Book review – The Sorcerer’s House

Title: The Sorcerer’s House
Author: Gene Wolfe
Genre: Fantasy
Rating

At first I was a bit surprised, reading this book. The form in which it is written is quite unusual (I shall refrain from what it is, that’s something for you to discover), but once I had gotten used to it, I loved the idea. And getting used to the format was quite easy, I should add.

Baxter Dunn, a man freshly released from prison, suddenly finds himself in a plenitude of strange happenings in the small town of Medicine Man where he occupies a simple hotel room. Puzzled, he ventures on, meeting people who help him understand more and more of what is going on, but at the same time these people (are all of them people?) often manage to add to the confusion.

Bax, as he is known to friends, learns a lot about his past and his family in this story which is permeated with magic and interesting creatures, the more the tale progresses.

I was however slightly disappointed by the manner that Mr. Wolfe ended the story. It was as if he had lost interest and wanted to put the story to an end rather quickly. This could have been done in a much more elaborate and satisfying way. For this reason I gave the book 4 stars instead of 5.

A large and mysterious house, a slender fox, a fascinating twin and quite the remarkable butler are wonderful characters and locations in this book. I dare say these are the ingredients for a recommended read for people who like fantasy, magic and the occasional puzzle.

You can find The Sorcerer’s House in print at Amazon.com and as e-book at KoboBooks.com.

A Dance With Dragons

Welcome, dear reader.

Something about reading this time, instead of writing. Because yes, I read as well, be it not as much as I would like to. This is however to blame on the limit of 24 hours in a day.

I finished reading A Dance With Dragons, by George R. R. Martin. (link to Hardcover, link to e-book).

It’s been a long wait for the fans of Mr. Martin’s bestselling series Game of Thrones. Over 10 years he had promised that the book would be finished soon, although the ‘soon’ became less and less mentioned.

It is a magnificent book. We meet many of the characters again that have become so familiar in the first four books. A lot of background is brought to the surface, many things, plans and reasons from the previous plots and plans become clear. Or at least clearer. And many new facesare coming into the arena as well, each one with their own desires and faults.

There are dramatic turns in the story, something that Mr. Martin is very good at. And staying true to another part of himself, he still is not very kind to his characters. Many if not all of them are put through quite a stack of bad news and rough situations. The story grabbed me by the eyes and did not want to let go, and with good reason.

An excellent read, I can highly recommend it. The way Mr. Martin mixes the fantasy elements into the story is fabulous. There are all kinds of fantasy elements present, but they do not take the overhand. First there are the people and their adventures good or bad, and the “magic” of fantasy is woven into the words in a modest way. Perhaps that is what makes the story so good.

Book review – The Last Page

Title: The Last Page
Author: Anthony Huso
Genre: Steampunk
Rating

Anthony Huso paints a very fascinating world in which royalty faces all kinds of challenges including a war, while alchemy and witchcraft (called holomorphy in this story) take an important place in the story.

During the first chapters I had a hard time staying focussed on the story, but once I got past that hurdle, the story pulled me into a vibrant world with intrigue, hidden agendas, dirigibles and myth. Rebels and a “love you, love you not” game made the book a very nice experience for me, which fed me with ideas for future stories as well.

The setting of the story is laid out very nicely, with plenty of space for personal interpretation of many things. The technology and other matters devised are good and in many ways refreshing and new. (For me.)