Go mbeannai Dia duit.

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Quaker by conviction, mother by default, Celticst through love, Christ follower because I once was lost but now am found...

Sunday, April 1, 2012

What I Found.

"Some people will believe anything if you whisper it to them "~ Miguel Unamuno

I am a fantasy reader.  I always have been.  Why have the real when you can have the speculative, right?  So one of the big beefs of my life is the dearth of really excellent fantasy writers.  Even that icon of fantasy writing, Tolkien, annoys the living daylights out of me.  The man needed an editor who wasn't afraid to tell him when he was being downright boring!  Indeed the fantasy market is so flooded with Tolkien wannabes I was limiting my craving for speculative fiction to archaeology texts.  Too sad making I know.

Then last week, Star started pulling books of the library shelves for me telling me I might like this that or the other.  She did really well by me.  I have an unread Philipa Gregory that I'm just starting but the surprise package was The Two Pearls of Wisdom by Alison Goodman.

I wasn't real keen.  I'm not big on Japanese or Chinese mythology.  I'm not big on Japanese or Chinese history.  As races I find them incredibly cuel ~  worse for being intelligently cruel!  And people wonder why The Hunger Games doesn't disturb me!  Hasn't got a patch on reality. I digress.

I borrowed it anyway because it was a pretty desparate week & we were travelling even more than usual & I'm so pleased I did because this is one absolutely brilliant book.  If you are at all squeamish, forget it!  Don't even try.  If you are a little hardier this is a book with a great deal to offer.

Loosely based on Japanese & Chinese mythology [a little more loaded towards the Chinese I think] this is wonderfully original & beautifully concieved fantasy.  It is complex & rich  with a solid base in reality.  Eona, a crippled girl, poses as a boy to attempt to bond with one of the 12 celestial dragons & obtain both riches & power for herself & her master.  Discovery is certain slow & cruel death.  The plot is driven by court intrigues & power struggles & I did something I almost never do with any book; I read it straight through from cover to cover.  It is an absolute page turner!

I can't wait to read The Necklace of the Gods ~ the second part of the duology.


Ruby said...

Oh, Ganeida, I am squeamish so probably not for me. Which is actually a good thing at this stage as though I am feeling much better I am still not reading anything of length :-(
My girls (both in their 20s) saw the Hunger Games on the weekend. they had not read or seen much hype and didn't mind it. Didn't find it violent but the themes a little disturbing. They were actually quite unreactionary to it, which I found interesting. Perhaps they are mulling it over? Perhaps they are just at that stage of life where they need to zone out during a movie and not let it affect them.

Ganeida said...

Oh Ruby, if I hadn't seen Christians getting hot under the collar about THG I probably wouldn't have commented on it at all but another case, sadly, of many commenting negatively on a work they haven't seen & just repeating bad press. I suspect the books will be a lot worse but until I have actually finished reading them I can't comment. I know exactly why your girls didn't react. In all honestly everyday t.v is much, much worse ~ but you probably need to stay away from this book. lol It is exciting but quite nasty in a couple of spots.

Finding Joy said...

I watched the review of THG by David and Margaret (ABC Movie Show) - not everyone likes these two, but both agree that the movie wasn't as violent as the book (but felt the blurring was poorly done), however they both said it was not a great film at all (sorry) and David particularly disliked the handheld camera work (makes me motion sick quite badly, so even if I did want to watch it I couldn't). David found the story line ill suited for children and teenagers and gave this 1.5 stars and I think Margaret gave it 2.5

Sorry - I don't like fantasy and have no desire to read it - so this won't be on my reading list. I much prefer mystery novels. We all have different taste when it comes to books and that is fine :)

Julie B. said...

As a rule I don't enjoy fantasy a lot, but there are a few exceptions I've loved, and Tolkien is one. I smiled at your thoughts that he was sometimes boring - I can only comment on The Lord of the Rings, but I found every page wonderful, and even had to pause now and then to take in some of what he wrote, because I was so moved by it. :) I have no doubt that if I read it again today I could have a different reaction. And the photo of you and Star - both of you are so pretty! Those eyes of yours are so startlingly turquoise and lovely, Ganeida.

Ganeida said...

lol Jo. Horses for courses. Very few adults like fantasy so you're in good company.

As for David & Margaret ~ I rarely agree with thier assessments. Theirs is an academic accounting & people ignore them anyway. I find their comments interesting but don't take them overly seriously. They're paid to do a particular job in an entertaining way & I think they're prettty good at that.

Julie! Ah, yes. I do recall. We've had this conversation before. I don't think this one would be much to your taste but Jeanne at A Peaceful Day *might* enjoy it ~ only I don't think she's much into fantasy.

They eyes! The eyes. I always think mine have sunk so deep I look like a skull. They used to be more like Star's ~ in shape if not colour! lol

seekingmyLord said...

I like fantasy but I have a stack of books still to be read and reviewed, so I will keep this one in mind for later, perhaps.