I'm willing to give him another try, but I don't have any high hopes.

Trademarked worlds always have more bad than good, and my understanding is that Dragonlance is no exception. Weiss and Hickman started out by writing what I've heard described as a great adventure that reads like an RPG log (and was, in fact, turned into a D&D campaign), but it's nothing more.

—Alorael, who feels obligated to toss another author onto the pile: Glen Cook. He managed to create a great, unique world in his first Black Company trilogy. Then he wrote another book, which was also good. Then he spewed out six more Black Company books that each fell farther from the wonderful beginning. Perhaps deciding to take a few characters from one setting and dropping them in another while losing several plot points along the way is a bad idea?
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Law Bringer
Member # 6489
Profile Homepage #52
quote:
Although he has Elves, Dwarves, Trolls, and Gnomes, they aren't really the same as their Tolkien or D&D counterparts.
No, they're not, and after his first book, he went away from Tolkien imitation, but The Sword of Shannara's plot was a blatant ripoff of the Lord of the Rings.

quote:
Turtledove is very imaginative in all his books, although his alternative histories are where I think he really shines.
I definitely agree. I was ony citing his fantasy for the sake of the topic, but his alternate history novels are great. I particularly like the series he started with How Few Remain and has continued through so many novels up through Drive to the East, and will (presumably) continue on.

quote:
I've read one Marco book (Eyes of God) and found it largely uninteresting and not worth the time it took to slog through. I'm willing to give him another try, but I don't have any high hopes.
I haven't read that one. I've only read The Jackal of Nar and The Grand Design, and I enjoyed both of them.

quote:
Trademarked worlds always have more bad than good, and my understanding is that Dragonlance is no exception. Weiss and Hickman started out by writing what I've heard described as a great adventure that reads like an RPG log (and was, in fact, turned into a D&D campaign), but it's nothing more.
You're certainly not wrong, but I felt it unfair to devote a lot of attention to R.A. Salvatore's Forgotten Realms novels (just as Trademarked as Dragonlance) and not mention Weiss and Hickman's Dragonlance novels. They did come first after all. Incidentally, Weiss and Hickman don't just write Drtagonlance novels. Their Darksword Series was quite good in my opinion. The Sovereign Stone trilogy started out good as well, but it sort of fizzled. I haven't read any of the Death Gate series, so i can't really comment on that.

quote:
—Alorael, who feels obligated to toss another author onto the pile: Glen Cook. He managed to create a great, unique world in his first Black Company trilogy. Then he wrote another book, which was also good. Then he spewed out six more Black Company books that each fell farther from the wonderful beginning. Perhaps deciding to take a few characters from one setting and dropping them in another while losing several plot points along the way is a bad idea?
I'm surprised to come across a fantasy author that i have never heard of. Even if i haven't read their work, I usually am familiar with the names of popular authors. I'll have to check those out sometime.

[ Friday, December 09, 2005 12:07: Message edited by: Tyranicus ]

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Posts: 1556 | Registered: Sunday, November 20 2005 08:00
Electric Sheep One
Member # 3431
Profile #53
Yeah, I gave my own little encomium for Mr Cook somewhere on these boards a few months ago. The original Black Company trilogy is still in bookstores, occasionally, after about 20 years. Hard to achieve without doing something right, unless you're L. Ron Hubbard.

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Posts: 3335 | Registered: Thursday, September 4 2003 07:00
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #54
Bizarrely, not only have I found that all but one or two books of the ten Black Company books is in stock just about everywhere, it also seems that it's not always the same book. By visiting several different bookstores and Amazon it's quite possible to purchase the entire series in new copies.

I've heard that Cook's real magnum opus is another series. He'll have to look into it.

—Alorael, who may as well toss in another few authors. Walter Miller's A Canticle for Leibowitz is post-apocalyptic sci-fi like nothing else. It's not really a book written for sci-fi fans, but it is a great book. Gene Wolfe's Book of the New Sun is a somewhat Vancian mix of sci-fi and fantasy with a healthy dose of confused dream thrown in. It's completely bewildering and still both a great work and a great read.

[ Friday, December 09, 2005 14:08: Message edited by: Vizhunairee ]
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Law Bringer
Member # 6489
Profile Homepage #55
Despite not being a big fan of post-apocalyptic literature, I really enjoyed A Canticle for Leibowitz. It's a superbly done novel.

[ Friday, December 09, 2005 12:04: Message edited by: Tyranicus ]

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Mongolian Barbeque
Member # 1528
Profile #56
I read the first two books of Wolfe's series and found it a complete waste of time. Where Vance has mystery and intrigue, Wolfe has clutter and directionless confusion.
Posts: 907 | Registered: Monday, July 15 2002 07:00
Electric Sheep One
Member # 3431
Profile #57
Yeah, Wolfe is famous for 'slingshot endings', but what this really means is that his plots sprawl so awkwardly that he can only wrap things up with an abrupt twist. Some fun stuff, but the beginnings are always the best parts.

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Posts: 3335 | Registered: Thursday, September 4 2003 07:00
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #58
Don't read Wolfe for the plot, because you won't understand. Not the first time through, probably not the second, and maybe by the third you'll give up on ever finding it. It's about a very different world. Even if you never do quite figure out what all those oddly named weapons are and whether they're pointed metal sticks or futuristic energy blasters, or what exactly a cacogen is and why they're around, Wolfe creates a world worth reading.

—Alorael, who can't spel, cant spell, cant' spell!
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Infiltrator
Member # 4637
Profile Homepage #59
I'm surprised no one mentioned Raymond E. Feist, one of the best story tellers in the fantasy genre.

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Posts: 483 | Registered: Tuesday, June 29 2004 07:00
BANNED
Member # 4
Profile Homepage #60
Took me a while to differentiate "Wolfe" and "Woolf", but from the way you describe her/his work, I doubt it makes any difference anyway.

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Posts: 6936 | Registered: Tuesday, September 18 2001 07:00
Electric Sheep One
Member # 3431
Profile #61
Anyone mention Philip K. Dick? I haven't actually read many of his books, but I thought The Man in the High Tower was pretty impressive. I'm told that all Dick's books have one moment at which everything turns upside down; in that one, that moment is at the very end.

EDIT: Thanks to Tyranicus for pointing out that the eponymous architecture was a castle, not a mere tower. Eat your heart out, Icshi!

[ Tuesday, December 13, 2005 12:32: Message edited by: Student of Trinity ]

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Posts: 3335 | Registered: Thursday, September 4 2003 07:00
Law Bringer
Member # 6489
Profile Homepage #62
quote:
Originally written by Student of Trinity:

Anyone mention Philip K. Dick? I haven't actually read many of his books, but I thought The Man in the High Tower was pretty impressive. I'm told that all Dick's books have one moment at which everything turns upside down; in that one, that moment is at the very end.
You're talking about The Man in the High Castle. it's a great alternate history with the real history as a novel if I remember correctly. I loved that book.

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Mongolian Barbeque
Member # 1528
Profile #63
Strangely, I found that to be Dick's most dissatisfying and least interesting novel, even in spite of the van Vogt/Heinlein cameo title character.

EDIT: Gak! I can't believe I missed an opportunity to use the word "eponymous."

[ Monday, December 12, 2005 20:49: Message edited by: IRA Witch Herd ]
Posts: 907 | Registered: Monday, July 15 2002 07:00
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #64
quote:
Originally written by Kasumetoru Sai:

Took me a while to differentiate "Wolfe" and "Woolf", but from the way you describe her/his work, I doubt it makes any difference anyway.
Oh, but Gene Wolfe works so well with a Christ-like figure! And cyborgs in reverse. An photosynthesis. And interludes.

—Alorael, who didn't even manage to finish The Man in the High Castle on the first try. The Book of the New Sun was a close thing too, though. The transition from book one to book two nearly lost him.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Shock Trooper
Member # 3377
Profile #65
quote:
Originally written by cAPSLOCKED dALLERDIN:

You would be referring to Don't Panic, I believe?[/QB]
I am indeed. <g> What's not to like about a character with an insecurity complex as big as the real difference between her and the Elves?

A Canticle for Leibowitz was an interesting read, and extremely well done, though I don't know that I'd repeat the experience. For one thing, books that don't let me put them down tend to interfere with my sociability.

For light reading that still manages to describe every minutae of military life - particularly the bureaucracy - there's always Elizabeth Moon. Her scifi Serrano books are arguably better than the fantasy Paksenarrion series, and the earlier ones of both tend to be less contrived than the later ones. One thing I do find annoying is her tendency to place every main character in a large, politically important and powerful family, Paksenarrion herself being the obvious exception. Though, really, she's not much of an exception by the end of her series.
Posts: 356 | Registered: Saturday, August 23 2003 07:00
Law Bringer
Member # 2984
Profile Homepage #66
Mh. Elizabeth Moon is one author I haven't heard of at all yet. So she writes both SciFi and Fantasy?

On another note, it's amazing you appear to post here again on a semi-regular basis, Prem. Welcome back! :)

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Posts: 8752 | Registered: Wednesday, May 14 2003 07:00
Law Bringer
Member # 335
Profile Homepage #67
I've only read Moon's fantasy (The Deed of Paksenarrion and The Legacy of Gird. The former might be my favorite Tolkien-based fantasy, mostly because the Tolkien elements don't beat you over the head because while there are elves and dwarves, they're mostly tangential to the story. Moon's military background also comes through rather strongly. As Prem says, the first book is the best and the last the worst, although they're all good.

The Legacy of Gird was a let-down, and I'll leave it at that.

The Speed of Dark isn't really sci-fi or fantasy. It's set in the near future and it's about autism. It's gotten rave reviews, but it just didn't quite sound right, and its conclusions irked me greatly.

Speaking of Tolkien adaptations, I think I'll bring up Dennis L. McKiernan, who has by far the most unabashed Tolkien plagiarism I've ever seen. I would go so far as to say that the only reason to read his books is a desire to read something like what Tolkien might write if he wrote more. McKiernan even emulates Tolkien's style to a degree, but he's simply not as good a writer as Tolkien, obviously not as much of a world builder (although he does try), and I found the result more frustrating for its failures than entertaining for its successes.

—Alorael, who may have to find some of Moon's sci-fi and give it a read. From reviews it sounds vaguely Bujold-esque.
Posts: 14579 | Registered: Saturday, December 1 2001 08:00
Electric Sheep One
Member # 3431
Profile #68
One of my Vorkosigan series lists Moon as the copyright holder. Either that's an embarrassing misprint, or there was a serious poker game at some point. Or the two are ONE AND THE SAME!

Well, I've seen a photo of the two together ... at least according to its label ... on the internet ... Hmmm.

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Posts: 3335 | Registered: Thursday, September 4 2003 07:00
Law Bringer
Member # 2984
Profile Homepage #69
There's a series? I only ever read a single Vorkosigan book, "The Warrior's Apprentice". Gosh, what I missed!

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Electric Sheep One
Member # 3431
Profile #70
It's a long series, and although some books are better than others, it doesn't go downhill. It was one of the middle ones that won a Hugo, I believe. Enjoy.

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Posts: 3335 | Registered: Thursday, September 4 2003 07:00
Warrior
Member # 5389
Profile #71
I like David Drake, or at least his RCN series. He has a lot of other work, but I haven't read most of it, and couldn't get into one of the fantasy novels of his (first in a series, so...).

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Posts: 102 | Registered: Wednesday, January 12 2005 08:00
Shock Trooper
Member # 3377
Profile #72
I've always considered McKiernan to be a sort of stock D&D writer, rather than a Tolkien emulator. He's got all the hallmarks of your standard RPG, with all the cliches that come with that. Of course, my opinion may be somewhat biased by having read Caverns of Socrates first, which I quite enjoyed. That book reminded me strongly of the eXistenZ movie, only with less world and more detail.

Aran: aw, thanks. I feel special now. :)

[ Thursday, December 15, 2005 19:38: Message edited by: premonition ]
Posts: 356 | Registered: Saturday, August 23 2003 07:00

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