snugglekitty: (hermione)
[personal profile] snugglekitty
This week's new fantasy by up-and-coming authors...

I read Urban Shaman by CE Murphy last week. It was her first book, and very well-reviewed. I thought it was great. Finally, someone else who gets it! The success of Anita Blake comes not simply from the vampires and sexiness, but from the fact that we have dark fantasy with a strong female protagonist. The myths Murphy used were pretty standard and archetypal, but it wasn't done in a cliched way. I especially loved the characters and the way the protagonist sees the world. She has a novella with the same character in Lackey's new book Winter Heart, which I'm planning to check out. Four stars.

I finished Eldest by Christopher Paolini earlier today. I was surprised by how much I liked it. Eragon was fairly derivative, IMO, but the sequel was very original. There were some plot twists that I didn't expect, and some of the world-building stuff was interesting. Like, "Elves don't have a religion." That was unusual. The plot line involving Eragon's brother and the other inhabitants of his home village I enjoyed even more than the central plotline. I found Roran to be a very sympathetic character, and the exploration of the idea, "What happens to the folks you leave behind while you go off adventuring?" was both well-done and original. I will be looking forward to the next book in the series - it feels like it's going to be wrapped up in three volumes, but you never know. Four stars.
How much I enjoyed these books also reminded me that I have a legitimate need to read fiction. So I ordered a bunch more fiction from the library. I will also take suggestions for more if anyone has them.

Next up: Flights, which is a new anthology that looks totally fascinating. I'm also reading some books for my job on infants and postpartum mother care.
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August 2011

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