Saturday, September 9, 2017

My father and I just finished A Corner of White

My father and I just finished A Corner of White, book #1 of The Colors of Madeleine series by Jaclyn Moriarty.

How can one describe a book unlike anything one has ever read? Like this, I suppose... In a Kingdom where seasons cycle daily or weekly depending, where Colors (like the normal kind but renegade) attack or enliven people depending on where it is in the spectrum, and where Butterfly Children help crops grow if you let them out on time, dark secrets are hidden behind wondrous yet seemingly simple and grounded eccentricity.

You saw the truth, Madeleine of the World, and I hope you are willing to help the Kingdom of Cello. Elliot Baranski and a certain royal need help. Ah, the joy and danger of rescue missions!

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Knights in Shinning Armor

Knights in Shinning Armor. Warriors of Light. True Heroes. Defenders of Truth and Protectors of the Innocent.

We have all heard this before. Indeed, any person with even the barest familiarity with the High Fantasy, be they readers or gamers, will be aware of these concepts. The paragon warrior who is duty and honor up to his or her boots, girded with an almost childlike virtue and an implacable resolve to rid the land of all things evil. In short, the ultimate stereotype of Chivalry, pure and ultimate good versus utter evil. 
"Thou shalt be everywhere and always the champion of the Right and the Good against Injustice and Evil." Think King Arthur's Knights of the Round Table.

"To be a knight is to be the shield
for the meek against the cruel."
Indeed, the stereotype is so old as to be almost cloying, with such depicted knights/warriors described as everything from naive to goody-goodies...because the world and people do not exist in such shades of absolute black and white. And many of the best Fantasy authors, such as Mercedes Lackey, make an almost brutal point of it. GRRM, though I am loathe to use his name, takes it a step further and fills his work with false knights.

I agree with this, and yet the pure core here is one of the fundamental components of the High Fantasy. Why? Because the best Warriors of Light employed by the genre have seen the darkness. They defend the weak and meek not out of any sense of chivalry but because they have seen loved ones die because they, then, had not the power to defend them. What is wrong with honor? Nothing, so long as it does not interfere to the point that one is unduly hamstrung by them past the point of sense. I just feel that the term goody-goody is too often used to describe those filled with true compassion. And I say this as one who has been called a goody-goody more than thrice.
It may seem cliché and even naive, but anyone with a strong moral compass and unrelenting inner strength can be a Hero of Light. The key is being optimistic regarding humanity and believing that a better future truly is possible. Some mistake cynicism for wisdom, yet it is, per my judgement, merely a form of sophisticated surrender.



"It doesn't matter how strong we are. We have something to defend, and that's why we fight." - Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light

Friday, September 1, 2017

"All was well"

These are one of those rare, truly historical days in Fantasy literature.
The day when the children of some very old and unutterably dear friends boarded the Hogwarts express. When, 19 years on, questions were answered, loose ends tied up, and a joyous life went on without lethal flashes of green light butting into the picture. This is the new standard for happy endings, showing their validity, and is easily one of the most treasured scenes in the entire genre.

"All was well"

Luck and joy to you, Rose Granger-Weasley and James & Albus Potter. May you live long and more peaceful lives than your sires.