The Sunday Salon: Fantasy 101

As I tend to mention a great deal, I was reared on The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time and Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings. If asked to choose one genre to read for the rest of my life, I’d happily answer fantasy. My reading resolutions were drawn up mostly to keep me from just gorging myself on fantasy and the occasional piece of science fiction and historical fiction. But I’m so happy swimming in the deep end that I rarely notice people at the edge tentatively dipping their toes in the pool. (It is, of course, a mana pool.) I know for people who haven’t read much fantasy that the genre can look intimidating, so today I’m going to recommend fantasy novels based on what other genres you enjoy. So take a deep breath and relax. This won’t hurt a bit.

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Booking Through Thursday: The Favorites Game

Who’s your favorite author that other people are NOT reading? The one you want to evangelize for, the one you would run popularity campaigns for? The author that, so far as you’re concerned, everyone should be reading–but that nobody seems to have heard of. You know, not JK Rowling, not Jane Austen, not Hemingway–everybody’s heard of them. The author that you think should be that famous and can’t understand why they’re not…

For all my literary omnivorousness, I do tend to read and really enjoy popular authors. I love Neil Gaiman and Gregory Maguire (when he isn’t being a horrible tease about the plot I actually care about in the Wicked cycle), for instance. I am woefully mainstream in this regard.

I do have a few authors that I love that I’m astounded aren’t more popular or well-known, but they have their own concentrated fan bases or, at least, are popular to some degree. (Again: woefully mainstream! This is part of the reason I’m trying to be more widely read.)

For Kristin Cashore and Diana Peterfreund, I’m sure it’s just a matter of time. I feel like it’s fairly early on in their literary careers. Cashore’s Graceling really blew me away, and I’m always recommending it to people who have never heard of it. (It helps that Little Shop of Stories has her books. I have to keep myself back from buying the hardback of Fire, since I have a paperback of Graceling.) Diana Peterfreund’s earlier work, I think, probably distracts from Rampant, which was amazing. I don’t have an opinion on her earlier work (haven’t read it), but it appears to be a far cry from killer unicorns. The fact that both writers write young adult fiction might turn off a few snobs, but I think it’s only a matter of time before they’re more well-known and celebrated.

Booking Through Thursday: 2009 in Review

What were your favorite books of the year? (Books that were new to you in 2009, if not necessarily published this year.)

This year, I started The Literary Omnivore. I’ve been a voracious reader for years, and I decided book blogging would be a wonderful creative outlet for me somewhere in October, after a presentation at my school about “e-portfolios”. The book blogging community has been more than welcoming- thank you, ladies! It’s been one of the best things about this year, up there with the inauguration, Dragon*Con, and my first semester of college.

In order to answer this question, I’ve put together a top ten list of the books I read this year. I try to read widely, but I must admit- I have a predisposition for fantasy and strong female characters, which shows in this list.

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Teaser Tuesday: Rampant

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

“Forgive me if enforced lifelong celibacy and possible death by dismemberment and poisoning don’t exactly get me excited.”
“How about being part of something ancient and important, something that belongs only to you?”

pg. 31 of Rampant by Diana Peterfreund

PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your 2 ‘teasers’ in a comment here (if you don’t have a blog). Thanks!

The Sunday Salon: Writing Utensils

I’ve always kept personal notes in different ways over the years. When I was a wee lass (here defined as that unfortunate period called middle school), I always wrote with a good, old Bic mechanical pencil in the various notebooks I kept. I refused to write on the backs of the notebook pages, which was quite a waste of space. In these notebooks, I wrote my stories, such as they were, neatly marked in the margins what story it was. I couldn’t bring myself to write something in a notebook that was meant for fiction or something. I did not keep personal notes at all.

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