Saturday, October 22, 2022

Tai'shar Manetheren!

 Everyone likes good music and Fantasy fans have a particular fondness for it; blame/credit Tolkien for all the amazing songs he wrote and included in both The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. Amazon's The Wheel of Time adaption has done something similar, creating an original song entitled Weep for Manetheren. A good song with varying renditions of it are all over YouTube, but this particular version I think deserves special attention. Why? Because it is sung in the Old Tongue, and to translate the original song, fit it to the tune, then master the pronunciation enough to sing it takes a special kind of dedication. Tai'shar Manetheren! Carai an Caldazar! Carai an Ellisande! Al Ellisande!

Monday, October 10, 2022

I just started The Queen of Raiders by Sarah Kozloff

I just started The Queen of Raiders by Sarah Kozloff, volume two of her Nine Realms series.

They say the best way to learn is by experience, which means if Cerulia of Weirandale is to win back her mother's throne as a rebel guerilla fighter she must first learn guerilla warfare. Which translates to joining Thalen's Raiders in a volcanic land of fire magic fighting against devout fanatics in a mission that could conservatively be called suicidal and accurately the best option available for all parties – namely Weirandale and the Free States – concerned. For my experience tells me that suicidal predictions are no match for brilliant battle tactics.

"Alone, who firm of feet can stand
'Gainst tugging tide or greedy gale?
Yet brace and plaited hand in hand
Companions can survive travail."

Sunday, October 9, 2022

I just finished A Queen in Hiding by Sarah Kozloff

I just finished A Queen in Hiding by Sarah Kozloff, volume one of her Nine Realms series.
If there are two classes of people I despise it is the corrupt and the treacherous, which means those who are both have a very 'special' place in my heart. Thus, though the Waters still flow, hope drains from the common people of Weirandale as an aristocracy whose only interest is power and wealth suck the realm dry of mercy and decency. All while, ironically, Fire-worshiping religious maniacs pursue a war for food and a scholar prepare to take the fight to them. Yet princella Cerulia lives and, in her, hope remains. But the time for quiet hiding has passed.
"Though dusty sits the Nargis Throne
While tyrants befoul and bluster;
Though citizens do their yoke bemoan,
And the Fountain’s lost its luster:
Someday the drought shall be broken,
And the wondrous Waters course clean,
One dawn the words shall be spoken,
As the long-lost heir becomes queen."

Thursday, October 6, 2022

My father and I just finished The Extremely Inconvenient Adventures of Bronte Mettlestone by Jaclyn Moriarty

My father and I just finished The Extremely Inconvenient Adventures of Bronte Mettlestone by Jaclyn Moriarty, book one of her Kingdoms and Empires Series.

Okay, let me me clear here; we have read a LOT of books over the better part of three decades, but NONE of them has so confounded me as to how and what to write about it once we finished. On Lantern Isle Bronte receives a special book from a very loud librarian, a book which one need only shake for the words you are looking for to fall out. Frankly, I could use that book right about now but, lacking it, I will try my best. It was a madcap adventure that went beyond the mere whimsicality such as is often found in Faerie (though this tale does not occur in Faerie) to the point of a nearly new sub-genre of Absurdist Fantasy. It was laugh-out-loud and groan-aloud. It was an utter joy and the closest to a Diana Wynne Jones book that we have ever encountered, which is the rarest and highest praise we can give a majestically spellbinding work that was a circus of surprises of every conceivable kind and a perfect ending. 

Splendid work Bronte for following those Faery cross-stitch instructions through Aunts and ice-cream, dragons and detective work, water-sprites and Whisperers, pirates and strange paintings, all the way to shaking that book to finding those three words. Until next time! (These are not the three words.)

Saturday, October 1, 2022

Quote of the month

"There are always choices when you use your brain instead of your brawn." - Carmen Sandiego