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post #3 of (permalink) Old 02-29-12, 08:39 AM Thread Starter
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Big_Cheddars's Flag is: England
Join Date: Feb 2012
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Well, I see what you mean, but I just felt that the elves were quite thick and less interesting to read about than the skaven. And since the viewpoint kept switching I was never sure who the main character was (though maybe there is just more than one and I'm being thick). I admit the elves were given some characterisation, but for me the skaven were the reason I bought this and I wanted to see lots of them, though perhaps that is an unlikely expectation. I didn't really care for the elves in the end, and that's why the ending wasn't really satisfying as the skaven all sort of disappeared and then this sudden new enemy appears and gets defeated by this sudden other good guy. It just sort of grated a little, this is a story about a battle between wood elves and skaven, and in the end, neither were really the deciding factor, although I suppose in Athel Loren the elves are never really the most important people, the tree-spirits and denizens of the forest always seem to take priority.

I suppose it's a little bit to do with Josh Reynolds' novella Grail Knight, which was in hammer and bolter at some point last year (I've got the collection, and read it in there). In that novella, the elves are presented excellently, and a lot more like Tolkien elves I suppose, but they have character and motivation and agendas, and this is all in one novella. The wood elves in THoS were not up to this standard, and so it was a little disappointing.

On the other hand, the skaven were awesome, as they always are, and written brilliantly. I'm probably just more of a skaven person than a wood elf person, and that's why I preferred the skaven bits.

Oh, and about my rating, THoS did impress me, and I thoroughly enjoyed it, maybe I went on a bit too far about its criticisms, but the fact you can write so many things about a novella (like how we're both presenting different points), shows that it is a successful and thought-provoking story that people have different opinions over. That marks it as a success, and also, anything that has skaven in is usually good. Though the one exception to that that I have found is the Island of Blood novella, which I will review soon.

So basically, I rate things with my instinctual feeling of what is the best score for it. I had a lot of not-good things to say about this novella, but it was still pretty good and I enjoyed it, so I gave it a pretty high score. I'm not a fan of low scores, and I think that pretty much everything I have read from BL (apart from Fifteen Hours and the Island of Blood to a certain extent) was either very good or impressive. I think my initial scores for the books I reviewed were perhaps too high, but that was my instinct then, and I won't change that. In the end, THoS was good, Dragonmage was probably better (but didn't have skaven) and I haven't read Razumov's Tomb yet, but I will soon hopefully.

Hey, I write a lot, I read a lot, and everything from BL that I read I'll review.
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