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Author Topic: Long Price Quartet thoughts and opinions
TheGrimace
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Let me start off by apologizing if this has been discussed at length previously. My weak search-fu wasn't able to turn up much quickly.

I just finished A Shadow in Summer based on a number of folks recommending it in the various "what should I read next" threads. While I thought it was interesting, I didn't feel overly pulled to continue the series.

Can anyone who has read the rest of the books give me some insight on your reactions? i.e. is the value of the series in the overarching storyline, or does the fact that I wasn't wowed by the first book bode ill for me continuing?

Note: detractors of the series are more than welcome, and I don't particularly mind spoilers.

My quick impressions: while I want to like the characters (and I do, to a certain extent) I find it hard to really get behind them.

Otah - I want to like him, and he seems like a nice guy, but is pretty aimless. When you're main character doesn't have any apparent dreams, aspirations or even immediate goals it's hard to really get behind him as anything more than a nice guy. At the beginning I thought there was some hope of him striking out and trying to reform the system he was rebelling against, or develop his training on his own terms or something, but it doesn't seem to go anywhere.

Maati - Again, seems like a nice kid. I don't dislike him, but he also admits to not really having any initiative of his own, which makes him hard to latch on to.

Liat - Kinda a nice girl, but it's hard to say if she's sincere in whatever she's feeling. Because we don't get much of her POV I have a hard time telling if she's really just using one or more of the other characters, or if she's sincere in her feelings...

I kinda get the feeling that much of this might be expounded on in later volumes, but am unsure. I guess it feels like this was more of a world-building novel, but without all that fleshed out a world so far (very little explanation of the limits of the Andat, how they are bound, how they are controlled, why other nations don't have them, etc etc... lots of potentially interesting stuff, but very little of it pursued.)

That being said, I more or less enjoyed the book, and did appreciate that most everyone in it seemed to act in a believable fashion (which is no small feat), I just didn't feel compelled.

Thanks in advance to anyone who wants to contribute.

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TomDavidson
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It is, hands-down, the best fantasy series written in the last decade. The first book is perhaps the weakest.
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Tante Shvester
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::takes a pose of agreement::

I'm in the midst of this series and am impressed with the quality of the writing as well as of the intricately woven plot.

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TheGrimace
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Tom & Tante, can you elaborate more on what makes you say that?

It's statements like that which make be curious about the rest, but still unclear if I'm just missing something, or have different tastes or something.

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Kwea
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I will probably start reading this on Friday, when I plan a trip to B&N.
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kmbboots
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Lovely books. You do get more to "latch on to" with the characters in the later books. The world itself is interesting and the avatar concept (fresh and original) does get fleshed out in considerable detail.
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El JT de Spang
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I'm really annoyed the fourth book isn't out in mass market paperback yet. I would like to read it.
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scholarette
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I have not read the last one. I am waiting for my local library to carry it (they have the first three) or paperback. But, while I did not like it enough to invest in hardback (plus the space on bookshelf for hardback), I did really like the series. The characters are more driven in future books, which helps. I also thought the world was unique and well fleshed out. Interesting philosophical questions with the magic system and society. I would strongly recommend, but not to say my book club (though maybe if I join the smart people one I would).
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natural_mystic
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I've read the first three. I found the plot of the first slightly flawed. The next two are quality. Not standard fantasy fare by any means.
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