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The Blade Itself: A Bloody Good Read

Despite being one of the most over-saturated genres in fiction, fantasy action-adventure novels have always been my favorite kind of book. High or low, light or dark, familiar or wildly original, well-written fantasy stands to me as one of the most enjoyable things in any given bookstore. Dark “low” fantasy novels have become fairly popular […]

The Night Circus: The Magic Is In The Details

The Night Circus, by Erin Morgenstern, is not the kind of book I might normally have chosen on my own, but in seeking a good book to bring me down from a long cycle of short story compilations I had been stuck on recently, it provided a welcome return to the true novel format and […]

Airman: In Which Eoin Colfer Proves Alternate History Fantasy Does Not Need to be Complex

Eoin Colfer’s been a young adult author I’ve always had something of a soft spot for, even though I have not yet read a book of his that can’t be finished in an afternoon or so if you focus on it. His writing is apparently not the New York Times Bestseller-crack Rick Riordan has managed […]

Scott Pilgrim: The Second Most Awesome Canadian in Comics

Bryan Lee O’Malley’s Scott Pilgrim series is one of the most uniquely quirky and incredibly awesome sets of graphic novels I have ever read. A strangely well-balanced blend of over-the-top video game-style violence and humor with a romantic slacker comedy, Scott Pilgrim can keep you interested and amused even if you’re not familiar with video […]

Catherine Fisher’s Incarceron: Worldbuilding vs. Character Building

Any young writer learning about their craft will discover fairly early on the dichotomy between plot-driven storytelling and character-driven storytelling. In the former, the story and its characters are moved along by the plot; things happen and the characters do things because the author needs it to go that way for the story they’re telling. […]

Graceling: Graced In Ideas, Not In Subtlety

Despite being a college graduate, I still consider myself a young adult; despite the legal status of an adult once you’ve passed age 21, and the higher-priced movie tickets that came before that, I doubt I’ll consider myself a true grown man until I’m 30 or so. As such, I still take an interest in […]

Review for Dan Brown’s “The Lost Symbol”

Dan Brown is the sort of writer who barely seems to need any kind of introduction in this day and age. Renowned in some circles, reviled in others, Dan Brown is a very successful but controversial author well known for his ancient history-based conspiracy page-turners. Despite heavy criticism for his use of artistic license on […]

Breaking Dawn: Breaking Wind, Breaking Minds – Part Two

Eventually, I had the courage to resume as the book shifts back to Bella’s perspective, and she goes through the agonizing transformation into a vampire before awakening, her senses sharper than ever and her alleged physical plainness and clumsiness gone for good, now just as implausibly attractive and powerful as other Meyerpires. Of course, as […]

Breaking Dawn: Breaking Wind, Breaking Minds – Part One

By this point in my reviews of the Twilight Saga, it should be well-established that I feel the series got steadily worse with each successive book. As the bad-but-not-terrible Twilight was the absolute pinnacle of the series to start the saga out with a  “meh”, so Breaking Dawn must be the absolute nadir of the […]

Eclipse: Dastardly Dueling Dirtbags Dully Debate Deserving Dopey Distressed Damsel

While reading Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight series, I expressed my annoyance to my sister that Meyer repeatedly avoided having any interesting conflict come up except for an easily-resolved issue towards the end, and how all the vampire slaying has happened offscreen. My sister told me that if I wanted to see action, Eclipse would be the […]