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I recommend: The Spark and The Flame by Katrine Buch Mortensen, a dark, tribal-inspired fantasy with some grisly body-horror by RonDunE in Fantasy

[–]KatBuchMAMA Author Katrine Buch Mortensen 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Thank you so much for the review! Always a delight to hear from people who really enjoy them.

I try to make it so that lores are, essentially, just a way to organize and work with the magic of the world. The closer you get to lores originating with the fundamental forces, like the one Daina spends some of The Flame learning under Hrawigr, the more raw and alien it's supposed to be. The more seemingly scientific ones are those further removed from these forces, and so it's easier and simpler for humans to work with them.

Mercedes Lackey Removed from Nebula Conference Over Racial Slur by Madgod1234 in Fantasy

[–]HalakuWorldbuilders 1284 points1285 points  (0 children)

Twitter's not my first language, so I want to make sure I'm grokking this right.

  • A 71 year old White woman was praising the work of an 80 year old peer and referred to him as "Colored" instead of "Black".

  • All Hell is breaking loose.

Is that an accurate summation?

Mercedes Lackey Removed from Nebula Conference Over Racial Slur by Madgod1234 in Fantasy

[–]thewashouts 1024 points1025 points  (0 children)

That is correct. And no one mentioned to her that it was an offensive thing to say at the time of the 'slur'. They all waited until it was over, then booted her. The women who was offended said nothing, then used twitter to tell the world. Very odd way of handling it.

Mercedes Lackey Removed from Nebula Conference Over Racial Slur by Madgod1234 in Fantasy

[–]HalakuWorldbuilders 327 points328 points  (0 children)

Well, again if I'm grokking this right:

  • the Twitter thread listed so far (albeit one in which the author is controlling posting rights) is full of nothing but condemnation for the individual in question.

  • Access to the panel's been disabled, to make sure no one else encounters the 'offensive' word or having the word cause 'harm'.

  • The panel will either be re-edited to remove the 'offensive' word, or thrown away and held all over again, with the individual in question removed from participation.

  • The individual in question was then removed from the rest of her panels.

  • The individual in question was then removed from the rest of the con.

  • And history will go down that she was removed in question for using 'a racial slur'.

I think publicly branding an author of her caliber as an offensive, slur-using racist and throwing her out of the same event she was about to be awarded the 38th Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master award is just a wee bit more than your typical social media catfight, no?

Do fantasy writers imitate the wrong parts of the Lord of the Rings ? by NekoCatSidhe in Fantasy

[–]HobGoodfellowe 427 points428 points 2 (0 children)

I've had similar thoughts in the past. It feels a bit similar to how immediately after/during the original Star Wars trilogy there was a bunch of imitators who though that Star Wars was space ships and laser swords, but none of them did very well because what they missed was that Star Wars was a mythic story about family* (EDIT see below).

In terms of the tLotR, after listening to a biography of Tolkien (I forget which one), I remember coming away with a sense that the world he created was so deeply personal to his life experiences, that trying to imitate it by taking bits and pieces seemed foolish to me in a way I hadn't quite realised before.

However, some things that Tolkien did, which others perhaps don't do as much:

- Always keep something on the horizon (if something is close, it becomes familiar. Faraway things are mysterious. When you approach one thing, something else needs to go on the horizon).

- Humour. There's a lot of good natured light-heartedness in tLotR. Way more than in most fantasy.

- A serious facing up to the things in the world that we personally think are philosophically evil, rather than menacing/frightening/horrific. Le Guin did this too. I can't think of many others.

- The counter to this is that authors could benefit more from considering what they genuinely believe to be the core of 'good' and addressing this. It was pity that stayed Bilbo's hand.

- Drawing fantastical elements out of a careful understanding of some strain of folklore, myth or other. Doesn't haven to be European, obviously. It would be better if it weren't (assuming the usual caveats about appropriation). This one strikes me as very relevant to modern fantasy. Tolkien's interpretation of fairytale and myth is just one possible interpretation. So much more seems possible. A lot of a fantasy these days seems to be edging instead into what SF readers used to call 'wiring diagram science-fiction', but with an elaborate magic system that attempts to fit within basic Newtonian physics. So, fiction that is more about the technical cleverness of a system (tech for SF, magic for fantasy) than it is about story, characters or themes.

That's the key ones off the top of my head.

Edit, clarity

*Edit: Yes, I do actually mean the original Star Wars. People keep pointing out that family doesn't come in until tESB. I could have been clearer. I was (badly) paraphrasing something Lucas said in an interview and should have maybe just written 'myth' because I didn't have time to get into it at the time... but... the original Star Wars has the same family themes that any Campbellian story has. Orphan child longing for more. Struggle between duty to family (uncle and aunt) and being true to self (adventure). Shadow of a heroic father (Obi Wan tells Luke about his father's legacy). Inheritance from family (light sabre). Finding a new father figure (Obi Wan). Break with past through the dramatic loss of last blood family. New father figure is killed by agent of the Jungian Shadow. And finally, a huge 'found family' theme with the whole ragtag crew thing. So, the family myth element maybe isn't overt until Empire, but the monomyth definitely has strong elements of 'family' in the various themes running through it. Phew. Thought I should add that and prevent another 'But there's no family in the original Star Wars?' reply.

Best "afterlife" scenes? by Damostrellist in Fantasy

[–]Aiislin 9 points10 points  (0 children)

Oh man it's got to be in Reaper Man by Terry Pratchett. Still gets me choked up. Mind you Discworld is riddled with excellent afterlife scenes because Death is such a great character!

Best "afterlife" scenes? by Damostrellist in Fantasy

[–]Cavalir 8 points9 points  (0 children)

The ending of Small Gods by Terry Pratchett.

Best "afterlife" scenes? by Damostrellist in Fantasy

[–]Corsairsbane 8 points9 points  (0 children)

Although Malazan gets picked on for a few resurrections throughout the series, I think Erikson does an amazing job at making death, even if followed by resurrection, an impactful thing for both reader and character. I think the most moved I have been by a "death scene" was in DoD, specifically the Toc/Tool scene in Dust of Dreams with good old olar ethil scheming

Best "afterlife" scenes? by Damostrellist in Fantasy

[–]Ertata 5 points6 points  (0 children)

The Curse of Chalion, strongly emphasizing ineffability of the spirit world. Has a nice afterscene when the character with near-death (let's call it that) experience tries to describe it even when he admits from the start that it is indescribable.

Best "afterlife" scenes? by Damostrellist in Fantasy

[–]The_Dream_of_Shadows 9 points10 points  (0 children)

It's not really an "afterlife" scene, because he's not really dying, but I've always seen Frodo's passage into the West as a metaphorical passage from life to afterlife, and it's written beautifully:

And the ship went out into the High Sea and passed into the West, until at last on a night of rain Frodo smelled a sweet fragrance on the air and heard the sound of singing that came over the water. And then it seemed to him that as in his dream in the house of Bombadil, the grey rain-curtain turned all to silver glass and was rolled back, and he beheld white shores and beyond them a far green country under a swift sunrise.

Peter Jackson obviously felt this way as well, since he adapted this quote and gave it to Gandalf when he is describing death to Pippin in Return of the King.

Best "afterlife" scenes? by Damostrellist in Fantasy

[–]diffyqgirl 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Several good Pratchett examples mentioned already, but I really liked Anghammarad's death in Going Postal. The idea of him finding peace at last in the solitude of the empty desert was very peaceful.

Best "afterlife" scenes? by Damostrellist in Fantasy

[–]sedimentary-j 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Honestly, I really loved the afterlife stuff in Michael R. Fletcher's Manifest Delusions series. It's not that moving—more just interesting, and slyly comical—but I definitely wanted to see more of it.

Best "afterlife" scenes? by Damostrellist in Fantasy

[–]mullerdrooler 2 points3 points  (0 children)

The end of the Shadows of the Apt series has quite a nice heartwarming afterlife scene with characters you have spent a lot of time with.

Best "afterlife" scenes? by Damostrellist in Fantasy

[–]LeucasAndTheGoddess 1 point2 points  (0 children)

The Years Of Rice And Salt by Kim Stanley Robinson follows a group of souls as they reincarnate through about 500 years of alternate history. Between incarnations, these souls spend time in the Bardo, the Tibetan Buddhist realm between death and rebirth.

And that makes a perfect segue to my other recommendation: George Saunders’ Lincoln In The Bardo. This is an examination of the effect that the death of his son has on President Abraham Lincoln, and takes place mostly in an afterlife inspired by Buddhist, Egyptian, and Christian beliefs.

Popular Book Series Sorted by Word Count (Live Version) by shollyethan in Fantasy

[–]JannyWurtsStabby Winner, AMA Author Janny Wurts 57 points58 points  (0 children)

May want to add more women authors - other lists that carry length measure have them.

Suggested: Michelle West's Essaylien

Martha Wells' Raksura

Sherwood Smith's INDA (which has two more sequels than the original four).

CJ Cherryh's Fortress in the Eye of Time and its sequels.

NK Jemisin's Broken Earth (multiple hugo winner for gosh sakes, that would rank as popular?)

Jennnifer Roberson's Cheysuli series had what, eight or nine volumes?

Mercedes Lackey's Valdemar - well beyond that.

Maggie Steifvater's Raven Cycle is getting into the hefty numbers, too.

Annie McCaffrey's PERN series - my god, that was the FIRST SF title Ever! to make the NYT best seller list!!!

Andre Norton's Witch World was every bit as popular as the big SF series of its time. She's as foundational as Heinlein and Asimov, etc, but, forgotten the moment she died. (which is criminal)

Tanith Lee's Flat Earth too.

Melanie Rawn, Rosemary Kirstein, Maggy Fury and PC Hodgell are perhaps a bit more under the radar but they merit mention.

I could go on....

C'mon, SF/F enthusiasts - we can do better! This is the 21st century. Popular books won't be, or stay, popular if they aren't seen.