Author Topic: Book Thread Continued

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Der Jermeister

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Re: Book Thread Continued
« Reply #1920 on: November 28, 2017, 12:09:04 PM »
Right now I'm juggling the Barsoom books and the Sixes Wild series by Tempe O'Kun (furry literature). Since the speech function on my iPad somewhat locked it up I've resorted to minimizing the text size so I can preview the text and take notes before reading each page, and it's still worked more than maxing the font, since that made it easy to get lost in a plot.

Dincrest

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Re: Book Thread Continued
« Reply #1921 on: December 12, 2017, 07:53:18 PM »
I had some time to read more Lord of the Rings.  I'm in the middle of the chapter "Treebeard" in The Two Towers.  I must say, this and the preceding chapter "The Uruk-Hai" have been two of my favorites because they're Merry and Pippin chapters.  Merry and Pippin actually have personalities, unlike everyone else (particularly the folks in the Fellowship) who are all just boring slabs of exposition.  Like, when Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli talk, I have trouble telling who's who since none of them have distinctive personalities and have all just been interchangeable mouthpieces for exposition.  Aside from Merry and Pippin, only Treebeard has shown a personality.  Tolkien's worldbuilding is incredible, but his characters leave much to be desired. 

One thing is bugging me from the Uruk-Hai chapter, though.  When Grishnakh
Spoiler: show
frisks Merry and Pippin for the McGuffin in order to stage a mutiny against Ugluk, Pippin teases him by saying, "Gollum, gollum" and referring to the ring as "my precious."  HOW?!?!?!?!  There is NO WAY that Pippin had any prior knowledge of Gollum to even know to do that.  And no amount of logic-leaping rigmarole is making this make sense to me. 
« Last Edit: December 12, 2017, 08:00:19 PM by Dincrest »
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Arvis

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Re: Book Thread Continued
« Reply #1922 on: December 13, 2017, 09:52:18 AM »
You really don't think Pippin heard all about Bilbo's adventures while living in the Shire??  Bilbo probably told that story hundreds of times.  Everyone in the Shire could have made that joke.
"You know, you're pretty cool too, Arvis.  You like good music, good games, and good tennis." - Divingfalcons

Dincrest

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Re: Book Thread Continued
« Reply #1923 on: December 14, 2017, 06:17:01 PM »
But Bilbo sometimes outright lied or withheld the truth in his "tall tales."  And even when he told the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth at the Council of Elrond, Merry and Pippin were not present.  And in both The Hobbit and Fellowship, Bilbo was extremely secretive about the ring throughout his life, so I'd venture he remained secretive about the ring.  I also wouldn't put it past the ring's influence to feed that. 

And then we come to the whole thing about how in the world did Pippin know to use that specific Gollum tease on Grishnakh?  It felt too calculated to be a simple hail Mary/shot in the dark, especially given Grishnakh's reaction that he seemed aware of Gollum and precious. 

I don't know... that whole interaction just doesn't sit right with me.  Everything around it feels too coincidental.  How would Pippin innately have that innate, very specific understanding of how to say "gollum, gollum, precious" and act as Gollum would?  Would Bilbo's tall tales and books written mention all those details, especially given how secretive he was about the ring and how he admitted that the book wasn't the truth?  And Merry and Pippin strike the others as kinda flighty and not people you'd make privy to the most pertinent information.   Maybe (and that's a BIG maybe) I'll buy that maybe Merry and Pippin badgered Samwise to tell them everything he heard at the council of Elrond, but I'm sure there are details he may not have picked up on, since whenever multiple people are exposed to something we all naturally attune to different details. 

Anyway, I'm still in the middle of the Treebeard chapter and it's a good one. 
« Last Edit: December 14, 2017, 06:39:07 PM by Dincrest »
"Golly, why can't I act right outside of a baseball game?"
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Arvis

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Re: Book Thread Continued
« Reply #1924 on: Yesterday at 09:36:32 AM »
It's implied that the entire story of "The Hobbit" was fictionally written by Bilbo, and the entire Gollum sequence in that would have been a favorite with young Pippin and Merry, et al.  There's really no reason to think Bilbo wouldn't have hammed up that entire thing and put as much life and detail into it as possible.

As for Grishnakh's reaction, well... it wouldn't be the first time our fantasy heroes got incredibly lucky.  You gotta suspend that disbelief, bro.
"You know, you're pretty cool too, Arvis.  You like good music, good games, and good tennis." - Divingfalcons

Dincrest

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Re: Book Thread Continued
« Reply #1925 on: Yesterday at 04:56:48 PM »
Suspending my disbelief is something I do all the time, especially when I play RPGs.  And in fantasy, I can totally suspend my disbelief about eldritch worlds with talking trees, monks shooting fireballs from their fists, a small party of meddling kids overthrowing an imperial army to save the world, all that good stuff.  I get plenty immersed into that stuff.  But sometimes things happen where I feel very consciously forced to suspend my disbelief and it makes the "this isn't logical, even within the illogical rules of this fantasy world" part of my brain hiccup.  It bugs me when some little thing is too pat and the planets were so perfectly aligned for something so incredibly specific to happen and there is no explanation. 

Sorry, but that one little interaction between Pippin and Grishnakh was that one place where it broke my immersion. 

That's a big reason why I like a lot of Brandon Sanderson's books.  Nothing in the first Mistborn trilogy happened "because F you, that's why" and everything was explained utilizing the "logic" of how that world works.  Sanderson deftly rode the edge of that knife where things could have totally slipped into "because F you, that's why" territory, but it didn't.  Dude is a master. 

At this point, Arvis, it may be best that we just agree to disagree. 


"Golly, why can't I act right outside of a baseball game?"
     -Peppermint Patty

Arvis

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Re: Book Thread Continued
« Reply #1926 on: Yesterday at 05:18:56 PM »
I WILL NEVER AGREE TO DISAGREE!!!
"You know, you're pretty cool too, Arvis.  You like good music, good games, and good tennis." - Divingfalcons