Monday, June 29, 2009

Review: Bones of the Dragon: Dragonships of Vindras by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman

The dynamic duo of Dragonlance and the Death Gate cycle are back together again but with 50% more Vikings! Bones of the Dragon's cast of characters is obviously styled after the Nordic tradition which I find entertaining as who doesn't like a good Vikingish tale.

Publisher's Summary

Skylan Ivorson is a sea-raider of the Vindras, an undefeated champion of the Torgun clan, and eventually the Chief of Chiefs of all Vindras clans, an honor he truly feels he deserves as one who has been blessed by Skoval, the god of war. But sometimes a blessing is a curse in disguise.

Skoval and the other ancient gods are under siege from a new generation of gods who are challenging them for the powers of creation.... and the only way to stop these brash interlopers lies within the mysterious and hidden Five Bones of the Vektan Dragons.

It will be up to the Vindras, the dragon-goddess's champion, to undertake the quest to recover all Five. The fate of the Old Gods and the Vindras' people rests on their recovery, for this is not only a quest to save the world - it is also a quest for redemption.

Filled with heroes and heroines young and old (as well as human and non-human), spanning locales of exotic adventure in a magic-forged world, this is a series that fully illustrates the mastery of world-building and storytelling that has made Weis and Hickman into the best-selling fantasy co-authors of all time.


Of the early reviews of this book most mixed to negative it seemed. In general I found the book pretty entertaining. I liked the setting and the Norsey feel of the place. My major complaint pertains to the main character Skylan. Now I know the big thing these days is to have a flawed hero and if the main hero of a fantasy novel is just a good guy fighting evil and triumphing over great odds the book will be ravaged by the vengence seeking fandom. But as written Skylan is both an idiot and an ass and the constant thought of "well now he can't be that stupid can he" kept pulling me out of my enjoyment of the story. That said it has the possiblity of going on to be a world(s) hopping adventure like Death Gate which I'd really like to see but unless the character of Skylan is given a mental upgrade I can't see wanting to follow too far.


Again since I listened to it on Audiobook I'll give a thought on that front. I thinkStefan Rudnicki does an above avarage job of reading this story. Doesn't make me like Skylan any more though.

The road to hell is paved...

with nothing apparently as I haven't posted again for months. Reviews to follow I promise.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Catching up

Soooo... what have I been doing for the last year? Well besides the before mentioned life duties I have managed to squeeze in some reading and listening, just not a whole lot of writing. So lets see what I did get to.

Reading well I masochistically decided to read some old Dungeons & Dragons based novels to see if they are as bad as I thought they'd be. I read the Icewind Dale Trilogy by R.A. Salvatore. Not horrible but obviously written as if it were a campaign journal from a D&D campaign. I've also read the first two books and am finishing the third of Douglas Niles' Moonshae trilogy. This trilogy feels a little more like a story than a game recap but still not exactly Hugo material. Also read the City of Towers the first novel in the Eberron setting. Again readable and somewhat enjoyable.

Listening: Haven't done as much of this as I'd have liked. I listened the the Chronicles of Narnia. Since they started making the movies I thought I should at least know of them. Pretty decent young adult fare, can't believe I didn't read them when I was younger. I also listened to the first three books of Ursula K. Le Guin's Earthsea cycle and thought they were wonderful. The writing is so evocative that it paints clearly on the minds canvas, even when sitting in traffic). Since they are audiobooks I should comment on the narrators as well. "A Wizard of Earthsea " was narrated by Harlan Ellison who I did not care for one bit and manage to detract something from the inherent beauty of the written narrative. The The Tombs of Atuan was read by Gabrielle DeCuir and was considerably better than Ellison's reading. The The Farthest Shore was read by Scott Brick, enough said. (Just in case it isn't enough said, Scott Brick is fantastic).

Enough of an update for now but I will have a few more things to add later.

Oh where has the time gone

I'd love to say I was in a coma the last year or so or perhaps on a top secret government mission but I haven't been. I mostly been working, playing and trying to raise two young kids. So time to read started to dwindle and listening time in the car for audio books dwindled as well as I didn't want my four year old listening to most of what I was listening to. In that time there was little to write and so the blog fell by the wayside and for that I'm sorry.

Well anyways I'm going to take another run at it and hopefully my attempt and blog rebirth isn't snuffed out by piles of poopy diapers.