If I was widely read, I'd be inviting the trolls to ravage me for my heretic thoughts. I don't get to read novels as much as I used to due to the volume of stuff I read to keep up with my job as a corporate controller. So I generally am reluctant to pick up a writer that I am unfamiliar with. But having re-read every Niven, Pournelle, Feist, Asimov, Clarke, and other regulars I could get my hand on, I decided to branch out. Part of the reasons was the new used bookstore my wife found.
So earlier this year, I heard reference both online and with my new gaming group about Glen Cook's The Black Company and I found the trilogy Chronicles of the Black Company at said bookstore for $4. I breezed through all 700+ pages in about two weeks, reading during my commute and in the evenings when I had time.
On Wednesday, I had run the wife to the local library and stumbled across Greg Bear's Halo:Cryptum. I've not read any of the Halo fiction and despite playing Halo 2 & 3 on XBox, I'm not terribly familiar with the background. Two days later I was done, very pleased with the writing and the story. Unfortunately, Bear has only penned one of the Halo books, so I'm going to have to look for his other stuff.
Here though is where I'm going to brand myself a heretic. At Chicago O'Hare, on my way from my annual board retreat to meet up with the family in Orlando for the start of our vacation, I decided to pick up George R.R. Martin's A Game of Thrones. I've heard so much about this book. I've seen the RPG and may even have a copy of it. I know its on HBO or Showtime or one of the premium channels. So, I decided to take the plunge and I regret doing so. Its terrible. I've made it 85 pages and where there are a few cool things and concepts in the first 85 pages, my mind felt like it was in a block of ice while reading it. I tried to pick this book up over a 7 day vacation and found no joy in the book. When the protagonist's youngest son so predictable died on page 85, I just couldn't be bothered to pick it up again.