Well, we reached the end of another month in 2020. I’m still here, and I sincerely hope you’re all doing whatever you can to get yourselves through this … very, very strange time we’re now living in.
But let’s not get into that here, today. Today, I’m here to round up what was a very stop-start-surprise!binge sort of month, reading-wise. Then we can finally turn our attention toward the third annual Wyrd and Wonder celebration of fantasy!
Top Ten Tuesday
In which I come up with some book titles that would make good band names – and stay tuned for a possible sequel to this list, given how much fun I had writing up the first one…
Dawnspell, the third book in this series, has now been devoured, in true book-dragon style. The review will be forthcoming as part of my Wyrd and Wonder line-up, assuming of course that I can get my many (many) thoughts into coherent order and down on the page! Watch out for that in May, as well as any tweetable thoughts on Dragonspell just as soon as I get my hands on a copy!
(Please let there be actual dragons.)
I began this project in truly epic fashion, by revisiting Brandon Sanderson’s Stormlight Archive and rereading The Way of Kings. I had forgotten how impressive this book was! The worldbuilding and magic system are deeply fascinating, and the impressiveness wasn’t all that I forgot about – a lot of the plot twists and turns had apparently slipped through the mental cracks as well, which made revisiting this book a lot of fun.
I’ll be continuing my reread with Words of Radiance just as soon as I can order a copy of the US paperback, because apparently I read it on Kindle the first time around that simply won’t do. I want a physical copy in my hands, and no offense to the UK cover art but it’s just not as pretty to me…
… Wow, it’s been a while since I reported on our D&D party’s shenanigans, hasn’t it. Let’s see…
OK, so last time I did this, Team Crowbar had just discovered the scene of a very puzzling explodey incident, and taken a prisoner at said scene. Oops?
Well, we ended up adopting the prisoner. Sort of. His name is Ro’shu, he is terrified of our tiny halfling bard because his people consider books and writing to be Very Taboo, and it turned out his own people were practically enslaving him so naturally my paladin has (cautiously) taken him under her wing. And that had nothing to do with her father making her responsible for him to teach her a lesson about Not Interfering Across Enemy Borders.
Kids these days.
Since then, they’ve gone on another Odakar (militia) mission to check on a nearby village – since winter arrived and heavy snow has fallen, they haven’t been heard from. I’m sure that’s all fine and they’re all fine.
Anyway, on the way there they decided to snoop around a little in the Sacred Wood. You know, the one where the locals are discouraged from leaving the marked path because Bad Things Happen in those woods when you go wandering off. And hey, guess what we did!
We found people living there. And more besides. They have a very secret existence, and a devout purpose that involves protecting outsiders from what’s buried deep beneath the Sacred Wood. Turns out the wood is sacred because there’s a sleeping Goddess buried there, only she is being KEPT ASLEEP because she was last known to be very angry and murdery toward the people who came along and tried to claim her land in the name of their own gods. So the original inhabitants, the ones who were on her side, are now survived by the people who live hidden away in the Sacred Wood and they’ve been keeping their Goddess asleep for the sake of the lives of everyone living in the valley beyond.
Only now my paladin, who is the local valley lord’s daughter and probably soon to be his heir (politics, yo), has apparently been gifted her power by an offspring of this Goddess – one that the woodfolk thought had been destroyed. Surprise! And this makes Naivara the first outsider to ever have been given the gift of this power, which is making everyone stop and think.
Also very surprising to everyone was the fact that, apparently, our bard’s mother was one of them! Only she ran off at some point before Libby was born so nobody there knew she’d ever had a baby. (Even Libby doesn’t know her – she was raised by two dads, which made every other player incredibly happy to hear).
But they accepted her (after the swearing of some oaths to secrecy), and there was a celebration, and our cleric got Very Drunk and that was hilarious. But the morning after is no doubt going to bring the need for serious reflection.
Me, I think this means that the time for separation and secrecy might be coming to an end, regardless of whatever oaths the party has sworn on the matter. I am quite sure nobody wants a murderous Goddess going on a rampage, but if she does we are all going to need all the help we can get.
Naivara, however, is more confused than she was before she went into the woods in the first place. A politician, she is not – but can she learn to be one?
And will she ever admit that she’s got a crush on their cleric?
What else is there?
What I read this month:
- Upright Women Wanted by Sarah Gailey – 5/5
- The Impossible Contract (Chronicles of Ghadid #2) by K.A. Doore – 5/5
- The Library of the Unwritten by A.J. Hackwith – 5/5
That’s a very pleasing uptick in reading progress, if you ask me! Go forth and read all of these, if you haven’t already. I love a good reading binge, and I love it even more when I read absolute gems like these during one!
That time of year is almost upon us again! We’re holding steady in the participation levels, which is immensely pleasing and I want to just take a moment here to thank everybody who’s returning for another round, and also everyone who’s new to it this year! I hope you all have a wonderful time celebrating fantasy with us, and I can’t wait to see what treasures we uncover and share. Bring it on!
A quick recap on links/more info:
- imyril has the goods on how to sign up, what goodies you might win by doing so, and more on what to expect from us in May!
- I’m running this year’s Wyrd and Wonder Readalong solo for the first time! We’ll be reading Katherine Addison’s The Goblin Emperor, and you can find the schedule over here.
- And here’s a Readalong banner, courtesy of imyril!
- Not only that, but this year I intend to stick to a proper reading list (haha yeah right…) – check it out here!
One Last Thing
If you’ve enjoyed any of the content I post and would like to show support/help me continue to be a massive book nerd/assist me in keeping the lights on at the Geekhaus, I have a Ko-fi account you can drop a few (entirely voluntary!) quid into, with my eternal thanks!