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Fantasy is a genre of art that uses magic and other supernatural forms as a primary element of plot, theme, or setting. The genre is generally distinguished from science fiction and horror by overall look, feel, and theme of the individual work, though there is a great deal of overlap between the three (collectively known as speculative fiction). In its broadest sense, fantasy comprises works by many writers, artists, filmmakers, and musicians, from ancient myths and legends to many recent works embraced by a wide audience today.

Book review: King Killer Chronicles, Day One by Patrick Rothfuss


the cover of the book

Cover

From a distance, it's not too bad. The shadowed, hooded figure is suitably mysterious - there's no indication of a hero or villain, and he appears to be bleeding from the eyes. The foiled copper text is appropriately twiddly, but at least avoids cheesy medievalisation. Likewise, the image, though not surprising, lacks the standard "tiny-figures-'gainst-an-epic-panorama" that makes every fantasy book published since 1981 look exactly the same. Bring back the nude chicks with swords, I say, just before they throw me out of the pub. Pricks. Regardless, close inspection is a bit less favourable. The image is simply a crude collage - you could knock it up in Photoshop in an afternoon. The foliage framing the central image appears in different resolutions simultaneously, there's only one leaf repeated a dozen times, and, as we learn in the first 2 pages of the text, the blood is supposed to be hair. Red hair, yes, but accidentally making the cover look like more Stephen King than Tolkein is really not something an "artist" should do. Goodkind's last books were a bit like this, too. What's going on? Doesn't anyone want to pay painters for beautiful, ornate wrap-arounds any more? Curse you, Photoshop! How many lives must you ruin!!!!!?!!!?

Book review: Confessor by Terry Goodkind


the cover of the book

If this was the final episode of a TV show, it would definitely be Friends - wrinkled characters, an apathetic audience departing mid-show, and plotting you'd have seen already even if you hadn't seen it already.

Book review: Zeppelins West by Joe R. Lansdale


the cover of the book

If this was a comic which is about a thousand times better, it would be The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen.

Book review: Twilight by Stephanie Meyer


the cover of the book

What if Joss Whedon wrote like an 8 yr old, Buffy was a petulant, crying moron and Angel was her self flagellating bitch? Stephanie Meyer would be $70 million poorer, that’s what.

Book review: Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman


the cover of the book

Neverwhere is a whimsical tale about a man called Richard, doors, rats, myths, and what really happens underneath London.

Book review: Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling



Here it is, the moment thousands of eager adults and children alike have been awaiting for the last seven or so years... the conclusion of the Harry Potter story. Avid fans and even just mildly interested parents have followed Harry and co through the trials and tribulations of being "the boy who lived"... and the question on everybody's lips is, does he?

Book review: Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling



Here it is, the moment thousands of eager adults and children alike have been awaiting for the last seven or so years... the conclusion of the Harry Potter story. Avid fans and even just mildly interested parents have followed Harry and co through the trials and tribulations of being "the boy who lived"... and the question on everybody's lips is, does he?

Book review: Wintersmith by Terry Pratchett



If this was a movie, it would be Harry Potter And The Logic Of The Diminishing Returns.

Book review: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling



Y’know how Bridget writes intelligent, insightful book reviews? Well, I don’t. I’m barely literate.

Book review: Harry Potter And The Chamber of Secrets by J. K. Rowling



Ah, Harry Potter the second. With such a favourable impression left upon me by the first one, of course I had to read the second one. And by the time the second one was out in Australia, Harry Potter fever had begun and everybody wanted a copy. It was make or break time—could she do it again? Or was she just a one-trick-Harry-Potter pony? And I don’t think there were many disappointed people out there with Harry Potter And The Chamber of Secrets—Harry and his friends, on another dazzling adventure just as thrilling as the last.

Book review: Harry Potter And The Philosopher's Stone by J. K. Rowling



Ah, Harry Potter. In this case, I want to state that I read this little number hot off the press before Harry became the blistering sensation that he is today, with his appalling hair and several movies and whatnot. I was right there in the thick of things, and I remember two girls pointing and snickering at my reading a children’s book on the train. I remember reading it and thinking “Well she isn’t Roald Dahl, but she’s pretty close...”. Anyway, when Harry Potter And The Philosopher’s Stone first hit the shelves in 1997, I think everybody was wondering whether Harry was just going to be a flash in the pan or if J.K. Rowling had the makings of a classic on her hands. I think that now, we all know the answer to that. And I don’t think her reputation is undeserved. (I think she produced the fifth book on a bad day, but I’ll save that for another review.)

Book review: Phantom by Terry Goodkind



If this was a pair of pants, it would be brown leather riding trews, brutally polished but artfully worn, suitably antique in cut yet of no obvious period, comfortable enough in the saddle but far FAR too implicative for casual wear.

Book review: The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R Tolkien



This book—or to be more precise, this trilogy—is number two in Angus and Robertson’s top one hundred, having been cheated out of the top spot by that appalling Da Vinci Code business. And, while I wouldn’t say J.R.R Tolkien’s meandering and fairly time-intensive classics are the best books in the world, they sure have stood the test of time. The fact that they are referred to pretty much undisputedly as “classics” gives that away. The publisher on this lot is Harper Collins, and if I’d snapped up this baby as a publisher I’d be laughing all the way to the bank! I don’t think there are many people in the developed world who haven’t heard of The Lord of the Rings, be it movies, books, cartoons, other references... and you have to respect Tolkien for that.

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