It's kind of weird listening to this book as an audiobook. Going from the sort of "Literary agent" structure that the Lord of the Rings was born fromIt's kind of weird listening to this book as an audiobook. Going from the sort of "Literary agent" structure that the Lord of the Rings was born from (J.R.R. Tolkien translating a book that he found in some archive somewhere), the Silmarillion feels like it should be structured in the form of something like Beowulf or the Odyssey - a legend originally told orally, transcribed into a more written form. Thus, this should be something that would be perfect for an audiobook.
However, rather than using any of the meters or rhyming verses that those earlier works (which clearly inspired Tolkien) used, instead the book is structured in a form that's probably closer to the Bible, particularly the King James version, with a mix of events told in the abstract, combined with individual moments told with more specific details, in a very floral style.
Having the book read as an audiobook does make it less dry, and easier to get through. However, there are moments where, as a reader, I have to basically stop the book after the book summarizes a big moment (such as an epic battle between two armies), and picture that battle in my mind's eye, before continuing with the book, whereas in the more specific moments, the story in the narration plays out at about the same pace that it does in my imagination.
I am glad I've finally read the Silmarillion, but it's not something I'm going to re-read again for a while, and even then, I'll probably stick to specific passages....more
Satoshi Kon's manga Opus is a brilliant work of fiction. Probably the only work of fiction I've encountered that really gets across the interaction beSatoshi Kon's manga Opus is a brilliant work of fiction. Probably the only work of fiction I've encountered that really gets across the interaction between a writer and their characters in the same approachable way that Opus does is the film Stranger Than Fiction. However, I think that Opus does it better.
In Stranger than Fiction, (view spoiler)[the lead of the story discovers he's a fictional character, and after eventually meeting his creator, and reading the work that will result in his death, decides to accept his fate. (hide spoiler)]
In Opus, by comparison, mangaka Chikara Nagai ends up being confronted by the story's protagonist, Lin, over Nagai's planned ending, where Lin will sacrifice himself to defeat the story's antagonist - Masque. Lin steals the story's conclusion, forcing Nagai and one of the supporting characters from the story, Satoko, to find Lin, and to allow the story to conclude in a fashion that prevents the villain from abusing the fourth wall as well.
Ironically, the story of Opus is also incomplete. The magazine that Opus was serialized in was canceled before Kon could finish the story, and Kon was working on a final chapter for the story for a graphic novel release, but was delayed while working in the anime industry... and was unable to put the finishing touches on that chapter before his death of pancreatic cancer. This makes the final chapter, where Nagai confronts Kon himself over leaving a work half-complete both darkly comic and tragic, as this series ultimately lacks an ending for reasons very much outside of Kon's control.
Anyway, this is a fantastic work of manga, and one that is definitely worth picking up for fans of the medium, of Kon's work, and of literature alike....more
A fairly good adaptation of the Icewind Dale Trilogy. The graphic novel format allows for skipping some of the descriptive exposition, and lets the arA fairly good adaptation of the Icewind Dale Trilogy. The graphic novel format allows for skipping some of the descriptive exposition, and lets the art carry the fight scenes a little better than the book does (particularly related to the fact that scimitars aren't exactly thrusting weapons, and Salvatore tends to have Drizzt stabbing a bunch).
If I have one complaint, it's that Cattie-Brie's armor toward the end of The Halfing's Gem has the Female Fantasy Armor problem - of both the bared midriff and boob armor variety. I understand this is comics and you want to be stylized, but there's got to be a better way to do it. Or at the very least, just pick one - either do the bared midriff thing (leaves an important chunk of you wide open), or the boob armor (directs blades towards your heart), but don't do both. It's not just kinda sexist, it's also kinda tacky. At least when Frazetta did that lack-of-wardrobe design for his female characters, he was either doing John Carter of Mars (where everyone is mostly naked), or Swords & Sorcery (where, again, stylistically everyone is mostly naked).
This is Heroic fantasy of the European bent, and those outfits just don't work as well....more
If I had two complaints about the IDW D&D comic that John Rogers wrote, they are that Tisha Swornheart's outfit is a little too cheese-cakey (primIf I had two complaints about the IDW D&D comic that John Rogers wrote, they are that Tisha Swornheart's outfit is a little too cheese-cakey (primarily with the top - I can cut the dress a little slack because it has to accommodate the tail), and that there isn't more of it. The dynamic between the characters in the book is great, and Rogers makes the whole Points of Light idea that 4th edition was built around work incredibly well in the context of telling a story through a comic book, as opposed to an RPG campaign....more
Interesting story, which ends on a nice cliffhanger, and with a well written group of adventurers (with John Rogers, who Blue Beetle, along with beingInteresting story, which ends on a nice cliffhanger, and with a well written group of adventurers (with John Rogers, who Blue Beetle, along with being the show-runner for Leverage)....more
Interesting start to the series. In particular, I think the first 12 issues handle the "big names" among Forgotten Realms characters (Elminster, AliasInteresting start to the series. In particular, I think the first 12 issues handle the "big names" among Forgotten Realms characters (Elminster, Alias), fairly well. I'm looking forward to the next volume. Expect a longer review on Bureau42.com...more
Interesting fantasy manga from the creator of Fairy Tail. The characters are interesting and the action is really dynamic, which are points in its favInteresting fantasy manga from the creator of Fairy Tail. The characters are interesting and the action is really dynamic, which are points in its favor. Additionally, unlike Fairy Tail, Rave Master, at least in this volume, doesn't have Fairy Tail's problem with, well, the bust size of the female characters being rather absurdly large....more