Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Let's Talk Fantasy

I have stated before that I like all genres of books, and I do, but - just like music - I have my preferences. Typically, I enjoy reading non-fiction or historical fiction. I am a big fan of Mark Twain, Kate Chopin, C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, Henry James, Joan Didion, Sandra Cisneros, and Stephen King (less of the scary stuff, more of the insightful stuff). I'm happy to add Ernest Hemingway to the list, after my readings over the last year. Those may seem like an odd sample group to put together of the numerous authors I love (and, trust me, they are numerous), but those are the names that first come to mind when I hear the word "author".

Before finding The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss, I would have said that I like fantasy books, but they aren't at the top of my list. Yes, I realize I have Lewis and Tolkien on my list,...and I know those are fantasy but, let's be honest, who doesn't love Lewis and Tolkien? You don't have to be a big fan of fantasy to love those two. You just have to be an intelligent reader. Great writing is great writing, regardless of genre.

Of course, my opinion of fantasy changed when I found The Name of the Wind. It was one of my random choices when I was at the bookstore one day. I was scanning shelves to see what stood out to me. There was no rhyme or reason to my search, just hoping to find some hidden treasures. I had never heard of the book or the author until the moment I pulled it off the shelf. I previewed the book and was intrigued.

I was intrigued enough to buy the book, but I didn't hurry home to read it. In fact, I put it on my favorite little bookshelf to be enjoyed at a later date. I knew why I wanted to read it, but figured I would read it after the two books I already had stacked up to read. Little did I know,...a lot of things would happen in the year I owned that book.

That's right, The Name of the Wind sat on my shelf, unread, for a year before I reached for it one fateful day...

(I'm sorry to say I have to stop here for now. It is not for dramatic pause, it's because I have to get ready for work, or I'll be late! I promise to finish this tonight and tell you why I love this book.)

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