Ships in Books that I like – A late Valentine’s day post

Valentine’s day has come and gone, which means I get to bandwagon on the whole “lets write about love” But also like…. I’ve read a total of like one romance book that I’ve liked since last year, so I’m just going to go through and list some of my favorite romantic that I’ve read in books (if we include comics we’d be here….. all day) . Are all of these canon? Hell no. What do you expect from a bi who mostly reads genre fiction home to the straights. But I’m still standing by these. Fight me.

This is also a list to maybe give people like… an idea of what I like in romance? so that I can direct them to some of these and get some actual good romance recs.

Also these could have…. endgame spoilers I guess? If you see the name of a book you want to read just like… skim over it I guess. I’m not going to tag the books because this list is long because I read a lot and have a lot of feelings.

  • Locke Lamora and Jean Tannen
    • From: The Lies of Locke Lamora

    • State of Ship: Not Canon
    • I’m sorry y’all like I totally get the friend angle but also Locke and Jean really care for each other and look after one another and I’d absolutely DIE if they smooched. Even if that means Jean can’t be my boyfriend. Locke u hurt him and u SUFFER YOU HERE ME!!!!!
  • Henry “Monty” Montague and Percy Newton
    • From: The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue

    • State of Ship: Canon
    • THIS IS SO SWEET AND PURE AND ROMANTIC Y’ALL. This is one of the first historical romances that I actually felt like PHYSICAL PAIN over. I love that friends to lover trope love that pining it’s all SO GOOD
  • Ahmad and Chava
    • From: The Golem and the Jinni
    • State of Ship: Canon????
    • Y’all this ship is just SUFFERING. Another friends to lovers ship because im nothing if not predictable. but it involves supernatural beings so like add another 100 points to ‘things that are extremely Zen’s shit’

Continue reading “Ships in Books that I like – A late Valentine’s day post”

Advertisements

Reading Wrap up, 2019 – Books #15 – 20

Another 5 books down! This span of books goes from Feb 1st to Feb 12th and contains 3 physical books and 2 audiobooks. It’s a bit more of some genre jumping too – One nonfiction, two Contemporary YA, and Two Fantasy. The ratings vary pretty wildly in this batch too – though now that I’m looking at which ones I liked more than the others, I’m not as surprised. Let’s get into it.

  • Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt

    • Rating: 2.75/5
    • Content Warning for: Racism, Transphobia, Homophobia, (including heavy use of slurs), Assault and Murder.
    • Thoughts: Man I have some….. complicated feelings about this one if you can believe it from my iffy rating.
    • Berendt does an absolute stellar job painting Savannah and all its idiosyncrasies and colorful characters. His prose just absolutely transports  you there. You can hear the southern twang of the conversations, sell the humid air and taste the sweet tea on your lips – its honestly incredible how evocative the scenes he creates are. His background in journalism shines in his prose – the book tends to mainly feel like a long-form article in the paper in pacing. It compels you to read until the end of the chapter easily.
    • And I think the thing is, the chapters are compelling, but the general story isn’t. As a book sold on being about “”true-crime””, it doesn’t start up until the later half of the book, and it just started dragging. While the beginning of the book is purely setup and flavor, it ends up being more successful because it feels relatively aimless in comparison to the latter half in which Berendt feels compelled to go into a lot of just…. uninteresting details.
    • It was also really concerting for me just how much Berendt was willing to forgive of a lot of the “”characters”” that he met. Like man I don’t care if this book was written in the fucking 80s or 90s and takes place in the 70s, the amount of racism and elitism displayed in this is not only disgusting, but barely ever remarked upon. Which if Berendt didn’t interject at all, I’d set down to him wanting to be impartial. But the fact of the matter is, it feels like he goes out of his way to justify the shitty history and policies of Savannah – stuff like “it wasn’t as bad because of _______” or “compared to this town it’s better” which came off just super defensive and gross.
    • Like man I get it, your white self feels hunky dory here, but reading about people saying that they’d kill themselves if a black family moved next door, or noted that interracial couples don’t exist in that town because they’d get harassed or assaulted and your feebly bleating “but it could be worse!!!” Man fuck you. Don’t give me that patronizing shit. Just say you don’t actually care and go. He does this fairly rarely, but it really soured my impression of the novel in general – instead of an honest portrayal of Savannah and its inhabitants, its makes it all feel like the man’s got some heavily tinted rose-colored glasses on.
    • This book isn’t a total waste of time, but it definitely feels like the book should have been shorter and leaned into the author’s strengths. If you’re looking for a rather atmospheric read I’d give this a try. But it’s definitely not what I’d call Good True Crime.
    • Though full stop you should just read the chapters about The Lady Chablis and then peace out there. It never gets better than that.

 

  • Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour

    • Rating: 3.5/5
    • Content Warning for: Discussions of Drug Abuse, Death, Homophobia.
    • Thoughts: I read We Are Okay last year and really really liked it, so of course when my library got the audiobook of one of her other books, I put myself on the waitlist. And for the most part, I really liked this book!
    • I don’t know if I talked about this last time, but LaCour is really fantastic at setting. We Are Okay really got the Bay Area and Upstate New York really well, this book really gets Los Angeles (Though let me amend that to White People Los Angeles. More on that a bit later). You really feel like you are there, seeing the palm trees sway in the warm breeze. And LaCour has such a love for the movies and what it takes to make a movie – reading about set design and subplots centered around the movies were absolutely fascinating.
    • There is a lot of really interesting conjecture about breaking up and romance in here that was really sweet (Like everything LaCour writes, this is a lesbian romance and it is CUTE AS HECK!!!) as well as just like…. fucked up family shit lol. There’s a couple of scenes at the end that are just really going to tear your heart out – a lot about family and estrangement and homophobia that is absolutely ROUGH listening if you’ve gone through that. These issues, the book handles in a really interesting and altogether moving way.
    • Though I gotta say, I wasn’t in love with how this book was paced. A little bit over halfway through the book, I got the sneaking suspicion that there’s not nearly enough pages to wrap up the storylines that it has going in a satisfying way. And it just…. it weirdly drags in some places because the book gets so wrapped up in the main characters head. Which most of the time works. I could’ve done with like. Another chapter and an epilogue and then I would have been good.
    • I also just… this book does not feel grounded in reality. The main characters are all graduating from high school, and while half of the time they act like it, the other feels like the author wanted to write a book about character WAY older than she introduced – especially in their own skill level and responsibilities. There are a lot of just really convenient moments narratively too – that instead of doing something interesting, the book goes “this is easy, so let’s do that”. Like this BOOK feels like the set of a lifetime movie half of the time. Which again, noting how intense this book gets, was a weird tonal whiplash.
    • And yo LaCour you really miss the beat on a couple of issues. The main character, as a HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT says “This is why I don’t date High School girls” and I was just??????? You ARE in High School????? What age range ARE you dating in then?????? And don’t get me started on how the best friends relationship resolves. Like yo there are actual issues with minors/age gaps and LaCour is like AIN’T NO THING. Me in the background: Nooooooooooooooooo
    • There is also a character that borderline feels like they exist to school the main character on their privilege and it is Not Well Written and comes off heavy-handed and kinda sucks because it feels like the one notable Brown character mainly exists to further these white women’s stories, which I’m not about. I mean, LaCour does go into his dreams and wants but all together it feels a bit manipulative. Like the author’s looking for some sweet Woke Points or whatever. Like I get why people don’t like We Are Okay, but I feel like it had something to talk about and just did it.This book gets a lot more praise and it’s just like…. y’all need to like. Think for three minutes or something.
    • I digress – I do still really enjoy this book and audiobook – it’s a sweet lesbian romance story that has a lot of great atmosphere and good discussions. But also just…. was not my personal favorite. Fun read, but definitely could use some work.

Continue reading “Reading Wrap up, 2019 – Books #15 – 20”

Reading Wrap up, 2019 – Books #11 – 15

I pretty much blasted through the majority of these books while I was on vacation, meaning you’re getting an update a lot sooner than I even expected! These five books span from Jan 22 – 31st and lean pretty heavily into genre fiction – a bunch of syfy/fantasy and horror with a dusting of historical fiction at the end. It’s also comes out to 3 adult books and 2 YA/MG books – go figure.

 

  • Provenance by Ann Leckie

    • Rating: 3.75/5
    • Thoughts: I absolutely loved Leckie’s first book, Ancillary Justice when I read it back in like 2015. I’ve been meaning to pick up the rest of the series so instead I… picked up her standalone that takes place after the entire series is over (before you ask, you probably want to read the rest of the series before you read this novel. Or at least read the first, because 1) there’s a lot of context you’re going to miss otherwise and 2) there are some spoilers for the series in this. Like not big ones, but definitely spoilers)
    • I did end up having a ton of fun with this novel though! Once you get out of a bit of a slow beginning, the novel really takes off. Though I gotta say the reason why the novel is slow at the beginning is because Leckie feels like they’ve got to explain just a ton of shit to the reader instead of taking their time to spread that world building out, which was a bit of a disappointment.
    • The plot in this once you get out of the slump in the beginning is a lot of fun too. It’s a really fun political scifi novel that delves into a lot of interesting ideas and concepts without feeling bogged down in them. Though it does still feel like Scifi With a Purpose – like with the Imperial Radch series, Leckie has some really interesting things to say about society and gender, and the complexity of familial relationships and loyalty. Just like her first series, it’s still really impressive how well Leckie is able to weave a lot of these themes into her world without it feeling overbearing.
    • We’re introduced to a couple alien races/planets that are just hellaaaaa interesting as well, and it’s really cool to see the cultural elements play off of each other and in the story.
    • Though this book definitely falls short of what I love about Ancillary Justice because of the characters. I’ll go into some other disappointing characters later in this wrap up, but this novel’s were…. fine? For the most part, I didn’t find myself really connecting with any of the characters. Sure, they were a lot of fun to watch the story play out, but their plights and emotional core just was not in it the same way it was with her original novel. And this story, maybe even more so than Imperial Radch, feels really emotionally driven.
    • Though it has a valiant effort by the end to turn on the Feels, ultimately I ended up just a bit ambivalent (though there is a sweet f/f relationship that I DIE over thank u Ann Leckie for the space gays). I liked the characters, but for the most part they ended up feeling a bit like servants to a really good plot more than characters I grew to love.
    • If you’re looking for some solid fun scifi and you’ve read the rest of the Imperial Radch series, I’d give this a look. It’s still a good balance of contemplative and engaging, even if it is lacking the strong character draw of the Imperial Radch series.
  • White Tears by Hari Kunzru
    • Rating: 2.25/5
    • Thoughts: oooookay this is going to be a…. complicated book to write about, I can tell you that right now.
    • This book has a lot to say about anti-blackness and the cultural appropriation performed by the white masses on pretty much…. all of black culture. And I think it’s about…. 30 percent successful. I think Kunzru gets what he’s trying to do, which is more than I can say about a lot of people who attempt to write about it, especially from the perspective of an outsider.
    • But the thing is…. Kunzru is an outsider, but is trying to write this novel like he isn’t. And like? The emotion just doesn’t ring quite right – it rings a bit like someone who’s parroting what they’ve been told instead of genuine anger. I’m not saying “you can’t be successful writing about issues like anti-blackness if you’re not black”, but man if you’re going to try and be “”authentic”” about it like…. be authentic dude. The author goes through the lengths of describing the research trip he went on to write the book and kind of ends it with “this is what I learned on the trip and wrote into a book” and it’s almost like mate i think you need to go back on that trip because I do not think this book is IT.
    • Though honestly, the authenticity isn’t the biggest problem this book has, though one that makes a lot of its other problems hard to stomach. The pacing is just completely out of whack – The book lulls a ton at the beginning and middle of the novel, which I only powered through because it was so dang short. And Kunzru spends just wayyyy too much time in his horror parable trying to make you feel sympathy for the main characters. Which let me just end that train of thought with no, you didn’t do that great my man. They’re still reprehensible white dudes throughout the entire novel – stop trying to make me care. It’s really really really not going to work.
    • This book also kind of promised it was going to be a ghost story??? And like… it is, but it’s not very good at being a ghost story. It’s not really…. scary? Or emotional enough to be effective? This book just did not do it for me in the ways that I’d hoped the premise would. In the end, it was barely interesting, and just thoughtful enough that I do feel like there is some merit to the whole exercise. But not enough for me to give this a ringing endorsement.
    • I can guarantee you will read better fiction books on cultural appropriation and anti-blackness than this book. But if the premise sounds like it may be interesting, I won’t dissuade you from checking it out.

Continue reading “Reading Wrap up, 2019 – Books #11 – 15”

Comics/Graphic Novels I read in January 2019 – Reading Wrap Up

First Comic/Graphic Novel  wrap up of the year! It’s a bit shorter than usual since I was on vacation/away from my graphic novel collection, but I still picked up around four! As usual, it’s a pretty eclectic mix of fantasy / historical fiction / romance / mystery.

  • The Black Bull of Norroway, Written by Cat Seaton & Illustrated by Kit Seaton

    • Rating: 4.25/5
    • Thoughts: This was my first read of the year actually! I picked it up at the comic store when I was home for the holidays because nothing is more exciting to me than fantasy graphic novels and this really hit the spot for me, lol.
    • The art in this is just something else y’all. I really hope Kit Seaton picks up work other than this book, because her sequential art for a fantasy series is pretty damn incredible. Her character design and expressions are just absolutely phenomenal in this. AND THOSE BACKGROUNDS!!!! I am in total awe of these backgrounds!!!!!
    • I really like the story to this too! The main characters are a lot of fun to follow and have a lot of chemistry. And it’s just really emotional – everything feels just so much bigger because of that. Like it really sells the importance of the journey that the main characters are going on and the relationships that are shown in the comic.
    • This was a really fun read to start the year with! I know it’s a bit of a short, but honestly it’s a pretty straightforward story that’s told pretty dang well.  I’d absolutely recommend this retelling if that’s stuff you’re into.
  • Saints by Gene Luen Yang
    • Rating: 3.75/5
    • Content Warning for: Death, Drug Addiction, Murder.
    • Thoughts: i really liked this one! Though unfortunately, I didn’t like Saints as much as I did the previous book in this series, Boxers
    • While it was interesting to see the Christian side of the Boxer rebellion, and following the choices in which the main character makes in becoming Christian, I think it again falls a little too much into the weird hokey-ness of Yang’s other work. Though granted it wasn’t nearly as distracted as it was in Boxers, but it was definitely a bit odd for my taste. The main character was definitely more interesting to me than the main character of the other one, but that might be because her flaws don’t feel quite as convenient and cartoonishly evil at the end.
    • While I liked the ending of this a lot more too, in the end, I think this books main weakness is it’s “quirky-ness” and the fact that it feels really short. As a story, it just felt like it maybe just wasn’t all there.
    • I also personally felt like Boxers worked much better on informing/teaching the reader about the Boxer Rebellion, this book felt a bit too much like “ok we showed you one side HERE’S THE OTHER” without actually going into a lot of new information.
    • I still think the collection is pretty good – I’d give both of these books a read, especially if you want to learn more about the Boxer rebellion, but I might try out some of Yang’s other work to see if you mesh with it. I could definitely see the magical realism elements to this feeling super distracting.

Continue reading “Comics/Graphic Novels I read in January 2019 – Reading Wrap Up”

Reading Wrap up, 2019 – Books #6 – 10

And another five bite the dust! I’ve been on a roll with reading lately. Though this batch wasn’t quite as strong as the first five of the year, there were a couple of interesting reads. I pretty much just went super hard into historical fiction for some reason lol.

The reading in this block spans from January 9th to around January 22nd – the end of the period being my plane ride over to my vacation! Yes, I  am blogging from vacation, but I wanted to get this out before I forgot everything.

This collection is another mixed bag, with some pretty good reads and some meh reads and probably my first DNF since like…. 2015. If you learn anything about me, you’ll learn how much I hate DNFing a book. Well this one was a pretty special case.

  • Abhorsen by Garth NixRating: 4.5/5
    • Content Warning for: Death and fantasy violence Nothing super explicit in this book though
    • Thoughts:  YOOOOOOOO so I definitely wrote a general thoughts post about the Old Kingdom trilogy a couple weeks ago now and my feelings about this book haven’t changed. An absolute great finale to this series if I say so myself.
    • You know how I complained about Sam in the last book? Take that out completely in this book – he’s a true bro, a new half way decent dude in the entirety of this series. Incredible, amazing.
    • The characters and the story and the world building all just continue to be excellent in this novel, maybe even more so that Lirael. Though if you twisted my arm and asked me to choose which one I liked more, it’s probably going to be Lirael – The pacing in this is really intense – it was honestly a bit exhausting at some point it was just SO ON all the damn time.
    • But while Lirael’s character really shines in this, a lot of the side characters your introduced to REALLY hit their stride in this book. It is just a joy to see them interact and watch them try and save the world and have to play with the twisted weird magic rules the whole thing sets up.
    • I unapologetically love the Old Kingdom series at this point. Totally get why it’s not for some people – it’s still a little out there, but I absolutely recommend it if you’re looking to branch out from stereotypical YA fantasy.
  • Everfair by Nisi Shawl
    • Rating: 3/5
    • Content Warning for: Body Horror, Discussions of genocide, murder and racism. It’s alternate history that takes place in King Leopold’s reign of the Congo Free State aka the WORST FUCKING THING JESUS CHRIST 
    • Thoughts: I really wanted to like this book. As a number one proponent of diverse steampunk that challenges the genre’s colonialist ideas,  I was really excited to pick this up, especially since I hadn’t read any steampunk that takes place on the Continent of Africa AND it was supposedly gay.
    • And in the end, I think this story was just a bit too ambitious for Shawl. While I felt myself become drawn to some characters in the novel, the way that she wrote it made me feel a bit alienated from the majority of them. This book takes place over such a long span of time and jumps perspectives so much, that not only was it hard to keep track of what was happening, it was just really difficult to get engaged. Which again, when I was given enough time with her characters, I did start to connect with them! There are a lot of really good character and relationship moments that I feel like get drowned out
    • Shawl’s writing style and format just does her absolutely no favors on this one. It’s a bit dry at times, and just can’t keep its pacing straight. The first half of this novel was kind of hard to get through because the narrative just couldn’t sit still. It felt like the author just had too much to say and just not enough book.
    • I also see what Shawl was going for in this critique, but I think it wasn’t nearly as potent as I hoped. I fee like it’s a bit lukewarm in its critique of colonialism – considering there are points in this novel where I’m supposed to feel bad for white people in the post-colonialist novel where. Which, while it totally makes sense in the narrative of the novel, feels a bit uncomfortable with the real world backdrop of today. AND the fact that these white people still kind of… colonized the place even if they were “benevolent” about it. Like it was just…. a tepid take in my opinion.
    • Also I think this one is a just more of a pet peeve, but there is one situation with a multiracial couple involving a white person, in which the white person says a Racist Thing, and their nonwhite partner is uncomfortable and distances themselves and this person spends. YEARS AND YEARS AND YEARS being like “what did I do wrong????? *continues to say racist shit*” until another nonwhite person is like “yo u racist”. And suddenly this white person goes crying back for forgiveness AND GETTING SAID FORGIVENESS FROM THEIR LOVER without really feeling like they…. actually fucking learned anything or are willing to change their behavior. Which considering there are SEVERAL OTHER multiracial relationships that aren’t this clumsy it was just reaaalllllly bizarre.
    • Shawl writes a lot more short stories than full length novels, and you can definitely see how its written that she’s done a lot more short fiction. I think her ideas are interesting, but not executed as well as I would have liked in long form. I’m curious to pick up some of her short fiction tho – that may end up being more my speed.

Continue reading “Reading Wrap up, 2019 – Books #6 – 10”

Reading Wrap up, 2019 – Books #1 – 5

New format for this years wrap ups – I’ll be doing them a tad more frequently, in groups of five.  Graphic Novels will still have their own separate wrap up every month, but for prose books, since I read so much more of them, will be done in this blocked out format.

This particular wrap up covers books that I started in the last week of December 2018 and goes to like the 9th of January (I am a fast reader, but to be fair, I was in the middle of two books when the year started that I finally got around to finishing up.). It bounces between Historical Fiction and Fantastical YA/MG with a dash of nonfiction thrown in. So I guess we’re starting off the year with some eclectic choices. And I had some pretty strong positive feelings about most of them, which is also pretty exciting.

Also if anyone’s new to this – I hate writing synopses for books, so just. Click on the link that goes to the Goodreads page if you want to see what’s up.

  • The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

    • Rating: 4/5
    • Content Warnings: Discussions of physical & mental abuse, miscarriage, death, PTSD, torture. This book takes place right after the Spanish Civil War, so keep that in mind
    • Thoughts: I’d first heard about this book over on A Clockwork Reader’s  channel a couple years ago, and it sounded extremely up my alley. Love historical fiction with mystery/thriller twists, love stories about books – So I finally got around to starting it at the end of December
    • And yo, I totally get the hype for this book. This is one of the best mysteries I’ve read in a while, and Ruiz Zafón does it with such great prose and atmosphere. You gotta give the translation team props on this one – This book is FILLED with some just absolutely breathtaking writing, and from what I understand, really captures the original pretty damn well.
    • The plot and pacing of this book, while a bit of a slow start, flourishes into some textbook BUCK WILD. I swear, there was one twist in this book that had me actually scream out loud I was so fucking SHOCKED. And then I proceeded to not stop reading until I finished the fucking book I just had to know what the fuck was up. I loved almost every twist and turn that this novel took me on. Like even if the actions weren’t good I can’t say I was ever not shocked.
    • The characters, while for the most part interesting, just ended up not becoming some of my favorite. I think they served the story pretty well, but honestly most of them were just like way too dramatic for me to fully enjoy them. Like shit has gone DOWN in a lot of these peoples lives, but by god everyone could afford to take a chill pill at least twice in this book other than maybe like the main characters father.
    • If I had any problems with this, it’s definitely that the author’s kind of…. he’s weird with women if that make sense? I think for the most part we’re shown a lot of really interesting female characters who have a lot interesting struggles, but the way men are towards most of them, even the narrator is just absolutely bizarre. I wafted between “is this because of the time period or is the author just weird with women” – I think it’s more of the former, but I definitely found myself rolling my eyes at some of the antiquated shit the characters said in the novel.
    • This is also a pretty heavy romance book, and all the romances in this other than maybe one (which honestly I hardly call a romance), were extremely bland and over the top. Which while it fit the novel, definitely didn’t do anything for me at ALL. I think it goes hand in hand with how the women are portrayed in the novel. I was just… not convinced most of the time that some of these people had any reason to like each other? They worked more as plot devices than anything with a strong emotional core.
    • All in all, I definitely see the hype for this novel – If you’re into mystery/thrillers and are also into some good historical fiction flavor, give this a read.
  • American Wolf: A True Story of Survival and Obsession in the West by Nate Blakeslee

    • Rating: 4.25/5
    • Thoughts: I picked this up on audio book and YO this was some extremely good nonfiction. I’m slowly starting to dig out a nonfiction niche for myself, and I think I have to add scientific/nature based nonfiction to the list, because I LOVED THIS.
    • The book does an absolute phenomenal job of making you care immensely about the subject matter, and is extremely thorough in the net it cast.  It starts from the very beginning of the relative extinction wolf population in the lower 48, their reintroduction in the mid 90s, to the culture and controversy surrounding them in present day. All of this sprinkled in with hearing about real life pack dynamics and following some of these wolves’ entire story. You are GOING to get emotional. I fucking bawled like three times, especially at the ending. That author’s note KILLED ME Y’ALL.
    • The framing device used at the beginning, and throughout the novel of the hunter who ends up killing the main wolf is done super fucking well too. While this book definitely has a bit of an agenda, the author definitely tries to portray both sides of the “wolf issue” fairly.
      • Though call me a fucking tree hugging liberal but the LEAPS IN LOGIC some of these people make. “Wolves are a ploy for the federal gov’t to take away all our guns” do you hear yourself when you talk my guy.
    • I do think the book DOES dig a little too far into the weeds, especially with some of the political stuff. If Blakeslee tightened up the flow of information a bit more, I think this would have been an easy 5/5. But as it stood, I found there were a couple lulls in the story telling which I had to 2x speed through in order to stay at all engaged.
    • I definitely recommend this on audio-book if this book sounds like its your thing at all. For the most part, the book is all parts engaging, informative, and emotional, and I’m really happy this was one of my first reads I completed this year.

Continue reading “Reading Wrap up, 2019 – Books #1 – 5”

The Old Kingdom Original Trilogy at a Glance

“Does the walker choose the path, or the path the walker?” 

“Life,” said Yrael, who was more Mogget than it ever knew. “Fish and fowl, warm sun and shady trees, the field mice in the wheat, under the cool light of the moon.” 

 

(( I finished the last of this series a couple days ago and???? I had a lot of thoughts, and what good is a blog without posting some of your thoughts! Whether or not this becomes more regular on this blog is moot considering i finish series about once a blue moon but I hastily digress. ))

The Old Kingdom Series (also known as the Abhorsen Series) by Garth Nix is a high fantasy series that’s buried in the childhood of a lot of millennials I know. The first in the series, Sabriel, came out all the way in 1995, landing it safely in some of the earlier throes of the growing YA/MG fantasy. While the latest book in the Old Kingdom world came out literally in 2016, this trilogy finished up in 2004 and is, as far as I can tell, pretty beloved.

But I guess the thesis of this whole thing is: Did I like it? Well the short answer is hell yes. The long answer is… below.

Synopsis

The story in this series exists in a world where there are two “countries”, one which is pretty much early 1900s england, and the other a dark magical kingdom, which share a border that leads to a lot of weird shit (technology doesn’t work in the magical place, and magic doesn’t really work in the technological place. Though of course, the border is more of an odd gradient – as you learn more and more through the series) Of course, by dark magic I mean a lot of spooky, unexplained and strong as hell shit and a LOT of risen dead and necromancers. There’s one good necromancer though – the Abhorsen, who’s job it is to pretty much keep the world from going completely to hell. Naturally, it’s hereditary, (along with a bunch of other Magical Shit in this world), and book one starts off with the magical kingdom having gone to hell in a hand basket sometime in the last century or so,  so shits gotten pretty real.

We follow a bunch of different protagonists as the book go on, Sabriel, Lirael and Sam, but for the most they’re going around fighting off the ever present horde of dead and Free Magic Creatures and generally being really entertaining while doing it.

Continue reading “The Old Kingdom Original Trilogy at a Glance”