Reading Made Difficult

Case 1: He’s No R.R.

Not too long ago, I posted that I was giving the fantasy genre another chance to win me back into its good graces — instead of “Oh good gracious!” So it was that I chose to pick up Martin’s Game of Thrones series. I chose that series based on the fact that HBO did a mini series of the first book.

Y’know, it wasn’t too bad for awhile — quite awhile as a matter of fact. After reading the 800 page first book, Game of Thrones, I somewhat eagerly grabbed the next volume, A Clash of Kings and consumed it’s almost 1000 pages. So, onward I went onto the next volume, A Storm of Swords, and after 700 pages … I. Gave. Up. I’m sorry, but I couldn’t face the next 400 pages plus whatever number is in the next book … not to mention the one after that … although I guess I just mentioned it.

Frankly my dears, I’m done. Length, I can deal with, but this series is simply too black and bloodthirsty for my taste. He’s a good enough writer, but in my humble opinion, George R.R. Martin shoud remove the intials from his name — ’cause there’s only one R.R. in the fantasy genre, and it’s tantamount to heresy, doncha know, for Georgie boy to also usurp those sacred initials. I’m sorry, but the R.R. thing is simply not on as the Brits may be wont to say.

However, that’s mostly an aside to my main problem that the series is just too bloody violent for moi. Perhaps I could stand it if the good guys, whoever they might be, could actually overcome every now and then rather than having their heads chopped off etc. But I guess, based on the popularity of the series, that’s just silly ole me … being old and silly.

Case 2: Minutia in Long, Complex Sentences

After reading The Hobbit yet one more time, Cuppa and I didn’t quite know what to do next for our bedtime story. So … we thought we’d turn our attention to the hitherto neglected Jane Austin. Neither of us had read Austen, but who didn’t love the movie versions/series of Pride and Prejudice or Sense and Sensibility. So, we picked up a set of all (I think) of her works.

The first book we chose by using the time tested eenie meenie method was Northanger Abbey, and Cuppa has yet to recover. That Austen dame could write at rather impressive length about bits of minutia, let me tell ya. On and on she might blather for page after tedious page about mud on the boots or some such. Plus her sentences were so long and involved that I lost my way more frequently than not: thus leaving poor Cuppa to futilely endeavour to fathom whatever it was that I was attempting to read.

So … we haven’t raced to pick up the next of her masterpieces. However, on a personal level and not speaking for my dearly beloved. I was frequently quite tickled by Austen’s use of language and will likely decide to read more of her on my own. I think it’s the oral thing that was the killer. They employed a different writing style two centuries ago, which made it very difficult to read aloud … with any sense of sensibility. I mean to say that I’m old but not two centuries old.

Case 3: Success at Last

However, in the fullness of time, as a result of having a wonderful, kind and caring man, Cuppa didst find herself gifted with an iPad and has since downloaded several free ebooks. For the past few nights we have begun reading a collection of Sherlock Holmes short stories by Sir Aurthur Conan Doyle. And y’know, it’s nae goin too badly.

As far as I can recall, I have only read The Hound of the Baskervilles and that was about fifty years ago in a high school English class, so Doyle/Holmes is basically a new experience for me. And I’m kinda likin it, if you’ll pardon my English.

As for my first impressions of reading on a iPad/eReader, it’s a bit of alrighty-o.


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5 Responses to Reading Made Difficult

  1. Mara says:

    You started with Northanger Abbey? I must commend you, I have yet to finish it and I’ve read all of her novels. (I started it about eight years ago)

  2. Your comments notwithstanding here, AC, I would not even have started George R.R. Martin’s series. Harry Potter was the only fantasy series I’ve gotten all the way through. Must confess to never having read any of Jane Austen’s work, but can recommend a films “The Jane Austen Book Club” which was also a book. I just bought an ipad today and have to figure out the free book downloads cause if they’re free – that’s for me.

  3. Ruth says:

    Pride and Prejudice is more readable than N.A.
    I am still so tempted to get an iPad but I am enjoying my Kindle. I downloaded the Sherlock Holmes stories too, particularly the short ones (i.e. The Speckled Band)

  4. Dimple says:

    I find I am completely spoiled for fantasy by Tolkien, but my daughter convinced me to read “The Way of Kings” by Brandon Sanderson. Not as good as J. R. R. T., but not bad, either.

    I read “Northanger Abbey” recently. Not exactly my favorite read ever, but I did finish it. It was my first Austen novel, also. I rather enjoyed her poking fun at the novel as legitimate reading…and at those who believe the situations in novels apply to real life!

  5. Bernie says:

    Love Jane Austin, not big on George Martin and I think you will really enjoy the free ebooks, my friend uses his Ipad all the time for all his reading. Now I like the feel of the book in my hands just as I love reading the newspaper each morning while drinking a cup of coffee…….:-)Hugs

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