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What books are you currently reading?


Books

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Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

S.Baldrick wrote:
I just started "Kothar - Barbarian Swordsman" by Gardner F. Fox.

Nice! I just finished that. I was really pleased with some of the ideas in the book (the levitating, skinless wizard in the first story is a good example), but the whole thing felt pretty rushed and a bit hacky.

I do like the liches and Red Lori and Frostfire, though. Fox was ripping off Howard, pure and simple, but he managed a lot of it with panache.

What did you think of it?

--Erik

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Finished Leigh Brackett's "The Sword of Rhiannon" last week, and I'm pleased to report that it is the most "D&D" Brackett book I've read to date. That it is also an Edgar Rice Burroughs John Carter of Mars pastiche certainly helps, as I am utterly obsessed with the "sword and planet" genre at the moment.

Despite the book's obvious literary inspiration, Brackett has a way of making the sub-genre her own, and her maturity of a writer means the lyricism of the language is frankly much more entertaining than that found in all other examples of the genre save perhaps Robert E. Howard's "Almuric."

I'm about half-finished with Poul Anderson's "Virgin Planet," in which a 1950s-style space explorer lands on a planet inhabited only by women. It's not quite as sexist as you might imagine, and has some interesting ideas in it, but it's little more than a 3-star book, which makes it difficult to build the enthusiasm necessary to finish it.

I'm about to start "Unpublished Manuscript #1" (of 2) on my Planet Stories pile. I won't be able to talk about this one much, but I'm very excited to get into it.

--Erik


Eric, I am suprised that you even have any time to read, with all that is going on over at Paizo.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Tales Subscriber

Brian Lumley's Beneath the Moors and Darker Places and The Whisperer and Other Voices. Some of the tales are really very good.


R-type wrote:
Can anyone recommend any good science fiction books for me? ...

You'll like these: http://www.iainbanks.net/sf.htm

(start with Consider Phlebas, and then Player of Games)

Does anyone want to be a life? ;->

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Sharoth wrote:
Eric, I am suprised that you even have any time to read, with all that is going on over at Paizo.

A lot of what I've been reading plays right into Planet Stories, as I'm either re-reading books we've already signed or am "scouting" books we may decide to publish eventually.

Really, though, I tend to do a lot of my reading on airplanes, and I've been flying a lot for work and family stuff lately.

--Erik

Andoran

Erik Mona wrote:
S.Baldrick wrote:
I just started "Kothar - Barbarian Swordsman" by Gardner F. Fox.

Nice! I just finished that. I was really pleased with some of the ideas in the book (the levitating, skinless wizard in the first story is a good example), but the whole thing felt pretty rushed and a bit hacky.

I do like the liches and Red Lori and Frostfire, though. Fox was ripping off Howard, pure and simple, but he managed a lot of it with panache.

What did you think of it?

--Erik

I really enjoyed it. Basically, I thought that it was fun, unpretentious sword and sorcery and that was what I was in the mood for. It really hit the spot. I certainly agree with you about the book having some good ideas. If I had the time, I was thinking about writing a D&D module based on the extra-dimensional maze that was in the second story in the book.

I am actually planning on trying to pick up the other books in the series. I did have a copy of Kothar and the Wizard Slayer but it fell apart before I could finish it.


Though not necessarily fantasy-oriented, I've been mad hooked on Chuck Palahniuk's Choke. Very grim and comical, a la Fight Club, but not for younger audiences.

But, as far as sci-fi goes, it's always been Philip K. Dick; and fantasy, Michael Moorcock. (Boy...both those guys must've been put through hell in junior high.)

Andoran

Currently entrenched in the Dark Paladin series by Joh Ringo, which lacks any hint of D&D paladins... Ex-navy seal, come mercenary... completely over the top fun reading

Also in the middle of the Warhammer 40k Horus Heresy Series... impressive collection

Hmm, and trying to find time to reread David Weber's Oath of Swords series...

And there is more... I am sure there is...

Osirion

Just finished R.A. Salvatore's "Promise of the Witch-King," and Thomas M. Reids "The Gossamer Plain." The books are extensions to the WotSQ series. Both were pretty good.

This weekend-hopefully-I'll be starting "Forbidden Planets," by numerous authors and "The Space Wolf Omnibus," by William King.

Unfortunately, they will be slow reads due to the fact that my current class is requiring me to read "Qualified Pension and Profit-Sharing Plans, by Pamela D. Perdue. It doesnt leave time for much else. );

Thoth-Amon


HP Lovecraft - Tales. Specifically "Herbert West - Reanimator" right now.

Paizo Employee Sales Imp

Hierophantasm wrote:
Though not necessarily fantasy-oriented, I've been mad hooked on Chuck Palahniuk's Choke. Very grim and comical, a la Fight Club, but not for younger audiences.

I'm a big fan of Palaniuk's writing. I've read nearly all of his stuff and Choke is one of my particular favorites. I have yet to read Rant, but I've heard it is very good.

You might find this as exciting as I do.

Furthermore, if you enjoy Chuck's work you should also check out Craig Clevenger, specifically his book The Contortionist's Handbook (the follow-up, Dermaphoria, is also very good).

I am currently re-reading one of the scariest books ever written, IMHO, Hot Zone. This book will turn your bowels to water. Because it's nonfiction.


Thoth-Amon the Mindflayerian wrote:

Unfortunately, they will be slow reads due to the fact that my current class is requiring me to read "Qualified Pension and Profit-Sharing Plans, by Pamela D. Perdue.

Thoth-Amon

LOL. That's got to be the worst titled book on this board. I think I would give up reading if I was forced to plow through that one. Good luck there, Thoth; you deserve a medal.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Hierophantasm wrote:


But, as far as sci-fi goes, it's always been Philip K. Dick; and fantasy, Michael Moorcock. (Boy...both those guys must've been put through hell in junior high.)

Have you read Moorcock's "Kane of Old Mars" sequence? We're publishing the first one, "City of the Beast" (nee "Warriors of Mars") in September. It's fun adventure in the Edgar Rice Burroughs John Carter of Mars tradition.

--Erik


Erik Mona wrote:

Have you read Moorcock's "Kane of Old Mars" sequence? We're publishing the first one, "City of the Beast" (nee "Warriors of Mars") in September. It's fun adventure in the Edgar Rice Burroughs John Carter of Mars tradition.

--Erik

Great! The Von Bek series of his Eternal Champion Omnibus Collection was my favorite, but you've peaked my interest with that. Is it, by chance, going to be published as a part of Planet Stories?

EDIT: Whoops! Just looked for myself. It is. Hooray! Have to check out some of the other titles, as well. A really cool idea, BTW.


Polished of Byzantium by Steven Lawhead. For a 900 page epic that covers the journey from Ireland to the Middle East, it was pure page turning delight. Viking plunders, sacred objects, monks, court intrigue in a golden city with evil nobles and assassins, faith, desert adventure, affairs with royal women, ship boardings with pirates and a stint in a silver mine with sadistic guards, It certainly covers a lot of territory. Just found out; it's main character, Saint Aidan was real. Could make for a great D&D conversion.

And now for something a little less demanding. WOTC book "Halls of Stormweather".

Andoran

Hannibal and Red Dragon, both by Thomas Harris.


Just finished up "The Lair of Bones" by David Farland and picked up "Jefferson and Monticello" by Jack McLaughlin. Also in the midst of "Gates of Dawn" by Robert Newcomb.

>>Edit: LOL> Just realized that I put down "Lair of Bones" in a previous post in Oct. 2006--No, it didn't take me that long. I started it and just couldn't get into it. Put it down for eight months, then plowed through it in 2 days.<<


Reading "Gates of Fire" by Steven Pressfield. Heard the audio book about a year ago, but since the release of 300, thought I would buy the book and read it. Man, it just don't let up. Also, reading the Last Kingdom by Bernard Cornwell. Not bad, but pales in comparison to GOF so far.

Andoran RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

I've taken a short hiatus from sci-fi/fantasy and right now I'm reading the Sleeping Doll Jeffrey Deaver's newest suspense novel.


I'm reading Monkey by Wu Ch'Êng-Ên translated by Arthur Waley. I'm also running a Kitsunemori campaign right now, so I'm hoping for some Asian mythology inspiration.

Cheliax

Montreal seems to be in a Robert E Howard's Conan drought at the moment. So I'm reading Heretics of Dune.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

The Hunter in the Dark, a Lovecraft anthology. Reading The Call of Cthulhu at the moment. Good stuff, haven't read any Lovecraft for a long time, although I have come across some of these stories before.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

I just finished reading an excellent cyberpunk noir.
Altered Carbon by Richard Morgan.
Go to Altered Carbon.

Anyone who has not read Neal Stephenson and loves intricate settings should read his utterly brilliant trilogy "The Baroque Cycle"about the beginnings of the market economy and the clash between alchemy and science. It has the best broadswords and muskets action I can recall. It also is a meditation on the 1800s while simultaneously being a ripping good yarn. I find Stephenson thinks in similar patterns to mine.
Go to The Baroque Cycle.

Just re-read the Harry Potter books to prepare for the last book, then thought "what the hell" and re-read A Song of Ice and Fire.

Non-fiction, I am working slowly through a history of human ideas by Peter Watson. The book is titled "Ideas, a History of Thought and Invention from Fire to Freud." I am up to the chapter on Hindu numerals, sanskrit and the Indian enlightenment. I am enjoying this even more than his other work on C20th thought; "The Modern Mind"
Go to Ideas.

I am also reading through a bittorrent download of Grant Morrisson's run on New X-men. The first intelligent X-Men comics in an age, along with Muties and X-force, after I needed more of the style of his excellent Invisibles. Go to Invisibles


I'm re-reading the "Song of Ice & Fire" series by George RR Martin for the dozenth time. It seems no matter how many times I revisit this four-book (and counting) series, I manage to get something new out of it.

I'm eagerly waiting for the final instalment of the Harry Potter series next month and hope JK Rowling is able to deliver an adequate payoff at the end. I know they are intended for children but I love them all the same.

At some point before I die, I might finally give Robert Jordan another chance. the "Wheel of Time" series showed a lot of promise in the beginning, assuming one can overlook the ridiculously overwritten prose of that series' first book! I lost my taste for Jordan around the seventh volume, the lack of story advancement and terrible character devolopment eventually wore me down. Am I alone in wondering if Mr. Jordan has ever *MET* a real woman in his life!?


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

I'm gonna go there and bring up some comic books...

Dark Horse's Conan is one of the best titles on racks these days. Any D&D lover should check it out. They've already published quite a few of the trade paperbacks and they're up to issue 41 of the ongoing. If you're missing out on this, run don't walk to your local comic book store.

DC Comics is releasing a collected volume of the four-part Elric: The Making of a Sorcerer, available July 4. It's a pretty rad original Elric story by Moorcock himself, illustrated by Walt Simonson. Choice.

And last, but certainly not least, Dark Horse recently released a collected edition of their Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser. Adapted by Howard Chaykin and illustrated by Mike Mignola, this is spot on.

Osirion

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Just started the Erevis Cale Trilogy. Pretty good. Then I'll start on book one of the Twilight War, hopefully finishing it in time for Book 2 to come out.


Destro Fett wrote:
And last, but certainly not least, Dark Horse recently released a collected edition of their Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser. Adapted by Howard Chaykin and illustrated by Mike Mignola, this is spot on.

You won't be disappointed with this one. Pre-Hellboy Mignola at his finest. How did you like the Elric book? I haven't been making regular comic store trips, so I haven't seen it.

I'm going to start reading The Road by Cormac McCarthy. A friend loaned it to me and said it was pretty great; a father and son's journey through post-apocalyptic America, just hoping to reach the coast, even though they don't know what awaits them there. We joked about China Mieville's novels being the Oprah's Book Club selection at Paizo, but this was actually in Oprah's Book Club. And apparently, it's pretty gruesome in parts.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
James Keegan wrote:
How did you like the Elric book? I haven't been making regular comic store trips, so I haven't seen it.

The art is classic and the writing is straight from the source - this is canon. I enjoyed it a lot. The original production schedule suffered from some delays on books 3 and 4, so it's a much better experience reading the trade paperback in my opinion. If you like Elric, you'll like this book. It lives in the tradition of the old P. Craig Russell adaptations, but with a Walt Simonson aesthetic.


Kensanata wrote:
I'm reading Monkey by Wu Ch'Êng-Ên translated by Arthur Waley. I'm also running a Kitsunemori campaign right now, so I'm hoping for some Asian mythology inspiration.

Cool. I studied Asian Literature during my undergrad degree and loved that book. Another favorite of mine was 3 Kingdoms which doesn't have much for you in terms of mythology, but there's a lot on the ethics of knights and warfare that is really great background for Asian campaigns.

It used to be a real nuisance to find a copy in English, but that was a long time ago.


Currently on deck:

David Sedaris Naked
China Mieville Un Lun Dun
Terry Pratchett A Hat Full of Sky
Christopher Moore You Suck
Neil Gaiman Anansi Boys
Hideyuki Kikuchi Vampire Hunter D


Martha Wells, "Death of the Necromancer". City adventure an 1800's magic version of Wienna:)


The Road was really good. I read it all in one day, probably because there aren't any chapters; just one continuous narrative. Extremely intense; definitely not a beach book.

Qadira RPG Superstar 2010 Top 32

The new Alastair Reynolds, "The Prefect". Wonderful hard sci-fi.
As usual he's slipped a hundred cool ideas into the window dressing in the first ten pages. For example, security dyslexia as a means of controlling access to info of a particular security clearance. If you haven't had the right drug, you can't read the reports. The man's a genius!


I just finished my second reread of Jonathon Strange & Mr Norrell. Now I'm two stories into The Ladies of Grace Adieu. Both by Susanna Clarke. How many others have read these? Some of my friends who I assumed would like these were put off by the presentation.

Clarke is not the most accessible writer perhaps, but these are truly fascinating modern fairy tales. Victorian sorcery and politics.

Cheers
Ian


Just finished Reapers Gale by Stephen Erickson..won't be out in the states for another year but it is a treat..wraps up a lot of loose ends from the previous 6 bookss..

"Only" 3 more books to be written in the series...

Andoran

'Wizard's First Rule' by Terry Goodkind
'Stranger in a Strange Land' by Robert Heinlein


The Children of Hurin by J.R.R Tolkien, edited by Christpher Tolkien. Its pretty good so far.


The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian, by Robert E. Howard.

Andoran

The Eldritch Mr. Shiny wrote:

'Wizard's First Rule' by Terry Goodkind

'Stranger in a Strange Land' by Robert Heinlein

I grok to Heinlen. Check out Friday, if you can find a copy...


Harry Potter: Order of the Phoenix
Civilization: Second Contact


"A Bomb Built in Hell," by Andrew Vachss. One that Paizo will never publish, but fascinating reading nontheless.


Just finished Time is the Simplest Thing, by Clifford Simak. Re-reading Watchmen, in hopes that they decide NOT to make a film of it after all.


Just finished "The Golden Compass" by Philip Pullman, first in His Dark Materials series. Wow! A lot of the themes in this supposed children's book are complex -- and disturbing -- all of which makes this a mature work worth your time. Plus, it has the trappings of steampunk and reworks some familiar fantasy tropes. I highly recommend it.


Joe Abercrombie Book One: The Blade Itself, a nice bit of woolen string

Osirion

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Cards, Maps Subscriber

Currently Reading Children of Dune.

I am rereading the series before reading the most recent book - The Hunters of Dune.

I have enjoyed the newer Dune books.

Osirion

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Shem wrote:

Currently Reading Children of Dune.

I am rereading the series before reading the most recent book - The Hunters of Dune.

I have enjoyed the newer Dune books.

Same here about the newer Dune books. They may not be as good as Frank Herbert's original stuff, but they are entertaining.

Osirion

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Jit wrote:
Joe Abercrombie Book One: The Blade Itself, a nice bit of woolen string

Abercrombie?!? Boy, that name sure does sound familiar.....


Aberzombie wrote:
Jit wrote:
Joe Abercrombie Book One: The Blade Itself, a nice bit of woolen string
Abercrombie?!? Boy, that name sure does sound familiar.....

Maybe a little trip over the pond is in order?

http://www.orionbooks.co.uk/13093-0/author-Joe-Abercrombie.htm

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