Our Sponsor Sideshow Send us News
Lord of the Rings Tolkien
Search Tolkien
Lord of The RingsTheOneRing.net - Forged By And For Fans Of JRR Tolkien
Lord of The Rings Serving Middle-Earth Since The First Age

Lord of the Rings Movie News - J.R.R. Tolkien

  Main Index   Search Posts   Who's Online   Log in
The One Ring Forums: Off Topic: Off Topic:
It's the occasional reading thread!

Lily Fairbairn
Half-elven


Nov 26 2022, 3:39pm

Post #1 of 13 (335 views)
Shortcut
It's the occasional reading thread! Can't Post

A happy holiday weekend to those who celebrate Thanksgiving. And now it's the official start of the Christmas season. Hold onto your Santa hats!

Now that I've finished listening to Andy Serkis's superb reading of LotR, I'm venturing into other fantasy, especially one of the Terry Pratchett novels I've been hoarding. I'm now about halfway through Wintersmith, the third Tiffany Aching/wee free men story. In this installment, Tiffany gets carried away at a dance and attracts the attention of the wintersmith, an elemental. Meanwhile, her mentor, Miss Treason, dies, sending her to live with Nanny Ogg. As usual the story is imaginative, the characters highly amusing, and the philosophical asides are thought-provoking. Stephen Briggs once again makes a brilliant narrator.

I'm also listening to Medicus, by Ruth Downie, the first book in her series set in the ancient Roman Empire. I already read a later one, so I know what happens with the main characters, Ruso the army doctor and Tilla the British slave. Not that this bothers me at all! I love the way Downie writes Ruso's wry, self-aware voice. Her Roman setting sounds perfectly natural, even colloquial, while at the same time we see Ruso's acceptance of customs and concepts we'd find alien today.

On paper I read The Sweet Remnants of Summer, by Alexander McCall Smith, a return to the Isabel Dalhousie series after a hiatus. As usual, the characters and dialog are what make the story work, since there's hardly any plot. I suspect McCall Smith wanted to make some very mild-mannered comments about today's political issues and political life, not just in Isabel's Scotland but world-wide.

I read the ebook of The Death of Lord Carnarvon: Sherlock Holmes and the Secret of King Tut Raymond Bennett.

It's an interesting premise, that Lord Carnarvon, who backed Howard Carter's discovery of King Tut's tomb in 1922, died not from an infected mosquito bite but from murder---and that Sherlock Holmes was called out of retirement to find out whodunnit. However, the novel read more like a brainstorming session than a coherent manuscript, with the author unable to decide what he’s writing: a mystery, a historical novel, an alternate history/roman a clef. The book needed an editor for continuity, plot, anachronism, and plain old grammar and proof-reading. And while I'm a pushover for Sherlock Holmes stories, I'm not comfortable with novels using real people as fictionalized characters, especially people who lived as recently as 1922.

But you'll notice I read the whole thing....

I'm now reading another paper book, Lucy's Bones, Sacred Stones, and Einstein's Brain by Harvey Rachlin. This is subtitled, The remarkable stories behind the great objects and artifacts of history, from antiquity to the modern era. It's exactly that, short essays on iconic items such as the Bayeux tapestry. It's interesting, if a bit dry.

So what have you been reading?

Where now the horse and the rider? Where is the horn that was blowing?
Where is the helm and the hauberk, and the bright hair flowing?
Where is the hand on the harpstring, and the red fire glowing?
Where is the spring and the harvest and the tall corn growing?
They have passed like rain on the mountain, like a wind in the meadow;
The days have gone down in the West behind the hills into shadow....


Greenwood Hobbit
Valinor


Nov 26 2022, 9:13pm

Post #2 of 13 (311 views)
Shortcut
Wintersmith is a good read - [In reply to] Can't Post

don't know what it'd be like as an audio book, I haven't explored those. I have all the Tiffany Aching books as well as the rest of the Pratchetts and revisit them occasionally, like going to see friends.
I read Medicus, but it didn't really draw me in, despite being set around Deva, which is only just over half an hour's drive from where I live! I think Lyndsey Davis's Falco books have spoiled me for descriptions of Roman times and characters; I read them and I'm there. That didn't happen with Medicus despite it being closer to home.
I've just read an Ann Cleeves book, Burial of Bones; cunning plotting (how does she think this stuff up?!) and troubled but plausible characters, set in NE England with a sprinkling of Morocco. I like the way she wrote the Shetland series, so am exploring other things she's written.


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Nov 26 2022, 9:15pm

Post #3 of 13 (311 views)
Shortcut
Back to Tolkien! [In reply to] Can't Post

I finally received The Fall of Numenor yesterday and started it at work. Haven't gotten past the intro yet.

“Hell hath no fury like that of the uninvolved.” - Tony Isabella


Greenwood Hobbit
Valinor


Nov 26 2022, 10:50pm

Post #4 of 13 (299 views)
Shortcut
Oops - Burial of Ghosts, not Bones! [In reply to] Can't Post

 


Lily Fairbairn
Half-elven


Nov 27 2022, 3:08pm

Post #5 of 13 (288 views)
Shortcut
I like Falco, too [In reply to] Can't Post

But I find his wise-cracking first-person voice to occasionally be a bit anachronistic. I once met Ms Davis and she's a lovely, polite person.

As for Ann Cleeves, I like her work, too, but find her a bit long-winded.

Where now the horse and the rider? Where is the horn that was blowing?
Where is the helm and the hauberk, and the bright hair flowing?
Where is the hand on the harpstring, and the red fire glowing?
Where is the spring and the harvest and the tall corn growing?
They have passed like rain on the mountain, like a wind in the meadow;
The days have gone down in the West behind the hills into shadow....


Annael
Immortal


Nov 27 2022, 5:19pm

Post #6 of 13 (285 views)
Shortcut
I too revisit Tiffany and the Wee Free Men on occasion [In reply to] Can't Post

Pratchett never disappoints no matter how many times I've read a book of his before.

I've spent most of the last week editing an amazing book about personality disorders (borderline personality, narcissistic personality etc.) These are not genetic brain disorders (and thus, the authors argue, do NOT respond to medication), but rather learned coping mechanisms that are very difficult to unlearn. It's written by a woman who, thanks to a horrific childhood, had severe borderline disorder, interspersed with comments from the therapist who helped her - who himself has recovered from a personality disorder. Her will to get better despite all the odds and many failures shines through, and his explanations of personality disorders are simple and clear. There is none of the blame-the-narcissist/pity-the-poor-borderline attitude that is rampant on the internet these days; both authors speak out of compassion. I learned so much - to the point that watching holiday rom-coms now, all I can see is is stories of how people who have one of these dysfunctional coping mechanisms learn how to connect in a genuine way.

I have in hand "Salt to the Sea," about the sinking of the Wilhelm Gustloff, a far greater tragedy than those of the Lusitania or Titanic (9000 people died), so that's up next.

I am a dreamer of words, of written words.
-- Gaston Bachelard

* * * * * * * * * *

NARF and member of Deplorable Cultus since 1967


Aunt Dora Baggins
Immortal


Nov 29 2022, 1:20pm

Post #7 of 13 (263 views)
Shortcut
That book sounds fascinating! [In reply to] Can't Post

What a hopeful thing that people can actually unlearn those copng mechanisms and replace them with something better. I'd love to read it when it's done.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
GNU Terry Pratchett
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"For DORA BAGGINS in memory of a LONG correspondence, with love from Bilbo; on a large wastebasket. Dora was Drogo's sister, and the eldest surviving female relative of Bilbo and Frodo; she was ninety-nine, and had written reams of good advice for more than half a century."
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"A Chance Meeting at Rivendell" and other stories

leleni at hotmail dot com
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



Aunt Dora Baggins
Immortal


Nov 29 2022, 1:26pm

Post #8 of 13 (265 views)
Shortcut
Steeleye Span did a Wintersmith album [In reply to] Can't Post

The Wintersmith album is based on the Tiffany Aching books and includes a bit of narration by Sir Terry himself. Some of the songs make me cry every time. They really capture the feel of the books, with lyrics taken right from the pages. And the instrumental Dark Morris is amazingly compelling.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
GNU Terry Pratchett
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"For DORA BAGGINS in memory of a LONG correspondence, with love from Bilbo; on a large wastebasket. Dora was Drogo's sister, and the eldest surviving female relative of Bilbo and Frodo; she was ninety-nine, and had written reams of good advice for more than half a century."
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"A Chance Meeting at Rivendell" and other stories

leleni at hotmail dot com
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



Aunt Dora Baggins
Immortal


Nov 29 2022, 1:54pm

Post #9 of 13 (263 views)
Shortcut
Finished The Count of Monte Cristo, halfway through The Fall of Numenor [In reply to] Can't Post

I was listening to CoMC from librivox. The third version, the solo one, took some getting used to as the English reader put on French, Spanish and Italian accents, but it ended up being great. He did different voices for each of that huge cast of characters. I listened to it on my morning walks and when I was driving, and it took weeks. Such a different experience from when I was 13 and binge read the whole thing in a marathon weekend.

What a great yarn! And like LotR in the lush way he describes the scenery, and takes time on side stories, with so many characters. It's about the same length as LotR too.

My favorite side story remains the love story of the lesbians Eugenie and Loise. It's only one chapter out of 117, but it's so sweet that they get a happy ending.

I'm about halfway through The Fall of Numenor, which I'm reading in the yummy hardback form. I'm pretty much familiar with all it, but how wonderful to have it all in one book in chronological order. Suddenly it feel more like a story and less like bits of history. Sibly has done an amazing job of pulling in writing from LotR (and not only from the appendices, though that's the scaffolding that holds it all together,) Unfinished Tales, The Silmarillion, Peoples of Middle Earth, and the Letters, and probably other places, and making a coherent whole that reads almost like a novel.

Back in 1970, when I first read LotR and heard scuttlebut that Tolkien was trying to finish The Silmarillion, I thought it was going to be a novel about the Second Age, and desperately wanted to read it. I feel like I'm finally getting that wish.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
GNU Terry Pratchett
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"For DORA BAGGINS in memory of a LONG correspondence, with love from Bilbo; on a large wastebasket. Dora was Drogo's sister, and the eldest surviving female relative of Bilbo and Frodo; she was ninety-nine, and had written reams of good advice for more than half a century."
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"A Chance Meeting at Rivendell" and other stories

leleni at hotmail dot com
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



Annael
Immortal


Nov 29 2022, 3:14pm

Post #10 of 13 (256 views)
Shortcut
hopefully it will find a publisher soon [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm doing the final editing pass now before Steve (the therapist) sends it to his agent.

I am a dreamer of words, of written words.
-- Gaston Bachelard

* * * * * * * * * *

NARF and member of Deplorable Cultus since 1967


Lily Fairbairn
Half-elven


Nov 30 2022, 8:38pm

Post #11 of 13 (245 views)
Shortcut
Really? Wow! [In reply to] Can't Post

I was a big Steeleye Span fan back in the day, many years before the Aching books were even published. I see the Wintersmith album is 2013. I'll check it out. Thank you!

Where now the horse and the rider? Where is the horn that was blowing?
Where is the helm and the hauberk, and the bright hair flowing?
Where is the hand on the harpstring, and the red fire glowing?
Where is the spring and the harvest and the tall corn growing?
They have passed like rain on the mountain, like a wind in the meadow;
The days have gone down in the West behind the hills into shadow....


Annael
Immortal


Dec 1 2022, 3:03pm

Post #12 of 13 (227 views)
Shortcut
I didn't know they were still together! [In reply to] Can't Post

I pretty much wore out my old LP of "All Around My Hat" listening to it over and over. Some of us learned "Gaudete" and performed it in church one Christmas. I love Maddy Prior's voice. Will look for "Wintersmith."

I am a dreamer of words, of written words.
-- Gaston Bachelard

* * * * * * * * * *

NARF and member of Deplorable Cultus since 1967


Starling
Half-elven


Dec 1 2022, 7:26pm

Post #13 of 13 (221 views)
Shortcut
My Mum famously misheard this as [In reply to] Can't Post

'Steel Ice Band'.
It was a family joke for decades. Laugh



 
 

Search for (options) Powered by Gossamer Forum v.1.2.3

home | advertising | contact us | back to top | search news | join list | Content Rating

This site is maintained and updated by fans of The Lord of the Rings, and is in no way affiliated with Tolkien Enterprises or the Tolkien Estate. We in no way claim the artwork displayed to be our own. Copyrights and trademarks for the books, films, articles, and other promotional materials are held by their respective owners and their use is allowed under the fair use clause of the Copyright Law. Design and original photography however are copyright © 1999-2012 TheOneRing.net. Binary hosting provided by Nexcess.net

Do not follow this link, or your host will be blocked from this site. This is a spider trap.