It was Christmas last week, and so of course I got some new books: some RPG stuff (in the next section); a chilli cookbook; volumes 9, 10, and 12 of That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime (volume 11 was apparently temporarily sold out); Homo Deus (my dad has a habit of getting me books he thinks I should read); The Library at Mount Char; and Perdido Street Station.
This week I read:
The Library at Mount Char by Scott Hawkins
Wow, this one was a surprise! I knew it was pretty well-regarded, and the premise hooked me, but once I started I just couldn’t put it down. Hard to believe that this is the author’s first foray into fantasy, and that he normally writes dry technical Linux books. It’s pretty fast-paced, there were twists I didn’t see coming, and I like the America-with-hidden-magic setting. If I have any criticism, it’s that the ending felt a little weak. But not weak enough to spoil what came before, just not as good as it could have been.
One part which stood out to me was how the character who studied animals found it difficult to speak human languages and even think like a person after a while, and so gave the impression of being a bit slow; but then we get a scene with him speaking to a lion, from the lion’s perspective, and he’s eloquent and clearly smart, it’s a nice contrast to how the human characters see him and how we’ve seen him until then.
The author’s said he tried to start on a sequel but there are no firm plans on actually finishing and publishing it, since he doesn’t want a lacklustre book. Which is fair enough, but if he does write one I’ll definitely read it.
I got the A Time to Harvest campaign (for Call of Cthulhu), and also bought myself the ALIEN RPG core book and GM screen on a whim:
Sadly, while I love Call of Cthulhu, my players are less keen. They like it, they just like other things more. So that book will probably sit around unplayed (but not unread) for a while. On the other hand, I’ve managed to drum up some interest in ALIEN, so I’ll run a one-shot of that in the near future.
And, not that the players know it yet, but the next session of my Traveller campaign is going to feature a very ALIEN-inspired abandoned mining colony…
- On the Four Table Legs of Traveller:
- Hexcrawl Checklist:
- In defense of the classic D&D saving throws