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Talisman/Black Tower SPOILERS including Dark Tower series
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 26, 2015 5:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Menolly wrote:
Zarathustra wrote:
EoTD?

Eye of the Dragon, I think.


Yep. Eyes of the Dragon.

Orlion wrote:
Have you read The Tommyknockers?


Unfortunately yes. Laughing

--A
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 01, 2015 7:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, at 130 pages in, I'm seriously thinking about giving up on a King book for the first time. After Jack's initial pointless 'adventure' in the Territories, I'm beginning to sense there's just nothing here. No likable characters. No interesting plot. And certainly not any good writing. It's even worse than Buick 8, which at least had an on-going mystery that keeps you wondering.

This is the worst example of Ignorance as Plot Device I've ever seen. No one can tell Jack anything. Speedy's only advice is telling him to find the Captain prior to beginning his journey, but it turns out that Captain Farren's sole purpose was to give Jack a coin which--you've guessed it--he can't tell him what it's for. This is like video game plot. Just horrible.

Is it worth finishing? Is the connection to DT significant?
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 01, 2015 9:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zarathustra wrote:

Is it worth finishing? Is the connection to DT significant?


I don't recall a single important Talisman thing for DT.
I also don't recall liking Talisman that much? Maybe I did during reading...but not looking back.
Black House was more connected...hell, I'd say it was more connected to DT than it was to Talisman in many ways.
I thought BH had better writing, and a bit less of the ignorance you really, really seem to hate Wink. But I don't know as I'd say the improvements were enough to make it a much better story/book.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 01, 2015 10:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Vraith wrote:
..the ignorance you really, really seem to hate Wink.
It shows, huh? Laughing

I just think it's the laziest trick in a writer's bag of tricks. I can't stand it. It's like the opposite or counterpart of a deus ex machina. Instead of some unexpected 'miracle' swooping to save the day and resolve the tension, it's an artificial way to manufacture completely unnecessary tension. It's so blatantly obvious that its only purpose is to keep the reader guessing with a false sense of mystery which wouldn't be a mystery if the characters who are trying to help the protagonist would stop withholding useful information. People only act this way in bad stories. People only accept such behavior from others in bad stories. Only bad stories need it to occur in the first place.

Most of the time, King does just the opposite: creating tension by telling you something that's going to happen, which you have no way of knowing in the normal course of the story's unfolding. That's ballsy. You read to find out how it happens, not because characters are being inexplicably cryptic.

Anyway, thanks for chiming in. I suppose I'll have to read this in order to read Black House. I'll just have to treat it as a study in how not to write a story.

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Meaning is created internally by each individual in each specific life: any attempt at *meaning* which relies on some kind of external superstructure (God, Satan, the Creator, the Worm, whatever) for its substance misses the point (I mean the point of my story). -SRD

Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 01, 2015 10:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Vraith wrote:
..the ignorance you really, really seem to hate Wink.
It shows, huh? Laughing

I just think it's the laziest trick in a writer's bag of tricks. I can't stand it. It's like the opposite or counterpart of a deus ex machina. Instead of some unexpected 'miracle' swooping in to save the day and resolve the tension, it's an artificial way to manufacture completely unnecessary tension. It's so blatantly obvious that its only purpose is to keep the reader guessing with a false sense of mystery which wouldn't be a mystery if the characters who are trying to help the protagonist would stop withholding useful information. People only act this way in bad stories. People only accept such behavior from others in bad stories. Only bad stories need it to occur in the first place.

Most of the time, King does just the opposite: creating tension by telling you something that's going to happen, which you have no way of knowing in the normal course of the story's unfolding. That's ballsy. You read to find out how it happens, not because characters are being inexplicably cryptic.

Anyway, thanks for chiming in. I suppose I'll have to read this in order to read Black House. I'll just have to treat it as a study in how not to write a story.

Confused
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Meaning is created internally by each individual in each specific life: any attempt at *meaning* which relies on some kind of external superstructure (God, Satan, the Creator, the Worm, whatever) for its substance misses the point (I mean the point of my story). -SRD

Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 02, 2015 12:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I haven't read it in a long while, but I remember liking it a lot. I've read nothing else by Peter Straub, but I remember attributing everything I didn't like about the book to him.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 02, 2015 5:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zarathustra wrote:
Is it worth finishing? Is the connection to DT significant?


I liked it. But there is no significant connection to DT at all. Black House on the other hand felt like it was deliberately written to create DT connections. Over-wrought in my opinion.

As for Straub, I've read a couple of his stand alone books. Not amazing, not terrible.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 02, 2015 3:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Over-wrought, huh? Maybe I'll just skip them both. After reading a little farther, to the point where Jack is hitch hiking across America, I can't ignore how stupid this plot is. With the fate of two worlds hanging in the balance, why didn't someone just buy the kid a plane ticket? Or perhaps tell him about his fateful quest while he was still in California, mere months ago? Speedy was obviously in California to save him at one time. If it's so damn important, why the hell are they trusting a 12-year-old to hike across a continent with virtually no help? This is the best plan they could come up with? A road atlas and 'best of luck to you'?? Or, "You're here to save our Queen? Awesome! Here's a coin. Now get outta here."

This is ridiculous.
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Meaning is created internally by each individual in each specific life: any attempt at *meaning* which relies on some kind of external superstructure (God, Satan, the Creator, the Worm, whatever) for its substance misses the point (I mean the point of my story). -SRD

Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2015 5:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hahaha, I think I have to read it again just to see it in this context. Very Happy

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