Yet another year is coming to an end, and traditionally it is time to summarize past twelve months and make some resolutions for the next cycle… here we’ll cover blogging and reading.
Piotrek: Re-enchantment has changed a little. There are less posts – 71 vs 103 in 2016. Were we (and especially I) lazy? A bit, maybe, but as most of the traffic is generated by a limited number of most successful texts, I don’t think it’s a problem that we gave up on our previous two-posts-per-week schedule. We update regularly, and there are more two-shots, conversations that seem to be more popular, and certainly fun to make, but also more time consuming. So – I’d say the blog fares well.
Ola: I didn’t check it, but it also seems to me that our entries keep getting longer, turning into small essays 😉 We also seem to have less “meta” posts – something that we should focus on remedying in 2018.
Should we mention the Gallery ;)?
Piotrek: We should 🙂 I’m unable to contribute, although my nieces start to show some promise in this area… but I’m a big fan.
Reading… I’m quite happy with myself. The plan was to read Shadows of the Apt, to advance either Cook or Erikson, and to read more non-fiction. I’ve posted two texts on Czajkowski, annoyed by the ending of his otherwise great saga. Cook is regularly reviewed by Ola and I have nothing interesting to add, but I’m more and more in awe with Black Company. Non-fiction… well, it’s mostly non-genre, let me just say I’ve managed to expand theoretical foundations of my recent disregard for the Polish nation, by re-evaluating its post-1466 history. It’s a serious accomplishment, as most Poles would say it was all nice and pretty till about 1650… how I learned to stop worrying and love the post-colonial studies. Well, not totally, but that’s another story. Take everything my more enthusiastic compatriots claim about Polish history with a grain of salt.
Ola: Aw, come on! Jagiellonian rule was very good, especially in comparison with the rest of Europe! I’d go even as far as defending Batory, so at least to 1586 😉
Piotrek: Have some winged hussars:
Ola: That’s a low blow 😛 I’d love to know, once and for all, whether they really had those wings or not. I think the consensus for now is that it changed in time 😉 Still, religious freedom and tolerance at the hight of Counter-reformation are not something to be scorned.
Piotrek: Genre book of the year – Air War, probably, with Chiang’s anthology and The Player of Games close behind. Yes, I need to write about Ian Banks, and soon. Genre non-fic… Joseph Campbell’s Hero With a Thousand Faces, not the latest in anthropology, but still very inspiring. Overall, Goodreads claims I’ve read 12 pages, and 9 whole books less than in 2016 – but 2017 was supposed to be more substantial, not bigger, and in this I have succeeded.
Ola: Genre book of the year – that’s a tough decision. I need to divide this category into fantasy and SF 😉 Assassin’s Fate and Bleak Seasons are the ultimate winners in the Fantasy category, whereas Hyperion/Hyperion’s Fall – in SF. I plan to write a review for Hyperion/Hyperion’s Fall when I find enough time to cover that topic 😉 The worst book of the year – definitely The City of Mirrors. As Piotrek, I’ve read more non-fiction this year, sociology, philosophy and history books, and my favorite among them was sir Moses Finley’s The World of Odysseus. A classic, thought-provoking read.
Piotrek: Politically it’s getting worse, all the time, and GRRM probably won’t finish Winds of Winter, again, so I’ll keep my spirits high by finishing Cook, and Banks, and at least re-starting Erikson. And perhaps with some poetry.
Hmm, and just to match my mood – but with a pinch of optimism – I’ve found this text in my daily notifications, with some great verses from Longfellow and Brontë.
Ola: I don’t think I’m waiting for any special book to be published this year. Well, I’ll definitely read the new Czajkowski when it comes out ;). A Song of Ice and Fire lost most of its allure around A Storm of Swords, and that’s putting it gently 😉 To me the best book in the series was A Game of Thrones, and no other GRRM’s book has matched it since. You just can’t play the same tricks over and over again and hope the readers don’t notice.
I plan to finish The Black Company series (only two books to go! ;)) and start on Erikson’s The Kharkanas Trilogy. I’ll keep looking for some good SF books as well, so all recommendations in this field are welcome!
Piotrek: There will be genre movies aplenty to watch, with Deadpool 2, Black Panther, Infinity War, Ant Man 2… maybe even Han Solo: the Movie won’t suck too much… 2018 should be, at least, survivable.
So, Happy New Year 2018! 😉
8 thoughts on “Old year, new year…”
First, and most importantly, what is the isbn number of your Sea Watch book? Being in the US I’ve got a real mixed bag of the Apt books, as publishers changed part way through and in the case of the Sea Watch I had to end up getting a UK edition, which isn’t the same size as the next 4 books. But yours looks like it matches. So if I have the isbn, I can track it down and buy it!
*thumps chest and howls*
I also like how you guys do your back and forth in your posts. How does that work in writing the actual post? You email each other and then stitch it all together or something?
Piotrek: Looking forward to your thoughts on re-reading Erikson.
Olag: Is it Ola G. as in Ola Gorlam, or just Olag? I’m looking forward to your review on Hyperion/Fall, as I enjoyed the first 2 books in that tetralogy.
And I’m glad that I ran across your blog this year. I don’t remember if one of you found me or I found you, but it has certainly enriched my WP feed 🙂
So happy new years!
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Thanks! And the pleasure goes both ways, you do read and review some very interesting stuff.
Our method – yeah, emails. Sometimes preceded by live discussion, but when we write one of us starts, and subsequent versions go back and forth, until we’re both happy with the result.
Sea Watch – 978-1-4472-2492-1, probably my favourite edition, but I couldn’t find them all… it’s harder when you can only order online, from Amazon Marketplace I sometimes get different versions than I expected.
Finally, Erikson – re-starting, a few years ago I’ve given up after 60 pages of Polish translation of Gardens of the Moon. I’ve bought the full set in the correct language version since 🙂
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Thank you for that isbn. I’ll go see if the dimension actually ARE the same and not just look it.
Glad to know how you do these posts. I must say, that takes some commitment and you 2 are obviously good friends if you can cohost a blog and not kill each other 🙂
With the english versions, are you going to be starting with GotM or jump in elsewhere?
GotM, I think I’ll go chronologically…
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Thanks and ditto to your blog! I very much enjoy your frank reviews and lively discussions 🙂
To be clear, the ISBN given by Piotrek is for the UK version – and if you want this version, a warning: Heirs of the Blade in that edition are extremely hard to get. I tried a good few times and in the end got the US edition. Plus, the last two books in the series are bigger despite being in the same edition! The problem has been compounded by the new UK edition, with different types of weaponry on the covers and different dimensions of the books.
It’s Ola G 🙂
Yeah, Hyperion/Hyperion’s Fall made a huge impression on me. I heard the next two books are not as good, so I’ll probably give myself some time before I read them 😉
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Thank you. I know my reviews are chock full of spoilers, so it doesn’t bother me when people don’t read because of that. Thankfully I’ve not had anyone curse me out for spoiling something. Not yet anyway 🙂
Dang, I checked that isbn and that’s the one I already have. I have about a 2.5cm difference between the Sea Watch and Heirs of the Blade (sea watch is shorter). I just want my books to roughly be of uniform height, sigh.
I had real issues with the Endymion books but that was just as much because of theology/philosophy as it was the writing.
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I agree on what you say about ‘A Song of Ice and Fire’. After book 3, it lost some of its magic and although I still enjoyed the latest 2, I feel they were much weaker than the first 3. ‘Storm of Swords’ remains my favourite.
You 2 have a great 2018 🙂
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Thanks! And you too! 🙂 Lots of good books and good food 😉