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Reading Raymond E. Feist's Magician

Me : it's like all the women come from a really short catalogue of fantasy women. " I'll have three Feisty Ones, six Simpering Women, twenty anonymous Servants..."

philmophlegm (with sarcasm...) : "Well, what other types of fantasy women are there...?"


"Oh yes, Limara the She-Wildebeeste."

Am also amused by the chainmail concept : I imagine REF thinking "hmmm.  How could we make the One Ring even cooler?  Ooh, ooh,  we'll have lots of them and we'll knit them into chainmail armour and have someone wear it!  Take THAT JRRT! "



( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
27th Dec, 2010 12:23 (UTC)
27th Dec, 2010 12:37 (UTC)
Remember it's a novelised RPG.

I had problems getting past a writer who could name his hero "Pug".
27th Dec, 2010 13:36 (UTC)
Yeah, there is that. Some writers have a gift for names. Feist isn't one of them. Which is a shame, because there are moments when Magician is pretty good. There are moments when it is very much by-the-numbers fantasy, but on balance I think I'd give it four out of five.
28th Dec, 2010 09:43 (UTC)
a novelised RPG.
I don't see why characters in a role playing game have to be from the Very Thin Book of Fantasy Women. That might be a reason for an oddly structured plot or awkward pacing (as the characters charge off in all directions failing to miss obvious clues) but character development doesn't fall into that category.
28th Dec, 2010 10:38 (UTC)
Re: a novelised RPG.
It does if, as I suspect, the group was almost entirely male. Remember when this book was written. (Admittedly, this assumption is based as much as anything on the lack of decent female characters, which I know is a circular argument.) The RPG thing was denied for years, but more recently Feist has admitted this was based on an RPG world. Mind you, the male characters aren't that deep.
28th Dec, 2010 16:23 (UTC)
Re: a novelised RPG.
It was published 1982, not 1882!

I'm prepared to make allowances for historical cultural differences, but for a man in 1982, even one immersed in a relatively male culture, to be writing like this is not, in my view, cultural, it's just poor, careless and clumsy character building. He's obviously read Tolkien, one assumes he has probably read Le Guin, so he must have some idea that characters can have more than one dimension.

Whether the book is based on a game or not should not make any difference to the quality of the character building : there is nothing intrinsic to any game that says characters must be onedimensional.

He's just not very good. He may be better now, I don't know, I've not read the rest of his stuff. But his not very goodness is nothing to do with 1982 or roleplaying, it's just him.
28th Dec, 2010 16:47 (UTC)
Re: a novelised RPG.
Theoretically, you're right.

Unfortunately, I have yet to read a book plainly based on an RPG that was any good. Your mileage may vary.
28th Dec, 2010 18:40 (UTC)
Re: a novelised RPG.
I wouldn't say male roleplayer = shallow female characters. I know one or two women roleplayers whos male characters tend to be better than their female ones, and some male RPers who's female characters are awesome.
28th Dec, 2010 19:49 (UTC)
Re: a novelised RPG.
Quite true. But the movement of RPG to book... well, doesn't work very well.
27th Dec, 2010 15:43 (UTC)
I have to admit, I prefer Pug when he becomes Milamber.
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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