Monday, March 31, 2008
Saturday, March 29, 2008
Tomorrow is my birthday and to celebrate that I will give myself a gift posting an older review of mine, but a review of one of my most favourite books.
The world of literature would be far more poorer without George R.R. Martin. The author who was nominated and won the Hugo, Nebula, Bram Stoker and World Fantasy awards creates a novel "A Game of Thrones", the first volume in "A Song of Ice and Fire", that made me say only one thing: WOW.
"A Game of Thrones" describes a fantasy world, named the Seven Kingdoms, that resembles medieval Europe and the events that unfold in the novel are very much the same with those from that part of history. The novel has three storylines, not one like many others.
In the first storyline, Robert Baratheon, the king of Westeros after he claimed the crown in battle, visits his old friend, Eddard Stark in Winterfell. Robert asks his friend to become The King's Hand, second in charge of the kingdom, after the mysterious death of the former Hand. So the Stark family, one of the most powerful in the land, is split up. After the return of the king in the capital city, named King's Landing, starts a teribile fight for the throne that involves the Starks and the Lannisters, the queen beeing a decender of the Lannisters.
The second storyline follows the events that occur at the northern border of the land, here lies the Wall, a construction that protects the country from the invasion of the mysterious creatures known as The Others. The story is centered on Jon Snow, bastars son of Eddard Stark, who is recruited in the Night's Watch, the men who maintain and guard the Wall.
The third storyline is set on a continent east of Westeros where we find the Free Cities. Here had refuged Daenerys and Viserys Targaryen, the last known relatives of the previous king and they seek an army to help them retake the country and revenge the death of the king.
The author mixes brilliantly the three storylines so I was never in difficulty when I followed them. The intrigue is complex, surprising, following political conflicts, the struggle for power, betrayals and love stories, and the twists of the situations do the reading more pleasant. And even though the novel has many characters this fact doesn't prevent me in savoring the read, because George R.R. Martin describes them very well, so well that you get attached to the characters. But here I have to warn you, because the author keeps the realism of life in his novel, the characters that we love can die as fast as those we don't find very attractive.
I was thrilled about the fact that the author tells the story through different characters, so we benefit of different points of view about the same events, and this contributes to the atmosphere of the novel. And even though George R.R. Martin doesn't create an entirely new world, in the true sense of fantasy, he comes with many new and original elements like The Others or the cycle of seasons, for example the winter can last a lifetime. At the end of my reading the author left me wishing more,with joy and sadness, and also with questions about the next books in the serie. And if those are equal to "A Game of Thrones" I will be very happy.
The novel has some weak points, but this are very few and honestly I don't want to recall them, so I will give the novel 10 points out of 10.
Thursday, March 27, 2008
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
As I mentioned before my favourite genres are fantasy, Sci-Fi and horror. My most reading material comes from fantasy and it is followed by Sci-Fi and horror. Occasionally I read historical fiction and sometimes mystery. But my reviews will cover the favourite genres I mentioned.
I read only one book at the time. I rarely start a second book without finishing the one that I read, mainly because I like to complete what I've started (even though sometimes is difficult). I'm not a very fast reader, I have a job that occupies most of my time. But every time I get the chance I read.
I don't like e-books very much. I'm used to read books since childhood and so even it sounds conservative I love books. I love to turn the pages and I love to see the cover art whenever I open or close the book. And besides, at my work I spend 70% of my time in front of a computer.
My reviews will have a description of the plot, but without spoilers. Also they will follow some general lines. Mainly it will follow the action, the worldbuilding and the characters, but not necessarily. The reason for this is found in my interest in geography, history and mythology, and I like to see what the authors create in their books regarding world, history and religion. My reviews are made by a reader for readers, so they will not fit the professional definition. As I mentioned in my first post I wanted to be an editor, but I end up studying economics (don't ask me how because I really do not know). Also you have to excuse my english because I've learned it myself (through books, movies and computer games) and I didn't learned it in school, so it is possible to encounter some mistakes in my reviews. I hope you will excuse them.
Thank you for your visit and interest.
Monday, March 24, 2008
"The point of self-reflection is, foremost, to clarify and to find honesty. Self-reflection is the way to throw self-lies out and face the truth - however painful it might be to admit that you were wrong. We seek consistency in ourselves, and so when we are faced with inconsistency, we struggle to deny.
Denial has no place in self-reflection, and so it is incumbent upon a person to admit his errors, to embrace them and move along in a more positive direction.
We can fool ourselves for all sorts of reasons. Mostly for the sake of our ego, of course, but sometimes, I now understand, because we are afraid.
For sometimes we are afraid to hope, because hope breeds expectations, and expectation can lead to disappointment."
And this is one of the reasons why I love Drizzt Do'Urden. The way R.A. Salvatore writes Drizzt's thoughts is wonderful.