Author Topic: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings  (Read 43702 times)

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Offline Scorpion

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #70 on: September 12, 2014, 10:34:32 AM »
Well, I just finished The Dark Tower and I'm not sure what I should think.

That was about the feeling I had at the end.

Actually, the more I think about the ending, the more I like, and I can't imagine it ending in any other way. I have many thoughts on the matter, and they are more or less all summed up in this thread by different posters: http://www.reddit.com/r/FanTheories/comments/1cuqmq/stephen_king_the_dark_tower/. I shouldn't have to say this, but SPOILERS. It's definitely one of the more intriguing endings that I've read in a while, that's for sure.
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Offline Dimitrius

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #71 on: September 12, 2014, 08:09:27 PM »
Dude, the first time I read that ending I was like "oh shit! the fuck just happened here?!" But the more  I thought about it the more it was just such a perfect ending to the story (reprising one of the big themes from the books) and, overall, one of the best King endings!
« Last Edit: September 12, 2014, 08:15:55 PM by Dimitrius »
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Offline Fluffy Lothario

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #72 on: September 12, 2014, 09:36:16 PM »
I had mixed feelings about that ending.

Obviously, huge spoilers if you read on.

I only read the book once, and it was ten years ago, but I read something online a while ago suggesting the encounter with the Three Kings is far more significant to the story than it seemed when I first read it. From memory, they tell him he has successfully destroyed the Crimson King's operations, he's killed everyone he was involved with, gone insane, and locked himself in the Tower. He's no harm to the Tower or anyone anymore. Okay, I guess you can argue there's an insane superpowerful wizard out there, and Roland might feel a duty to do something about it, but does he? From memory, he's just like "this is great news and all, but I must continue to the Tower". In other words, up til this point, the whole idea that his friends will stop dying if he forgets the Tower was true, but belies the fact that he had a job to do: stop the Crimson King from destroying the Tower. Now the job is done, for sure, and he can go home, but he keeps going. Everything that happens from that point on is collateral that Roland incurs on himself.

I love how the story devolves and decays the closer it gets to the Tower. They leave any noteworthy setting behind, the characters they encounter start to seem ethereal and only half-real. In those final chapters, the last few characters are scrambling, almost on their hands and knees, in the empty waste around the Tower. Roland is being hunted by his son, who killed off the main villain, whose potential power is huge, but is instead just a sick, twisted wraith chasing Daddy through the wilderness, yet, in a Gollum-like way, he's now Roland's worst threat, because Roland is on his last legs and far beyond any aid. That I love about the ending.

The last chapter before the Coda, however, I felt was a letdown. As much as the story's final great duel being this pitiful clash between an almost powerless Roland and the insane KC fits the devolution of the universe at the end of the book, I just hated how it was written. I mean, EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE. We couldn't have had a more developed Crimson King than that? And the way he incorporated Patrick into the ending was a bit too deus-ex-machina-esque. I feel like surely King could have come up with something else that was more satisfying. I didn't really care too much about the Coda and its effect on the narrative, as the ending had already left a sour taste in my mouth.

Offline Fluffy Lothario

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #73 on: September 12, 2014, 09:55:31 PM »
Also, I'm reading the Odyssey. Much less interesting and slower moving story than I expected. Odysseus is about to start telling King Alcinous his story, so it should get more interesting from here, hopefully. For the most part, it's felt so far like a treatise on proper hospitality, on how to receive guests and be received, in Ancient Greece, because that's all that ever seems to be happening.

Offline adace

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #74 on: September 13, 2014, 05:53:54 PM »
The Grail Quest series by Bernard Cornwell.

Offline Sacul

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #75 on: September 14, 2014, 07:50:38 PM »
Ok, finally finished Crossroads of Twilight by Robert Jordan this afternoon. The first half is dreadful and slow, boring, specially when Perrin is the main character of the chapter (I love him but damn, those parts :sadpanda: ). The rest felt more like a typical WOT book, and even the final 100 pages were really interesting. Cool plot twist at the end. All in all, I'm looking forward to reading the following, Knife of Dreams. Light, this series is damn long.

Offline masterthes

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #76 on: September 18, 2014, 02:22:25 PM »
Also reading A Soldier of the Great War by Mark Helprin. Only 50 pages in and I think I may enjoy this more than Winter's Tale

Offline WDADU

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #77 on: September 18, 2014, 03:27:08 PM »
Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho, by Stephen Rebello.
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Offline hefdaddy42

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #78 on: September 20, 2014, 05:16:47 AM »
Joyland by Stephen King

Let me know what you think.  I read half of it and then I ended up moving which caused me to not have time to read for awhile and I never got back to it.  If it ends well, ill have to consider picking it back up, but I was a bit bored through the first half which is why I havent been motivated to pick it back up.
Will do.  I'm just starting it today.
I finished this morning.  I really liked it, it was a nice, satisfying tale.  Not sure how much re-reading value it will have, but it was a fun little read.  In some ways, reminiscent of some of his older stories like Stand By Me.  Also, I liked that he published it in the Hard Case Crime series, like his previous book The Colorado Kid, which was a more straight up mystery/crime novel.  This one has a hint of supernatural, so in that respect, it is more Kingish.

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Offline Onno

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #79 on: September 20, 2014, 03:40:02 PM »
I thought Joyland was great, I think I read it last Summer.

I'm reading Crime and Punishment by Dostoyevsky now. Is it just me, or is this book very depressing? I'm not too far in yet though.

Offline Evermind

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #80 on: September 21, 2014, 12:52:27 PM »
I'm reading Crime and Punishment by Dostoyevsky now. Is it just me, or is this book very depressing? I'm not too far in yet though.

It's not just you, this book is depressing as hell. I've never read English translation, so I don't know how good it is, but it's got to be one of my favourite books in Russian.

Offline hefdaddy42

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #81 on: September 22, 2014, 08:56:19 AM »
Sycamore Row by John Grisham

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Offline Podaar

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #82 on: September 22, 2014, 09:21:42 AM »
Sycamore Row by John Grisham

I loved Sycamore Row...and hated it all at the same time. So disturbing.

Offline hefdaddy42

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #83 on: September 22, 2014, 09:37:24 AM »
Sycamore Row by John Grisham

I loved Sycamore Row...and hated it all at the same time. So disturbing.
Well, I'm only on page 108, so I'm barely into very much of the plot at all.  I like it so far.

I don't read Grisham very often, but I noticed that this is a sequel (of sorts) to A Time To Kill, which I really enjoyed.

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Offline Podaar

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #84 on: September 22, 2014, 10:01:23 AM »
Yeah, I don't typically read Grisham either. The most non-Grisham like books have somehow made it into my library though.

I would rate A Painted House very highly among the finest of American literature.

Offline Podaar

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #85 on: September 22, 2014, 12:18:24 PM »
Killing Floor - Lee Child

I'm a Lee Child noob and Jack Reacher virgin, so this should be interesting.

Offline hefdaddy42

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #86 on: September 22, 2014, 01:03:16 PM »
Killing Floor - Lee Child

I'm a Lee Child noob and Jack Reacher virgin, so this should be interesting.
I love the Reacher series, and that one may be my favorite. 

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Offline Podaar

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #87 on: September 22, 2014, 02:42:34 PM »
I'm getting used to the clipped, macho prose. I may even start talking like that. To everyone. Every. Single. One.

Offline Podaar

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #88 on: September 24, 2014, 09:54:28 AM »
Okay, I finished Killing Floor.

The great: (1) The mystery (main plot) was terrific. Possibly the best mystery I've read...maybe ever. (2) The author didn't withhold any plot elements (that I noticed) from the reader so there was plenty of opportunity to figure out things ahead of the protagonist. (3) Reacher isn't a bumbling moron who lucks into saving the day. I find that very refreshing!

The good: (1) The author strikes a good balance between describing the environment and allowing the reader's imagination to fill in the rest. (2) Reacher's sense of loyalty makes his motivations believable.

The meh: The violence is shockingly brief and brutal, with little or no moral struggle. Even characters around the protagonist tend to brush off the violence. This is somewhat compensated for by the extreme nastiness of the enemies...they pretty much earned a brutal end.

The bad: Clipped prose. It's off-putting. Ham-handed. Amateurish? When you read long stretches, you get used to it. Some. When you return--not so much. Takes a while to get back in the swing. Know what I mean? Lacks pronouns.

All in all, I enjoyed it enough to see if the plot quality continues with some of the other books in the series. I'm really hoping the prose improves, but I'm more than just a bit sure that it is intentional. The author seems to be eschewing florid speech in an attempt to give the whole narrative a muscular, intimidating mood. He's writing about a different kind of hero and the prose is part of the way he throws off stereotypes of the genre.

Anyway, I'm off to figure out what I should read next.

Offline hefdaddy42

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #89 on: September 24, 2014, 11:01:00 AM »
That prose style is Child's writing style, and suits Reacher well.  There is no unnecessary language, like Reacher has no unnecessary actions or movements (or even thoughts).  It reminds me of Hemingway.  But it is what it is.

I find it extremely refreshing, because a lot of things I read are overly wordy.  But if it bothers you that much, then this may not be the series for you.

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Offline Podaar

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #90 on: September 24, 2014, 12:08:53 PM »
That prose style is Child's writing style, and suits Reacher well.  There is no unnecessary language, like Reacher has no unnecessary actions or movements (or even thoughts).  It reminds me of Hemingway.  But it is what it is.

I find it extremely refreshing, because a lot of things I read are overly wordy.  But if it bothers you that much, then this may not be the series for you.

I was, perhaps, a bit overly critical, in that it didn't bother me so much as it just got in the way of the story sometimes by being so front and center. Like I said, I enjoyed it enough to order another book. I'm skipping forward in the series quite a bit and ordering:

Without Fail -- Lee Child

I hope that was a good choice.  :)

Offline hefdaddy42

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #91 on: September 24, 2014, 02:22:14 PM »
Yeah, it's good.

Not sure if you saw the film Jack Reacher or not, but the novel it was based on is One Shot.  It's one of my favorites.

The only one I didn't really care for was Echo Burning.

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Offline Podaar

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #92 on: September 24, 2014, 03:02:33 PM »
Hef,

Have you read the Lucas Davenport series of books by John Sandford? Reacher reminds me a lot of Davenport in that they aren't the typical sleuths and are both big men who are hard boiled in a non-typical fashion. Of course, the differences in the characters' attitudes toward modern life and worldly possessions couldn't be wider apart. Davenport is rich, and flaunts it.  :)

Offline hefdaddy42

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #93 on: September 24, 2014, 07:52:13 PM »
Nope. But I may check it out.

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Offline Evermind

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #94 on: September 26, 2014, 08:03:59 AM »
Ok, finally finished Crossroads of Twilight by Robert Jordan this afternoon. The first half is dreadful and slow, boring, specially when Perrin is the main character of the chapter (I love him but damn, those parts :sadpanda: ). The rest felt more like a typical WOT book, and even the final 100 pages were really interesting. Cool plot twist at the end. All in all, I'm looking forward to reading the following, Knife of Dreams. Light, this series is damn long.

Just finished Knife of Dreams and found it a lot more enjoyable than Crossroads. I agree though, Perrin's chapters are quite boring.

Now onto The Gathering Storm. I'm not a fan of the cases when series are finished by someone else, but I want to know what happens next, so whatever.  :lol

Offline Podaar

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #95 on: September 29, 2014, 11:18:38 AM »
I finally (I've been busy) finished Without Fail and really enjoyed it! Reacher is a very interesting character and not nearly as one dimensional as you would think just from surface descriptions. His relationship with Neagley is layered with nuances that feel real and poignant. When he respected her enough to sit still as she struggled to touch his hand...wow! He knew she was desperate to offer him some comfort but was patient enough to let it come on her terms--and you just know that if she had bailed on the whole idea he would have been fine with it and understood.

I think there is a lesson there worth absorbing.

I don't feel like I'm finished exploring this series yet. I think I'll order One Shot. Since I have seen the movie it might be fun to see the differences between the two.

[edit]

Oh, and I find myself slightly amused by the British words used by U.S. characters.  :)  No 'Mercan would call the pastor of a rural Wyoming church a Vicar, and we never "switch" off electrical/electronic stuff...we "turn" them off.  :biggrin:

Offline lucky7

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #96 on: September 30, 2014, 05:42:36 PM »
Rereading The Vampire Chronicles by Anne Rice in wait for her Oct 28 release Prince Lestat.
So far have reread Interview with the Vampire, The Vampire Lestat, Queen of the Damned and next my fave. Tale of the Bodythief.  :smiley: 

I love all the Jack Reacher books by Lee Child, I haven't got the latest one yet, has anyone read it?

Sycamore Row by John Grisham I must admit I have collected John Grisham since he write A Time To Kill, but even though I have all of his books, I have felt for a while that his books are not as good, but Sycamore Row was great.....but I did wonder whether or not he actually wrote this sequel some years ago and decided to publish now ....who knows?!

A recommendation for Lee Child/Jack Reacher fans or any of this genre  is 'THE LINEUP' Edited by Otto Penzler, The World's greatest Crime Writers Tell the Inside Story of their Greatest Detectives. In their own words each author tells how their character was created.   :smiley:
« Last Edit: October 01, 2014, 06:28:12 PM by lucky7 »

Offline WDADU

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #97 on: October 01, 2014, 01:57:32 AM »
New Under the Sun, by Kevin Major.
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Offline Sacul

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #98 on: October 01, 2014, 04:29:11 PM »
I agree though, Perrin's chapters are quite boring.
Finally something we both agree on :lol . Didn't know you were reading the series too, what's your fav book from it so far? Mine would be A Crown of Swords, because the chapters with Mat are damn funny and the scene that appears on the cover of the e-book, with Nynaeve, is fucking awesome.

Offline adace

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #99 on: October 01, 2014, 07:09:28 PM »
In the past week:

The 6th Extinction by James Rollins
The Kill Switch by James Rollins and Grant Blackwood
The Trident Deception by Rick Campbell

Currently reading: The Eye of God by James Rollins

Offline hefdaddy42

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #100 on: October 03, 2014, 10:59:13 AM »
Finished Sycamore Row.  Nice, what a fun read!

Now reading Inferno by Dan Brown.

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Offline Evermind

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #101 on: October 03, 2014, 12:14:38 PM »
I agree though, Perrin's chapters are quite boring.
Finally something we both agree on :lol . Didn't know you were reading the series too, what's your fav book from it so far? Mine would be A Crown of Swords, because the chapters with Mat are damn funny and the scene that appears on the cover of the e-book, with Nynaeve, is fucking awesome.

I actually don't know about my favourite book, as you said, this series is damn long and I don't have a lot of time for reading, so it's kind of a blur what happened in which book. I recall there are parts I'm really fond of and invested in the plot and there are parts I totally don't care about in like every book. I guess I can say they're consistent, almost all of them, but I don't think I can name my favourite one. And I'm afraid to go to Wikipedia to refresh my memory about what happened when because I don't want to be spoiled even a bit. But I remember most of events happened earlier, so it's great to see how the small stuff Robert planted in the first few books now comes to importance.

Actually, I have a certain feeling The Gathering Storm can become my favourite book in the series, I'm immensely enjoying it right now. I'm taking every moment I can to keep reading, and I'm slowly crawling to the middle of the book, and I love it so far. Much better than both Crossroads and Knife, in my opinion.

edit: also, I hated Mat (and his chapters) for a long time (really small spoilers from the first four or five books ahead this knife from Shadar Logoth plot, Aes Sedai hatred and general "I don't give a fuck about anything" attitude), but I'm really starting to appreciate them now.

Offline WDADU

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #102 on: October 04, 2014, 12:35:56 AM »
Couldn't get into New Under the Sun. Started Wool, by Hugh Howey.
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Offline Sacul

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #103 on: October 04, 2014, 05:47:51 PM »
Much better than both Crossroads and Knife, in my opinion.
Wow, it must be really good since I'm highly enjoying Knife of Dreams, specially the Egwene chapters. About Mat, I also kind of hated him at the beginning, but it seems he has matured a bit and his chapters are funny most of the time. Btw, Tuon's a bitch :censored .

Offline adace

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Re: The Currently Reading Thread v. A Clash of Kings
« Reply #104 on: October 04, 2014, 10:26:07 PM »
Wool, by Hugh Howey.
Fantastic book. You'll be hooked for sure :tup