Thursday, November 5, 2009

Currently Reading: Lord Foul's Bane and Fire

Posted by Simcha 5:54 PM, under | 4 comments

Unfortunately I haven't had time to get much reading, or anything else, done lately since my 1 1/2 year old has progressed into the "Terrible Twos" early (I always did say he was advanced). As soon as my attention is focused elsewhere, the little guy will begin emptying out kitchen drawers, throwing books off the shelves and sweeping everything off the table tops so that he can stamp around on top of them. And if the laptop is not being used, he enjoys trying to pry all the keys off the keyboard. If the laptop is being used, he likes to slam it down on top of my fingers. It's a good thing for all of us that he is so darn cute!

I'm not just writing this to complain (though complaining does feel good) but to explain why my blog posting has slowed down recently. Who can get any reading done with the Tasmanian devil causing mischief and havoc everywhere?

With that being said, I am currently in the middle of a couple of books;
Lord Foul's Bane by Stephen R. Donaldson and Fire by Kristin Cashore.

Lord Foul's Bane, the first book of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever, is one of those books that I have been meaning to read for years but has remained on the bottom of my book pile under all the newer books with shinier covers. But when I had misplace the book that I had intended to read, this past weekend, it seemed like a good opportunity to finally get started on Lord Foul's Bane.

The beginning of the book drew me in immediately with it's introduction to Thomas Covenant, one-time a best-selling author with a loving wife and beautiful baby, but now a leper shunned by all of his neighbors and former friends. After Thomas's leprosy was diagnosed, his wife fled with the baby, leaving him completely alone. For Thomas, every day is a struggle as he attempts to adjust to a nightmarish life with leprosy and when he discovers that someone has begun paying his bills to prevent him from coming to town to pay them himself, Thomas is furious. In an act of defiance, Thomas staggers to town in order to pay his bill himself, but after a strange interaction with a panhandler, Thomas gets hit by a car. When he awakens he finds himself in a strange world where the people believe Thomas to be the reincarnation of a hero from long-ago, sent to fight against the evil that has returned to their world.

As I mentioned, the beginning was interesting and the reading went smoothly, but after Thomas's journey in the new world begins, I had a hard time keeping at it. Thomas Covenant is an early example of an anti hero in modern fantasy, a characterization which made things interesting at first but it quickly becomes hard not to despise him. So far, he has absolutely no redeeming qualities. I have read about a third of the book so far and each time I put the book
down I have to make a concerted effort to pick it up again and continue reading. Not a good sign. I'm hoping things pick up soon otherwise I won't be finishing this book.

On the other hand, Kristin Cashore's Fire is a book I am thoroughly enjoying. All the book blogs are talking about it, and for good reason. My problem is that I only have an ebook copy of it and which I can only read on my laptop; something I can't find the time to do lately. I think I'm going to have to order an actual printed copy of Fire so I can read this book in my preferred method, curled up a comfy chair.


Simcha, your boy is so cute! And I love the artwork that is hanging there, in the picture. Oh, I remember very well the "terrible twos" and believe it or not, the "threes" can me terrifying! But the most important thing for the kiddies and us parents is their health...other stuff...we can cope with!
Now, about the books! Stop writing such good reviews because after I read them I want to read all the books you were talking about. And I don't have the time nor the money!

Thanks Ramona. I love your encouraging comments. I actually have three more of these "devils" but I had already consigned myself to the fact that I won't get anything done when they are around. But you do forget each time how challenging each new stage is and then are surprised anew at how difficult it can be. But you are right, health is the main thing.

It seems you've given up on LFB. That's a shame, though I can certainly understand your resoning. If you try again like I did and read the entire book you will be well rewarded. I daresay you'd be prompted to read the second and third books as well(much better reads).

lfb et al: I don't know, with all of the books I have waiting to be read I don't have much patience for books that I'm not particularly enjoying. Perhaps I'll go back someday and give it another try, if just to find out why these books are so popular.

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