Friday, July 15, 2011

Now That Harry is Done, Read Something Else

OK people - I like Harry Potter, as I think I demonstrated yesterday, but I am getting a little tired of all the stories on the radio and interwebs about how this is the end of childhood, the end of an era, oh noes whatever will we do?! The books aren't going to suddenly disappear from the earth, neither are the movies (I mean, it isn't like they are the instructions for how to get to the moon, which NASA got rid of at some point - true story, heard it from a college astronomy professor who had worked for NASA). Ypu can go back and re-read and re-watch them. Use them as your madeleine to remember childhood, instead of mourning its passing. And move on, find something else to read and love. Need some help in that department? Good thing I am a voracious, omnivorous bibliovore, and a librarian to boot. I have suggestions aplenty.
  • The Abhorson Trilogy (maybe one day to be more) by Garth Nix: It has magic (more clearly thought out and explained than the magic of HP), a couple of great female protagonists - both of whom have to grow into their roles as saviors much like HP, a talking magic cat (who is way more than he seems) and a talking magic dog (also way more than she seems), conflicts between good and evil with several very nasty big bads, and the juxtaposition of a a world where magic exists and one where it does not. One of my all-time favorite series. 
  • The Keys to the Kingdom series, also by Garth Nix: Written for a somewhat younger audience than the Abhorson Trilogy - Arthur in this series is 12, while Sabriel is 17 or 18 when Sabriel starts - the Keys to the Kingdom involve a sort of neo-Victorian alternate realm where certain kinds of magic work, but where things are falling apart and the decay is starting to affect Earth, or the Secondary Realm as it is called, and only Arthur can put things right. The problem? The more he manages to fix, the less human he will become.
  • The Pellinore Series by Alison Croggon: Magic is done by Bards who use their gifts to help the people and lands, but Bards are being attacked by the Nameless One. The main protagonist, Maerad, a slave at the beginning of the first book, is rescue by Cadvan, learns she is a Bard and finds that she must solve the riddle of the Tree-Song in order to save the world. Hilarity ensues (well, tribulations and adventures anyway). Another series with a well-thought out magic system, a complete backstory and  history, and an invented language. In some ways, a female version of the Lord of the Rings, but if you don't like Tolkein, don't let that keep you from this series.
  • The Mistborn Series by Brandon Sanderson: I have only read the first book in this series so far, but it was excellent. Benjamin has read everything by Sanderson (apart from the Wheel of Time books that he is finishing as Robert Jordan's appointed successor) and says that the rest of this series is awesome, especially if you like kick-ass women protagonists with magic powers. 
Had enough? Need more ideas? Sign up for Goodreads and take a look at my various bookshelves. I have 179 books on the Sci-Fi/Fantasy shelf alone that you might enjoy. I haven't even mentioned any of the steampunk series I love by Gail Carriger and Cherie Priest (her Southern Gothic series is pretty darn good too, as is her Cheshire Red Reports), or Shanna Swendson's Enchanted Inc series.

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