Oh so that’s what’s bugging me

xhss9So I’m reading this book right now.  It’s the third book in a series that I think is going to be seven or ten books long, it’s 1200 fucking pages long, and the two books before it were both also over a thousand pages long.  I started it right around the first of the year and I’m barely a quarter of the way through the thing.  I feel like I sailed through the first two, and I really enjoyed reading them.  That said, it’s been a while, and I read so much that my recall is not always great.  At first, I thought that was the reason that this book felt like a slog– that I just didn’t remember the story well enough from the previous books and it was holding me back.

There really shoulda been a goddamn recap chapter in the front.  I mean, shit, your book is already twelve hundred pages long, maybe you give me another 15 to recap the previous 2200 pages in the other two books?  It’d be nice.

Something hit me about this book last night.  The big conflict in this one (so far) appears to be that the race (fantasy book, remember, so literal non-human race) that humans have basically been using as slaves since time immemorial have, for lack of a better word, woken up.  They were basically big strong mute servants until recently and now they’ve got their minds back.  And they are, rather understandably, somewhat pissed about the whole centuries of slavery thing, and so there’s a bit of Kill!  All!  Humans! going on out there.

The book expects me to be on the side of the humans in this conflict.  All of the main characters are human.  There’s been at least one, maybe two POV characters from the other side in previous books but he’s either dead or just hasn’t shown up; I literally don’t remember.

I am not on the side of the humans in this conflict.

There are hints that one character is going to take the side of the newly-awakened slave race, but those same hints imply that he is going to lead them, and I kinda don’t feel like a white savior narrative is going to improve this book any.

Oh, and the series has always explicitly associated blue eyes with social status, which I was willing to ignore the implications of previously but now is kinda looking upsetting given recent developments.  Like, characters’ eyes literally change color to blue if they achieve certain abilities.

So right now I’m at war, with my 2500-page investment along with a healthy dose of “give the rest of the book a chance; this may not work out the way it seems like it’s going to” on the one hand, and literally ten other books that I’d like to start reading and nine hundred more pages of this one to slog through on the other.

Feel free to provide advice if you’d like.

(Also: I’m not a hundred percent sure why I’m effectively subtweeting the actual book here; my Goodreads feed isn’t exactly a hidden thing.  But that’s how the post came out.  I dunno.)

6 thoughts on “Oh so that’s what’s bugging me

  1. I’m really sick of the 1k+ books, especially when they forget about the forward movement of the story – now I read a section at the beginning, a section at the middle and a section about 10% of the way in from the end – if it’s not compelling, back it goes. Off the list of TBR.

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  2. 1 – Life’s too short to use up hours with books that don’t do it for you.
    2 – if you’re thinking of things you ‘ought’a’ or ‘should’ or ‘rather’ be doing while you’re reading the book, then see #1

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  3. Yeah, that’s troubling. It’s kind of the same problem I have with the movie “The Searchers”: the whole plot is predicated on siding with the white man against the savage Indians (the word itself reminds us people weren’t any smarter or wiser in the past). I guess if you saw it at the right time and can get in the right mindset, then yeah, I’m sure it’s a great movie, but damn if I couldn’t.

    Nonetheless, I sometimes think I should try to get in the heads of people I disagree with on a fundamental level to understand their perspective, and reading seems to be a way that involves less yelling and punching their stupid faces. Unfortunately, I don’t seem to have the stomach for it.

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