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Monday, December 22, 2014

Amazing Stories reviews John C. Wright

Specifically, The Book of Feasts & Seasons. You'll want to read the whole thing:
This week I’m reviewing a title that’s seasonal in nature, although the seasons it deals with occur across an entire year rather than a small part of the year. I’ve not read much of Mr. Wright’s work, but what I have has been better written and more original than much of what’s currently being published.

The same is true here. These stories have a great deal of depth, both in the characters they’re about and the concepts with which they deal....Wright is an author who isn’t afraid to delve into deep topics. Some of the themes here dealt with the nature of God, forgiveness, kindness, racism, sacrifice, and second chances. A number of authors these days try to deal with serious themes and issues in their fiction. Few are as accomplished or as entertaining as Mr. Wright.

The Book of Feasts & Seasons is one of the best and most thought provoking books I’ve read in the past year. I highly recommend it.
It's perhaps worth noting that Mr. Wright's The Book of Feasts & Seasons has a 4.9/5 rating. But I find it a little surprising that of the six stories the reviewer deemed worthy of mention, none of them were the one I consider to be the best, namely, "The Parliament of Beasts and Birds".

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23 Comments:

Anonymous Jill December 22, 2014 12:43 PM  

I like the last one the best. It's extraordinarily poignant and meaningful, but then it does tug on the mom heart strings a little.

Blogger Nate December 22, 2014 1:01 PM  

Fret not Jill. I loved the last one too.

Anonymous Dr. J December 22, 2014 2:05 PM  

I'm about half-way through, and it has been excellent.

Spoiler preface

However, the Queen of the Tyrant Lizards was a little hard to like. I think I get the idea: "Hey SJWs, here's how you write this story in a legitimate science-fictiony way and still keep pushing obnoxious message fiction." Perhaps it was the use of the standard SJW tropes such as racist klansmen busting up an inter-racial marriage, or the brutally described dismemberment of said cartoon-cutout bad guys. Those details really soiled the self-sacrifice/time paradox at the end. Plus, it strains credulity to suggest one of the Southrons didn't have a gun that could take down a T-Rex.

Anonymous Jill December 22, 2014 2:10 PM  

I took the T-Rex story as a spoof on "If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love", but I could be reading too much into it. The story seems like a spoof to me, regardless of what it is a spoof of.

Anonymous Dr. J December 22, 2014 2:13 PM  

I took the T-Rex story as a spoof on "If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love", but I could be reading too much into it. The story seems like a spoof to me, regardless of what it is a spoof of.

I'm willing to accept that it's spoof/satire, but I would have expected a little more tongue-in-cheek humor if that were the case. Besides - who read the source material in the first place, apart from Hugo voters?

Anonymous BigGaySteve December 22, 2014 2:22 PM  

There is an insane new Nanny Bloomer's paid gun control ad telling kids to steal their parents guns and take them into school. This would actually result in multiple felony charges. Note the only white in the video is the kid stealing the gun and taking it into school.
http://bearingarms.com/crazed-gun-control-cultist-calls-children-steal-parents-firearms-bring-schools/?utm_source=thdaily&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=nl&newsletterad=

Anonymous bob k. mando December 22, 2014 3:11 PM  

see, now if Mar(ia)ston wanted to insult our literary taste, he'd slime Wright.

John is as near to a unanimous book endorsement as you're likely to get from the Ilk. even Vox prefers John's work to his own.

claiming Vox was disappointed not to win an award when Vox doesn't consider himself even close to being the best writer at his own publishing company ... sheesh.

i tell you what, there ain't no fixing stupid.

Anonymous jd December 22, 2014 4:04 PM  

Whatever happened to Bruce Bethke and Stupendous Stories?

Anonymous praetorian December 22, 2014 4:05 PM  

I just finished this book. I don't have it handy, but in one of the stories the heroine started talking about her groom turning into a dinosaur.

I thought that story was not very interesting to me (unlike most of the rest of them) but was I correct in interpreting as a rework of "If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love?"

If so, even Mr. Wrights immense talents were unable to save the concept. Unless it was a joke. In which case I will now lul.

"Yes, Virgina" punched me repeatedly in the feels.

Anonymous praetorian December 22, 2014 4:09 PM  

And he looks up higher and sees someone is already discussing it, and shuts himself up.

Anonymous bob k. mando December 22, 2014 6:06 PM  

jd December 22, 2014 4:04 PM
Whatever happened to Bruce Bethke and Stupendous Stories?



"stupefying".

http://stupefyingstories.blogspot.com/

Anonymous bob k. mando December 22, 2014 6:09 PM  

jd December 22, 2014 4:04 PM
Whatever happened to Bruce Bethke and Stupendous Stories?



"stupefying".

http://stupefyingstories.blogspot.com/

OpenID simplytimothy December 22, 2014 8:12 PM  

http://stupidstories.wordpress.com/
http://stupendousstories.wordpress.com/

http://stupidstories.blogspot.com/
http://stupendousstories.blogspot.com/


Anonymous jd December 22, 2014 8:53 PM  

Thanks guys.
Strange that there are no links to him or the site as there used to be.

Blogger John Wright December 22, 2014 9:11 PM  

"If so, even Mr. Wrights immense talents were unable to save the concept. "

Alas! Your criticism is one with which I cannot argue. I only will confess that I was watching this video when I wrote that story, and perhaps it influenced me:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UjKQg-2-y3U&list=PLTDQcMDl-5L1fl0sHhrS8HVJxTHmVq3u3&index=2

Anonymous maniacprovost December 22, 2014 9:25 PM  

There aren't many good dino-centric works out there. I'd say The Lost World comes close, but not close enough. Unless I missed some subtextual elements as I was learning to read.

Anonymous Viidad December 22, 2014 10:04 PM  

Gotta say it on dinosaurs: Crichton's Jurassic Park was fantastic. The movie lost the depth and added the silly.

Blogger LP 999/Eliza December 22, 2014 11:49 PM  

Aint this grander? This is way cooler than some of the subject matter of the malcontented rabbity, stalky nutcases that had to be covered this week.

Blogger LP 999/Eliza December 22, 2014 11:50 PM  

I know no one cares but Dark Souls 2 is so fine that it features its own extensive NPC dragon and dinosaur section.

Anonymous praetorian December 23, 2014 3:00 AM  

@MrWright Madness

Anonymous Dr. J December 23, 2014 9:17 AM  

I only will confess that I was watching this video when I wrote that story, and perhaps it influenced me

See, now that's funny.

Blogger JG December 23, 2014 9:56 AM  

I haven't finished everything in the book yet, but I like a lot of it. 'Pale Realms of Shade' is magnificent, haven't gotten to some of the other stories that people are saying are the best.

Concur with the posted reviewer's gripe on typos. I will submit more errors I find eventually once I finish RTRH, haven't had the time past couple of weeks.

Have to agree with the gripes about the lizards story. I actually really liked the beginning of the story, but was disappointed when it turned into the dino-revenge-porn parody-homage. I read it originally on Wright's blog, and was very surprised that it got included in this book. Or maybe 'disappointed' is a better word. I don't see the utility of parodying a work that is already so bad that it counts as its own parody. Or, for that matter, writing an homage-parody to such a work.

Anonymous Homesteader December 23, 2014 4:58 PM  

Spoiler Alert:

Queen of the Tyrant Lizards//If You Were a Dinosaur, my Love. The chapel scene...

The association detracts, and is involuntary. Knowledge of the existence of the latter poisons the ground for the former, as it were.

The story itself ends quite poignantly.

On to the next tale..

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