keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
The Will of the Empress
by Tamora Pierce
550 pages (trade paperback)
Genre: Fiction/Fantasy/YA

My second read-through, since I have a policy of reading all purchased books and I bought this one at Tammy's book signing during Alpha. Despite the oft-cited drawbacks of her novels--mainly the strong YA slant in depth of development--I foresee turning to this again as comfort reading. The prose is utilitarian and the good/evil conflict is rather starkly painted, but Pierce's characters are compelling (if a bit Mary-Sue-ish at times, though it didn't bother me). Politics abound: Sandry is summoned to the Empire of Namorn, her homeland, by her imperial cousin Berenene. Daja, Tris, and Briar accompany her, but after all their multifarious travels, the foursome could really use some extra bonding.

On a technical level, flaws are easily pointed out in this novel. The omniscient POV and obvious foreshadowing is jarring; the ending is very neat yet certain plot issues--are ambient mages always more powerful than mere academic ones?--leave more to be desired. However, I think that The Will of the Empress, like so much of Pierce's work, succeeds purely on a intuitive level. I couldn't put this book down, even though it was a reread. Of course, I've always had a soft spot for Sandry, and I absolutely can't wait for the Tris-goes-to-Lightsbridge novel.

Tentatively recommended to select Pierce fans, if you like politics and/or Sandry.
keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
Listening to Tammy's lecture right now. She's talking about how she thinks of characters, by remaking all the people and pets around her. Apparently Kyprioth in the Trickster's series was based off Bruce Coville. But Kyprioth does something in Trickster's Queen that made his human incarnation rather angry, and I can't remember what the something was!

Other interesting ones are her first boyfriend as Lord Roger (Song of the Lioness) and her friend's pet dove as the griffin in Protector of the Small.

And the discussion is bringing back good memories about various of Tammy's books. Now I want to reread The Will of the Empress, which I just bought and got signed yesterday. But I have Tigana and The Quantum Rose to savor, and I need to finish Maledicte before the end of Alpha. I'm only a few pages in. Looked through Interfictions and it looks interesting, but not fascinating. That's iffy.
keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (panda)
I devoured Twilight, by Stephenie Meyer, and today I just finished the sequel New Moon. The ending sets up another book, so that should be good. Might post a review of Dial L for Loser later, the latest book in the Clique series by Lisi Harrison that is, well, horrible in places. But Harrison does get a few parts right, and they're really thin, light reads.

Note to self: Buy Micron pen for Tian and chip in to buy Sharon Prismacolor pencils!

And on with my main reason for posting, since I'm sure life issues utterly bore anyone who might bother to read this (not that I won't post about them, if I get desperate):

Beka Cooper: Terrier )

I'm pretty sure that my annoyance with whoever wrote the summary copy (it definitely wasn't Pierce, whose style is always excellent) weren't a good sign, but overall the book is decent. Not outstanding, but decent. I can't help comparing Terrier to Twilight--both have strong prose, engaging characters, and moving plot, but Twilight affected me emotionally much more. I could actually feel, imagine Bella's horrific emotional pain and her fear of Edward leaving her. It was very powerful.

Cross-posted to [ profile] scifantasybooks. Apologies if the coding is messed up, I forgot how to link comms.


keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)

January 2011



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