Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Fantasy in ad hoc mode

kw: opinion, book note, fantasy

Once I finished reading White Night by Jim Butcher, I realized I just couldn't review it. The narrative is gripping enough, but the undercurrent of sadism easily matches anything I remember from reading my mother's collection of James Bond thrillers four-plus decades ago. The level of abuse the protagonist absorbs just getting to the end of the three-day story frame is, well, fantastic.

While there is a bit of lip service paid to rules and realms of magical arts, the fact is, every crisis is answered by another total surprise on the reader's part. This necessitates whole chapters of explainery. I found myself skimming hard to "get back to the story." Oh, well.

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