Sunday, 12 January 2014

gardens of the moon

Browsing in the library, having started reading my '100 Must Read Fantasy Novels' book in the Bloomsbury Good Reading Guide series, I picked up the first of Steven Erikson's Malazan series, Gardens of the Moon. The Bloomsbury guide had made it sound possibly of interest to me, a fantasy series with a slightly different approach, and the back cover made me think so too. Almost an implication that - well, it doesn't say so, but it makes me think of Band of Brothers, a grand geopolitical fantasy through the perspective of one company of soldiers involved in it. I don't expect it'll pan out entirely like that, but even if it's partly, it'll be an interesting approach.

I am mindful that there are (so far?) ten books in the series (plus perhaps others in the same setting, plus others by another author in the same setting which was a world devised by them both for rpg and unsuccessful scripts), so am perfectly ready to bale out after one volume (as I did with Game of Thrones) or earlier (though I don't like not finishing). This edition has a new introduction by the author, which is a bit self-important, self-aggrandising and off-putting, as these things often are, but I have got stuck in nonetheless. There's a long list of characters at the start, but I've ignored that; I'll just let things unfold, things which should stick will stick if it's well put together enough, and I can refer back once I'm further in if I need to. The only thing of interest he said in it was that if you don't like it after reading a third of the first book, you won't like any of it, so just bale out. I may take him at his word.