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Archive for August, 2012

A few days (and drinks) later, Marie & I return to enthuse about Jane Yolen’s Pit Dragon Chronicles.

In summary: like Pokemon, if Pokemon was good.

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Marie’s Youtube Channel

Source of our Theme Song

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In an amazing turn of events, Marie & I are in the same place together, and although slightly buzzed, still manage to babble about Jo Walton’s Tooth and Claw.

Download the Podcast

Marie’s Youtube Channel

Source of our Theme Song (“It’s Dragon Tales” by Butterfly Tea.  Rather fitting this time, don’t you think?)

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I count myself extremely fortunate that only a few weeks after my (earth-shattering?) introduction to Jane Yolen I’ve come across yet another book I’ve utterly fallen in love with that’s not by Jane Yolen. I came across The Sorcerer’s Ship by Hans Bok completely by accident rather than by recommendation. After some rather disappointing encounters with two critically acclaimed fantasy novels I finally managed to get a hold of, I was at a loss for what to read next. I managed to dig through another box of freebies and found this title, a reprint in the famed Ballantine Adult Fantasy line edited by Lin Carter. For those not in the know, the series appeared in the 1970s following the success of The Lord of the Rings, mainly as a way to cash in on the American public’s newfound hunger for fantasy by reprinting older titles of interest. While Lin Carter was a horrific writer—what else can you call someone who thought “Thongor” was a smashing name for a hero?—he was an excellent editor with an almost freakish knowledge of fantasy literature, and he chose many great books that haven’t seen print since.

The Ballantine Adult Fantasy series is also known for its terrible, terrible covers. Observe:

So THAT’S how mermaids reproduce!

Almost nothing on the front or back of the book represents anything that happens in it. The artist, Ray Cruz, seems to only have had the title to work from. So, while the titular ship appears…it looks nothing like the ship in the novel, and the titular sorcerer is not a wizard in blue robes but, in fact, a lizard-man.

Sigh.

(more…)

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I’ve been know to snigger at fan fiction on occasion.  However, seeing as I’ve never written any, it seemed a tad bit unfair, and felt I owed Ralfast the benefit of the doubt.  So I gave it a go today.

This was the result:

The Doctor and his Girl

Her last good memory was of a blue police box blinking out of existence and leaving a cold, dark alley behind.

The three years that followed were nothing but misery and pain. It’s hard to find a job when you’ve got a blank slate of time on your resume where you hadn’t any employment at all. If she tried to talk to others about their petty little lives, her mind would drift to the stars. I’ve met Shakespeare and Gandhi and Genghis Khan, I’ve been on far-off planets where twin moons hang heavy in a pink sky. I don’t care what you made for supper last night. I don’t care.

She’d come back to a world where her mother plugged up the toilet and she’d have to attack it with a plunger, and those times she’d just stare into the toilet bowl and cry.

So much time had passed and he’d never come back. She always hoped he’d come but the whomp, whomp of the emerging TARDIS never touched her ears. He was off with some new girl now, some blonde tart, on a journey across the universe.

And her, he’d left her behind. Left her to the worst of worlds.

She stands in the washroom staring at the mirror, at the lines appearing on her face, at the gaunt, haunted look of her eyes. Because there was that, too. The murders. The wars. The flames. No comfort for those, either.

“You…you bastard,” she whispers at the mirror and hastily rubs the snot from her nose with her wrist. “Why won’t you come back?”

But there’s no answer. Of course there isn’t.

She picks up the razor blade and flicks off the cover. Looks back at the mirror again. Then, with a final sob, draws it across her throat. Left to right.

The blood on the mirror dissolves to reveal an endless field of stars, comets, nebulae. A whole universe spread out before her. She wants to smile, she wants to laugh.

But it’s the last thing she ever sees.

She’s joined them all. Every girl who’s accompanied the Doctor, only to be dumped back at home without warning, and left to never again to venture among the stars.

The End

I…I just ruined Doctor Who for myself.

Um…

Not doing this again.  Nope.  NEVER AGAIN.

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