Sunday, August 22, 2010

Very Short and Non-Specific Thoughts on Kay Kenyon and Ken Scholes

Sunday, August 22, 2010
Prince of Storms: I find myself not knowing how to talk about Kay Kenyon’s Entire and the Rose series, and, as such, it’s been a couple of months since I finished the book. With each volume, the series becomes increasingly complex in terms of who the characters are and what, exactly, is going on in the world(s). Check out my reviews of the first three books to get a sense of what’s going on. If you’re not into it after the first two books, there’s not much reason to read the fourth. The third book, City Without End, was probably the high point of the series, but Prince of Storms provides solid resolution to the story arcs and offers unexpected delights and surprises. (reading copy provided courtesy of Pyr)

Antiphon: I really wanted to like this. I think Scholes has great potential with Psalms of Isaak series and he had a decent enough start with Lamentation (a book that doesn’t quite live up to the hype. The setting is fantastic, several millennium past a higher tech society fallen after at least one apocalypse. There’s magic, but there is also uncovered tech. If you read the book, the ending offers a strikingly discordant contrast with one particular event and everything else happening around it. Though, if you really think about the world Scholes has created, that contrast is ALL over the place and is likely to become even more stark in the final two books. My problem (and I think this really is my problem) is that as great as the underlying ideas behind the series and the setting are, the execution of the storytelling grates on me and frequently comes across as clunky. There is a marked improvement in Scholes’ craft from the first to the third book, but something in here just isn’t working for me. The thing is that I just can’t figure out what. (reading copy provided courtesy of Tor)  (reviews of Lamentation and Canticle)

Regarding Antiphon, you probably want to read "A Weeping Czar Beholds the Fallen Moon" first.  It provides a bit of background to stuff that is referenced several times in the novel and, if I understand the novel correctly, will become increasingly important in the next two books.


Roland said...

I've been cautious of both those series, and looking for reasons to start reading them. Shallow as it sounds, the design change in Scholes' series doesn't help...

Joe Sherry said...

I dislike the new design for Scholes, but if it helps sell more books...fine. That's what covers are supposed to do. I prefer the old style, though.

I do recommend Kay Kenyon's books, though. I'm a bit hesitant on recommending them blindly, but it is an excellent and ambitious series. Definitely worth reading, and the second and third books just get better.

Chad Hull said...

The only bit of Scholes I've read is the short story you referenced. I read it a few months back but there was nothing there that made me want to dive into a four part series by the same author.

Perhaps I'm odd, but having no attachment to the books, I actually like the new art style. I don't dislike the old, but the new doesn't bother me as much as it seem to piss most off bloggers off.

Roland said...

I think most people are pissed off by the change, not the design itself.

Joe Sherry said...

That's a point, and I'm not a fan of changing covers mid-series because I like matching books, but i also don't care for the new art. At all.

I dislike the change and what they changed to.

◄Design by Pocket Distributed by Deluxe Templates