Thursday, May 7, 2009

Wise man's fear, indeed

Ah, the life of a fantasy novel fan. Finding the good stuff is hard; not running out of it is harder; waiting for the good stuff to come out is the hardest of all. I threatened to beat my good friend to death with a George R. R. Martin novel when I discovered that this doorstopper series he had highly recommended was not done yet. Robert Jordan fans had to deal with the biggest heartbreak of all, the author actually dying before the series is over. Last year, I stumbled across Patrick Rothfuss' acclaimed debut, In the Name of the Wind, the first of a trilogy, a compellingly narrated doorstop about an orphan (yeah, I know) of inhuman brilliance and power (yeah, yeah) and musical talent (kill me now) who enters a magical school (screams of anguish)... Fine. It does not summarize well, but when I first read it, I was blown away, and recommended it to the Martin friend.

Then it did not really stay with me. I wasn't compelled to reread it instantly, and I found myself forgetting large chunks of plot even as I remembered some turns of phrase so bleakly powerful that they were well worth the whole book. But I did recollect that book two had been scheduled to come out sometime around now, so I got the book out and reread it all today. Hm, I thought to myself, not without its problems and stereotypes, but really it was quite good, wasn't it... I merrily skipped over to my computer to find that the second book, The Wise Man's Fear, had disappeared from amazon. Completely.

Furious with amazon and their damn search system, I then googled, found the author's blog, and learned that... the release date was always a load of optimistic crap. The humorous and blunt blog post, which reminds me a little bit of Kevin Smith, goes a long way towards softening the blow. The book was not done as of February, and judging from the author's international signing schedule, it will not speedily issue forth anytime soon. I expect my friend to come beat me to death any day now.


Ben said...

Hi Heidi--

Rothfuss is #1 on my list of future pleasure reading, hopefully this summer at some point. I expect that conversation, rather than beatings, will be the subsequent result. But I'll keep you posted in any case!

It's more sci-fi than fantasy, I guess, but mainly just amazing story-telling on any level, and a completed series at that, so I highly recommend Tad Williams' Otherland series (four doorstoppers, but crazy good) if you haven't read those.


Heidi said...

Ha. Beatings, I'm telling you. I will check out the Williams!