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So I posted whilst away, but in no detail, because I was on my phone, I repeat those records here (so this is "read in the last three weeks"):


that was interesting enough,but not so hugely interesting that I'm desperate to read any of the sequels. In particular it was very annoying the way people were demanding respect just because of who they are, without demonstrating any reason that you might respect them

Of the October Daye series by Seanan McGuire:
*Late Eclipses
*One Salt Sea (contains mermaids, was reading when saw the little mermaid
*Ashes of Honour
*Chimes at Midnight
*The Winter Long
*Red Rose Chain (acquired from SF bookstore in Stockholm, lucky me)

Which is me completely caught up! Yay. Not much I can say about the later installments without spoiling the earlier. I find the writing seriously engaging and few of these took me more than 2 days (of vacation, so plenty of time to read) and all were very hard to put down. Now I need to read all the short-fiction... Predictably I love Tybalt best.

*The Philosopher Kings (afterword says author spent much time in Copenhagen
national museum was there when finished reading it) by Jo Walton
Sequel to the Just City, continues amazing.

*Chalion series by Bujold (all 3 novels and Penric's Demon).
I liked these, but not as much as I like Vorkosigan probably because there's less character-continuity between the books which makes them flow less well into each other.

*Pocket Apocalypse by Seanan McGuire
this is the latest InCryptid novel, which I waited to get until I could get a UK ebook. As with the previous it is very good although Riley is VERY ANNOYING and I want to thump him.

Next up:
I think the honest answer to this is "Shepherd's Crown" the last PTerry (*sniff*), although I have a whole bunch of stuff I've bought and not read yet to plow through so lots of choices.

(no subject)

Date: 2015-09-03 07:20 am (UTC)
ext_3375: Banded Tussock (Banded Tussock)
From: [identity profile]

...the way people were demanding respect just because of who they are, without demonstrating any reason that you might respect them

This is how societies dominated by an aristocracy *are* and Frank Herbert really got the 'feel' of it, the way it pervades everything; and he's alone in late 20th-century novelists in writing this into the conversation, the characters' egos, and the interpersonal relationships.

This is why I can no longer read The Mote in Gods Eye: they're 20th-Century Americans pretending to have aristocratic titles, or subordinate roles; and, outside the Navy, the conversations people had across vast gulfs of rank were *terrifying*.

Quite simply, the aristocrats would not have tolerated the lack of repeated acknowledgement and affirmation - explicit, and in subtle behavioural cues - and the servant (and merchant) classes would never have spoken that way: they risk dismissal, ruination, banishment and worse, in any moment's inattention, and they would be aware of that at all times.

And yes, the aristocrats need that constant affirmation, too: on the one hand, they need to display an effortless mastery of their own house and the more general society of lesser citizens; and on the other, they must constantly maintain the sense of 'one of us' among their fellow Lords and Ladies while never being overly-obsequeous to a superior Lord, nor overly-familiar; and always show a very deftly-placed respect to lessor Lords and Ladies that affirms their junior status without a perceived insult. They are relatively secure, compared to commoners, but the social politics of aristocracy can be very unforgiving and, for persistent ineptitude, a one-way trip to obscurity... Or dangerous displeasure from someone really senior.

...And the whole of society, outside of the underclass, models its relations on the 'manners' that flow from that. A senior clerk in Dickens day might as well have been a Duke, and would've required constand affirmation of his superiority, were you a junior in his office.

I get that from Herbert, in the Dune Books, in a way that is both irritating - it's a horrible society! - and completely natural as you slip into the characters and their world.

I might just re-read Dune myself: functioning as a commoner in that kind of society is a skill we'll all need in later life.

(no subject)

Date: 2015-09-03 09:03 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
It might be realistic, but it's still hugely annoying. And I'm supposed to *like* these people?

(no subject)

Date: 2015-09-03 05:41 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I do not think you are supposed to like the majority of House Atredies, no. I think you're supposed to like Chani and maaaaybe Gurney and Stilgar, but not many of the others.


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