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November 22, 2009


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Her others do not follow that plotline, although McKinley has a recognizable authorial voice. I read Sunshine because I adore McKinley; I enjoyed it, but I'll never reread it because of the whole vampire thing. Chalice is otherwise my least-favorite of her novels. The bees bothered me a whole lot, too.

McKinley and Peter Dickinson (to whom she is married) have a new collection of short stories out: Fire: Tales of Elemental Spirits. Coincidentally, I read that yesterday, and thoroughly enjoyed it.

After I'm done with Vance's Tales of the Dying Earth, I'm planning to finally read the anthology Ravens in the Library.

About story similarities... Back in the early 1990s, I was reading a story in one SF magazine when I stopped dead in my tracks and asked myself "Didn't I already read that specific story of unicorns showing up on the set of a porno film?" It turned out that, no, the author had not sold the same story twice, but that, within a few months of each other, two separate authors had come up with the same story.

I haven't read Chalice or Sunshine, but I've read Deerskin, which is very different, and Spindle's End. I own Dragonhaven but haven't read it yet.

Mary Aleen,
I'm pretty sure I've read a few other of her novels; I'd have to check my shelves. But none of them really grabbed me the way Sunshine did. Since Chalice was a mild letdown (though not a bad book) I probably won't be as quick to grab others of hers in the future.

I still haven't read Ravens. Gah. And I also have a pair of books published about ten years apart that are weirdly similar in setting, character, and plotlines. I will try to blog about this in December.

A pair of books published about ten years apart that are weirdly similar in setting, character, and plotlines: Groosham Grange (1988) by Anthony Horowitz, and Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (1997) by J. K. Rowling.

Thanks for the review -- it reminded me of what I liked about this book. (my poor, poor memory -- I didn't even remember the really important detail of Chalice==bees!)

Well, in spite of my initial reactions, I have come to the conclusion that Vance and I are not made for each other, and Tales of the Dying Earth will remain unfinished by yours truly. It's nothing to do with the quality of the writing. Something about the whole thing's sensibilities rubs me the wrong way. In other words, not only does it not push my like button, but it pushes my do-not-like button.

Meanwhile, I have begun rerading Ravens in the Library, and Gaiman's "Forbidden Brides of the Faceless Slaves in the Nameless House of the Night of Dread Desire" had me smiling.

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