This book is about a girl who is sent to live with her aunt after her mother dies (although her older sister gets to stay wi...moreNot bad, but not exciting.
This book is about a girl who is sent to live with her aunt after her mother dies (although her older sister gets to stay with their father). It goes through her years in elementary school thru high school.
I had read this as a child and re-read it this weekend while visiting my mother for Thanksgiving, wondering why it was still on the shelf when so many other books had been given away. Not sure, since the re-read didn't ring any sentimental bells.(less)
I automatically read anything new from Mercedes Lackey that I see on the New Books shelf in the library. This one wasn't bad, but not particularly mem...moreI automatically read anything new from Mercedes Lackey that I see on the New Books shelf in the library. This one wasn't bad, but not particularly memorable. Rating 2.5 stars using GR rating description (2=OK, 3=good).
The main character, Mags, is a Herald Trainee who is an orphan with no memory of his parents. In the previous book (which I don't remember, but this one has a lot of backstory) he was kidnapped by agents who wanted to take him back to his ancestral tribe. This book starts with his return to Haven and reunion with his friends.
Despite being labelled as "Book Five of the Collegium Chronicles" very little of the action takes place at the Collegium. Mags and his friends travel to the area where his parents may have died, in an effort to confuse the people behind the kidnapping. They set up in a large cave system and travel to local villages. Since the group includes a Healer, two Bards, a full Herald (beside Mags), two Companions, and Mags' girlfriend, they are well prepared for whatever they may face.
There were some interesting plot points, especially concerning the role of Heralds in isolated areas, but I never connected emotionally with any of the characters.(less)
This was a decent police procedural, but it lacked some of what I expected from Faye Kellerman. Although the cover says "A Decker/Lazarus Novel", Rina...moreThis was a decent police procedural, but it lacked some of what I expected from Faye Kellerman. Although the cover says "A Decker/Lazarus Novel", Rina (Lazarus) hardly appeared. Her role was limited to cooking and being supportive. Also, while the issue of Decker's Judaism was mentioned, it wasn't a big deal. I liked the mystery part although it seemed unrealistic. How can someone keep a tiger in an apartment without having the neighbors notice?(less)
This was a very interesting novel about a real person whom I had never heard of. Elizabeth Van Lew (called Lizzie in this book) was a native of Richmo...moreThis was a very interesting novel about a real person whom I had never heard of. Elizabeth Van Lew (called Lizzie in this book) was a native of Richmond Virginia who sympathized with the Union during the Civil War. Since Richmond was the capital of the Confederacy, she could not express her sympathies openly but managed to work with Union soldiers who had been captured and to send information north to help the Union forces.
3.5 stars (using Goodreads scale where 3 is liked and 4 is really liked).
Initiate's Trial starts 250 years after the previous book in the series (Stor...more3.5 stars (using Goodreads scale where 3 is liked and 4 is really liked).
Initiate's Trial starts 250 years after the previous book in the series (Stormed Fortress) but because so many of the characters have magical longevity it doesn't feel as though that much time has gone by: Arithon and Lysaer are still subject to the Mistwraith's curse; Elaira is still deeply in love with Arithon even though she hasn't seen him for over 200 years; Prime Seldie is still plotting the downfall of Arithon and of the Fellowship; Lirenda is still jealous of Seldie... I found it hard to accept that there hadn't been more changes, either in the society portrayed or in the ongoing characters.
There was a key point which I didn't remember from the previous book. (view spoiler)[ This book starts with Arithon as a captive of the Koriathan, apparently having been betrayed to them by Dakar and Eriegal. (hide spoiler)] One of the other reviews says that this happened offstage (i.e. after the end of Stormed Fortress but before Initiate's Trial). It was a relief to know that I hadn't forgotten something so important, but I would like to know more of what happened then.
Having said that, I still ached for Arithon (on the run for almost the entire book) and am looking forward to the next book. Janny Wurts has a beautiful, although very wordy, style of writing. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
The cover of the book shows the author as J.R.R. Tolkien and in much smaller print "Edited by Christopher Tolkien. Actually, out of 233 pages, the poe...moreThe cover of the book shows the author as J.R.R. Tolkien and in much smaller print "Edited by Christopher Tolkien. Actually, out of 233 pages, the poem by J.R.R. Tolkien is 41 pages. The rest of the book is explanatory material.
The unfinished poem "The Fall of Arthur" is quite good. It is in the form of Old English alliterative verse, which is very descriptive (and doesn't usually rhyme). It is set at the end of King Arthur's reign. I could feel the storms, see the sea, and follow the story being told in verse. There was one place that threw me out - it mentioned Arthur at the edge of Mirkwood and I went "Huh? King Arthur was in Middle Earth?" If this were to be published as a pocket version with just the poem, I would rate it 4 or 4.5 stars. (The reason for not 5 stars is because it is unfinished.)
The poem ends on page 57. (I am using page numbers from hardback edition with ISBN 9780544115897.) Pages 61-70 are Notes, most of which are explanations of older words used.
Pages 73-122 is an essay by Christopher Tolkien "The Poem in Arthurian Tradition". This is a scholarly exploration of various Arthurian poems from the 12th century up to Malory's Le Morte d'Arthur: King Arthur and the Legends of the Round Table. Some of this I remembered from a college course on Arthurian lit, and some was new. Rating for this essay: 3 stars.
Pages 125-168 are another essay "The Unwritten Poem and its Relation to The Silmarillion. This was Christopher Tolkien talking about what his father didn't write, and how it would have fit in. I found this hard to follow. I know LOTR fairly well, but never made it through The Silmarillion and the Elven names are very similar and hard to keep straight. Rating for this essay: 2 stars, maybe 2.5.
Pages 171-220 is "The Evolution of the Poem". This is Christopher Tolkien comparing various drafts of the poem with the "final" version. (I put "final" in quotes because it was never published, so it is only final in comparison with prior drafts.) What words did he change between version I and version II? How long did he stop working on it between the different versions? This reminded me of the saying about sausage - I like it better when I don't know what's in it. Rating for this section: 1 star.
The Appendix, pages 223-233, is an explanation of Old English verse - what the format of the lines is and then how some of the lines in this poem fit that format. Very academic in its presentation. Maybe 2 stars, or maybe not rated.(less)