Medieval Fantasy Rant
Okay, today I really do not have anything planned out. So, I am just going to do a bit of a grab bag post.
Originally, I had wanted to do a review of Patrick Rothfuss’s The Name of the Wind, but I have only read about thirty pages into the novel and I really do not feel like I want to go back and read any more at this particular time. Maybe it is Fantasy overload or I am not that big fan of Rothfuss’s writing. I do not know. Maybe I will come back to it, maybe I will not. I just know that I am not a Rothfuss fan at the moment.
This does bring up the question though, how do you justify not completing a book? If I do not finish a book, I feel terrible afterwards, as if I have done something wrong by not finishing the narrative. I know where this feeling comes from. I was an English Literature major (and have a BA in English Literature). The conceit of being an English or a Liteterature major is that you have to finish everything you read. Even if you think it is bad, horrible, or the worst thing you have ever read. You still have to finish. And if you do not finish it, you are a terrible scholar.
And I have not finished reading a lot of things. The Name of the Wind, The City and the City, Light in August, Orientalism, etc. How do/ can I justify not finishing? Because I have a finite amount of time and I do not want to waste that time on texts I do not like. But there is another issue at work here too.
Am I losing my passion for Fantasy? Probably not, but I cannot help but ask myself that. I will admit, though, that I am not a huge fan of Medieval or Tolkeinsian Fantasy. I rather like The Steel Remains and The Darkness that Comes Before plus I am fond of A Song of Ice and Fire (even though I skim like mad in the latter). But on the whole, I dislike Medieval Fantasy. My least favorite section of English Literature is definitely the Medieval Period. I was just bored witless. Now, I have read a few really good Medieval histories. The best being J.L. Laynesmith’s The Last Medieval Queens, in my opinion.
Looking over things, my favorite genres of Fantasy tend to be Sword and Sorcery, New Weird, Steampunk, and Contemporary. I wonder how many Fantasy fans are not fond of High Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, or Medieval Fantasy?
I am thinking of starting a new project (or two or three). I am going to get on that Bas-Lag reading project, probably a reading/ viewing of Fullmetal Alchemist, and maybe something else.