My addiction

As much as I try, I can't beat my addiction: buying new books.
Lucky authors. I hope they return the favor when I'm published (think positive!)

I bought The Hunger Games, which needs no introduction (unless you're some kind of literary snob and don't think there could be anything of Real Cultural Importance in a YA book.)

I also picked up a book that has been getting some buzz. The Magicians, by Lev Grossman. I've already read about 100 pages and can't stop. It's really good fiction. Harry Potter for grown-ups,
is what some reviewers are calling it.

The premise: what if there really was a school for magic, concealed right on the edges of our world. That's what perpetually daydreaming high school senior Quentin Coldwater finds at a school called Brakebills in upstate New York.

When we read fantasy for kids and young adults, we accept that the worlds of magic, vampires, faeries, etc. are real. We buy into it. That's something you have to accept on page one. In adult fiction, we have to be convinced. Grossman tackles this concept with great wit and wonderful literary abilities. There are a few other books that come to mind in this field of Literary Fantasy Fiction: Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke; The Stolen Child by Keith Donohue, and of course many others including Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere and American Gods.

Know of any great books by "literary" authors in the field of fantasy or speculative fiction? Tell me about them.

Look for my spoiler-free review of The Magicians soon.


Elise Murphy said...

And so devastating to find that the larger world and those concerns that plague us mere mortals also dog Lev Grossman's Magicians. A wonderful, grown-up looks at what happens when you're all powerful and can have anything you want (amongst many other delightful plot twists).

Anita said...

I know a lot of people who loooved JONATHAN STARNGE, but I just couldn't get into it. I think I was using it as one of my treadmill books (meaning I read it on the treadmill) and it may have been too complex for running and reading. I'm giving it another go sans treadmill, soon.

I haven't read THE MAGICIANS but like the sound of it. "Harry Potter for grown-ups" that.

Ron Smith said...

Anita, Jonathan Strange is a beast of a book as you know. I think it's one that needs scheduled reading time, if that's possible in your life.

It's dense and you have to read consciously. Know what I mean? Some books you can just read and be thinking abut something else at the same time. This one requires all your synapses firing to get the gist of it.

I found it worthwhile, though.

Jessie Oliveros said...

I loved the Hunger Games. I am waiting until the end of writing my book to treat myself to Catching Fire. Interesting that Magicians is for grown-ups but the main character is in high school. I'll have to check it out.

Rebecca said...

What about The Giver? That's one of my favorites. But maybe that's too easy.

Ron Smith said...

I've never read the Giver, although I immediately think the name Lois Lowry. I can even see the cover with the old man with a beard.

Truth be told, I know it is a classic but I have no idea what it's about.

Google here I come. Thanks.

Rebecca said...

Oh, I will be so disappointed if you don't read The Giver RIGHT AWAY! :-)

Another suggestion is Unwind, by Neal Shusterman.

Ron Smith said...

I'm definitely going to pick it up, Rebecca. I can't believe I haven't read it in all these years.