This month I tried two new fantasy series: The Chronicles of Prydain by Lloyd Alexander and Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling. I only read one of the Chronicles of Prydain (The Book of Three, #1, though I did get pretty far into The High King) and only the first three and last Harry Potter books (The Sorcerer’s Stone, The Chamber of Secrets, and The Prisoner of Azkaban, and The Deathly Hallows). Surprisingly, I liked Harry Potter significantly more; The Book of Three was pretty bad, and though I didn’t care very much for the first three Harry Potter books, the last one was definitely one of my favorite reads of this year. (I’m still raving about it two weeks after I finished it, so I think I’ll just have to do a full post about what I thought of it.)
But about The Book of Three… that was such a let-down. I had always heard that it was so wonderful, but it was really awful. All that I really saw in it was melodramatic and frustrating dialogue, Tolkien rip-offs, cheesy and cliched characters, and a boring and plot-hole-filled storyline (I’m sorry if I’m being harsh, but I was really that disappointed). We never saw any character growth or development, but were told that the main characters were annoying and headstrong at the beginning of the book and were less annoying and less headstrong at the end.
The biggest surprise of this month by far was Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell. I saw the 1939 movie for the first time a few years ago, and did not care much for it then, but re-watched more recently (last year) and liked it well enough this time. So I finally got around to reading the book, not expecting much, but it surprised me, in a good way. There were, of course, many things that I disliked about it, but again I’ll do a post all about it sometime in October.
I also read a few non-fiction books, and several short stories, but those aren’t really worth talking about. And I mean that in the least-offensive way to the authors of those books.They were not bad books, of course, but I simply have nothing to say on the subject.
Have you read the Prydain series, and does it get better later on? And do you readers have any book recommendations for October?
I published eight posts this month on Learned in the Lore (not counting this one)! That’s a little more than my originally planned one-post-a-week thing, but whatever. I doubt that I’ll have quite as many next month, since I already have a lot planned for October, but we’ll see.
One more thing on the subject of blog posts: so I can know what kinds of posts you readers enjoy the most and do more of those kind, please take this poll: