I was supposed to go and see Neil Gaiman tonight, but my cat decided that I would be spending time at home with a tweaked back.
The little #&$@!! tripped me at lunch time in the kitchen today. I managed to catch myself but the effort twinged something painfully in my back. Then, one of the day home kids pulled a stupid and I had to haul him up from where he’d wedged himself in between the wall and the bed, further exacerbating the issue to the point where I’m hobbling and immobile.
You have no idea how much I hate and disappointment I have flowing through my veins right now. If Palpatine ran out of hate lightning, I could easily refill his supply about 1000 times over and still have some to spare.
This was something I was really looking forward to. Beyond anything else this year and it all comes crashing down because of a stupid cat.
Stan Lee shaped a lot of my early life without even knowing it. Through the pages of Spider-Man, The X-Men and the rest of the comics that make up the Marvel Universe I learned to differentiate right from wrong. I learned that good guys win. Most importantly, I learned that with great power, comes great responsibility.
He told stories about heroes. Heroes with super-normal powers. Those heroes were flawed. They struggled against adversity. Those heroes fought for a better world. Sometimes they stumbled, but they never stopped fighting the good fight.
I remember watching some mid-80s Incredible Hulk cartoon with Stan’s iconic “True Believers” narration and being instantly hooked. I watched the cartoon because it was cool and it was the Hulk, but I went back every week for more because Stan’s voice over made everything cooler.
Here’s the problem with challenging a creative type like myself with making a list about something I’m passionate about. It won’t stop. Limit myself to seven books? I’d rather cut off my good right arm. Like I said at the beginning, the number of books that have influenced me may be closer to seven hundred rather than seven and while paring it down to seven was challenging, there were definitely a few that I left out.
I purposefully left out a number of books that my friends had already posted, even though they meant a lot to me because I didn’t want to dilute their contributions by saying ” Oooh! Oooh! Me too!”. There were also quite a few books that I debated over for various reasons and while they influenced me, and were definitely among my favourites, they have been supplanted by the books that made the list.
This list is by no means comprehensive. I may revisit this theme again in the future and go a little deeper down the rabbit hole of my favourite authors and/or books but in the meantime here is a glimpse of a few more books that orbit the being that is me.
And so we come to the final day of the challenge. As they say, you should always save the best for last. To that end, I give you…
This is definitely, by far, my favourite book and series in recent memory. The style is a retrospective story within a story somewhat along the lines of Scheherazade. Sometimes it becomes nested stories within stories within stories. Rather than having to tell a story to prevent themselves from being killed. The main character, Kvothe, tells the story of his life to a chronicler, telling him it will take 3 days (something unheard of). This is day 1.
Kvothe, is a prodigal musician and arcanist (read: sorcerer). He is self-confident, humanly fallible, and wholly believable. He is a character that lives, breathes and steps right off the page, fully formed.
The magic is understated, more steampunk science than sorcery. It works in this setting
The main draw is the story itself. It sucks you in like nothing else. Rothfuss has a way with words that makes you believe you can feel the air move around you like a whisper or feel the force of a whip crack.
I wait “patiently” for the third book in the trilogy. Is it here yet?