I'm not finished yet. About 80% done. My thoughts so far: the story is very interesting, in fact, it kept me up way way *way* past my bedtime. I wanteI'm not finished yet. About 80% done. My thoughts so far: the story is very interesting, in fact, it kept me up way way *way* past my bedtime. I wanted to know what would happen next, I wanted to have things revealed. It kept me interested. I'll try to keep my comments as spoiler-free as possible.
It starts off a bit slow, in a tavern (reminding me of the beginning of Dragonlance). That's just the setting for the real story being told, but sometimes the narrative takes a break in the tavern, but mostly (well, at least 80% through), it appears to be about the beginnings of some famous person who started from humble beginnings. Now being as the main character comes from a troupe of wandering performers, you're just going to have to accept that the dramatic will often swing over into the melodramatic. Just imagine if Harry Potter had been in his high school drama club instead of the quidditch team. ;p
Protagonist starts with a wonderful, lovely beginning. Everything is great, and he's happy. Then, of course, his world turns up-side-down, and his life sucks, and he's barely surviving a hardscrabble guttersnipe's life a la Oliver Twist until he's able to pull himself up and get going on his journey to becoming a legendary hero.
It reminds me of a cross between, say, Robin Hobb's Farseer trilogy plus a bit of Tad William's Memory, Sorrow, Thorn series, with a bit of a Harry Potter-ish vibe. I don't know if any fantasy novel set in a school for magicians will ever escape that comparison, but to be fair, it's less cutesy, and not for kids, and unrelated to the real world, no nudges and winks to the reader with fanciful candies and nonsensical sports games. But it's got the typical poor outcast kid going to school with some rich snobby assholes who are always looking to get him into trouble. But whereas Harry Potter (in the first few books/movies I'm aware of) was always a nice honorable kid with only a dash of mischief, this main character is way more mischievious and gritty. His few friends at school come across as an insignificant blur in the background. The masters (professors) are much more interesting and integral to the character's learning and development.
The story gets a 4 from me. But the Marty-Stu nature of the main character gets a 3. He learned *everything* quickly, can do *everything* well, except chat up pretty girls, that is. So far that seems to be his only acknowledged flaw, nevermind his lack of modesty about his extraordinary brilliance. Maybe he would have come across less cocky if he wasn't the storyteller for his own story. I wonder how it'd be to read another such protagonist-cum-legend, say, Aragorn telling his own story around the tavern fire.
Okay, now that I'm finished, I am willing to ease up a bit on my annoyance with the hero telling his story. Not enough to give the book 5 stars, but I am looking forward to the rest of the story to unfold....more
it's been over a decade since I read this, but it still sticks in my mind, how she thought she had made an original song, but was then told that no, tit's been over a decade since I read this, but it still sticks in my mind, how she thought she had made an original song, but was then told that no, that's actually derived from this and that song, and the sense that "everything's been done already!" including stories....more
This story stuck with me for the longest time. I absolutely regret that one year I decided to try re-selling books to a used bookstore. This was one oThis story stuck with me for the longest time. I absolutely regret that one year I decided to try re-selling books to a used bookstore. This was one of the books I foolishly resold, and then I spent another decade looking for another copy because I felt haunted by the story of the forest full of myths. Anyhow, could never get myself to resell or otherwise get rid of books after that year. I have learned my lesson!...more