This and "Five Hundred Years After" rate among my most favorite books. Brust's love letter to Dumas is uncI absolutely love Brust's Khaavren Romances.
This and "Five Hundred Years After" rate among my most favorite books. Brust's love letter to Dumas is unceasingly charming, hilarious and exciting. The language here is fabulously turgid, an intentional send-up of "paid by the word" authors.
Yes, it is a complete lift of "The 3 Musketeers" but so what? I think these stories improve on the formula of the original. Athos, Porthos and Aramis would happily throw down and duel with anyone who besmirched their honor but Tazendra, Khaavren and Pel have much itchier triggers -- they'll draw steel the moment someone impugns their honor's next door neighbor. Gleefully reckless rather than bloodthirsty, you're with these characters because they are friends foremost and you want to see them achieve their ambitions.
For fans of Brust's "Vlad" stories, these books also give a glimpse into the history of that world. It's books like this that make reading fun....more
I love "Five Hundred Years After" every bit as much as I love the "Phoenix Guards", and this is in spite of the fact that I almost always skip past thI love "Five Hundred Years After" every bit as much as I love the "Phoenix Guards", and this is in spite of the fact that I almost always skip past the "Greycat" plotline when I read this book. Even if I just stick with the chapters that cover the exploits of Khaavren, Pel, Tazendra and Aerich the story is completely enjoyable and satisfying.
For Vlad fans: the legendary assassin Mario has a supporting role in this story, so there's the added bonus of seeing him in action....more
"I'd give this four stars, myself. It's rare anymore to find a novel of such depth and quality." "But you wrote it, I'd hardly consider that an imparti"I'd give this four stars, myself. It's rare anymore to find a novel of such depth and quality." "But you wrote it, I'd hardly consider that an impartial review." "Shut up and pass me the Scotch, harridan." "I'm not finished with it yet. When are you going to actually make some money. I'm not getting any younger." "Ah! That's good Scotch. Isn't that Coupland fellow dropping by?" "Any minute now. Thanks for reminding me, I need to go put my face on." "I've been trying to get you to do that for years. Stay out of your secret Vodka stash while you're back there! I don't need your booze-soaked breath scaring our visitors away!"...more
This is J.R.R. Tolkien's attempt at writing an encyclopedia, I think. It has an awful lot to do with various eAh Middle Earth has never been so dusty!
This is J.R.R. Tolkien's attempt at writing an encyclopedia, I think. It has an awful lot to do with various elven nobles behaving badly. Presumably this is before they grew out of their "attracted to shiny objects" stage because the whole plot of this history seems to revolve around possessing some attractive jewels. Yes, yes, yes it's the embodiment of Manwe's song or whatever, a metaphor for all that is beautiful and perfect in creation, but it still amounts to a bunch of humorless immortals running around skewering each other so that they can hold the Magic Rock.
Props to Tolkien for taking his world-building so far that he actually wrote a mythology for his imaginary characters to believe in. That's attention to detail.
However, it's not exactly gripping stuff and can really only be recommended to people who want to study Tolkien and plumb the "deeper meanings" of his infinitely more popular "Lord of the Rings" trilogy....more