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Old 21st January 2005, 11:35 AM   #1 (permalink)
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The briar king

Well, I've read it now. honestly i didn't know what to expect, but i found it very run of the mill fantasy series. Is the series actualy finished yet ?
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Old 22nd January 2005, 10:04 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: The briar king

I dont think it's finished yet, though I do know book 2 has been released


I quite liked some of the mythical ideas behind the creatures and magic in The Briar King , I felt that did give it a slight different feel to most other fantasy books. However I did feel kingdom politics played too big a part in the story and found those parts really slowed the pace
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Old 23rd January 2005, 09:08 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: The briar king

I don't have a problem with 'politics' as for some reason they seem to elevate a plot if they're done well. I really like how (and I'm only halfway through so don't throw in any spoilers yet) the gryffin is different as well as the Briar King. So far no 'demonic-power-hungry-corrupted human' as 'big evil guy'. I kind of like the fact of the Briar King just wanting to sleep or die but also wanting to keep the forest living. Btw, I've just got off of work and they all treated me to shots for my (belated) birthday so this might not make sense.
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Old 24th January 2005, 10:36 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: The briar king

one thing i haven't worked out yet, with the corrupted names (greffen alves virgenia) is this possibly set in a post appocilyptic future of earth or maybe a medievil past? It seems deliberate, rather than just lazy.
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Old 24th January 2005, 02:03 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: The briar king

It does seem deliberate but I haven't figured out yet how it is supposed to be linked. Virginia Dare is a name from our own history so perhaps some sort of alternative type of thing.
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Old 25th January 2005, 03:03 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: The briar king

His other series is alternate history I think
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Old 25th January 2005, 12:44 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: The briar king

I finally finished it and had no real issues. Certainly the baselines of the plot are similar to other fantasies but from there it is quite different. I like the fact that not all the good guys magically escape from bad things. I also like the characters so far - no invincibles or stock characters other than the spoiled princess but I get the feeling that she will be changing just a little bit. The one character that is continually making me think is Austra. Not only is she stuck with trying to keep up with Anne but after all of that still doesn't even get instruction at the coven. I was a bit annoyed by that part. Of course, it makes sense that she doesn't but I was just personally offended that she didn't. Probably just me trying to live vicariously through her.
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Old 25th January 2005, 02:30 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: The briar king

While I rate the series so far very highly, one thing that gets old fast (though perhaps more so in the Charnel prince) is the irritating patois. I can see that "sceat" is a fair enough addition at a push, and Aspar's "werlic" is even endearing, but so many "yah"s and "Auy"s etc just get annoying. Probably just a pet hate of mine though. Also Cazio's country of origin (I forget the name) seems to be a farely casual pastiche of 16th century Spain.

Still, the Briar King remains high on my list of favorites, mostly because some of the characters are so well drawn. Aspar seems to be the best defined character in the author's imagination, but Neil, despite his constant carping on about duty, also has his moments (I liked the way at the end that he goes off to die singing). I was even hoping through most of the book that Carsek (the guy in the prologue) would make another appearance, but then given the story had moved on 2000 years I guess that was just wishful thinking
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Old 25th January 2005, 10:08 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: The briar king

um, niel didn't die. he was in bed next to simon, healing and appeared with the queen at court in the last chapter. and i must say, i rather equated the country to italy, not spain
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Old 25th January 2005, 10:34 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: The briar king

The Princess is, of course, right...or at least I agree with her.

Cazio definitely seemed to be rather Italian in his mannerisms. Which I quite liked.
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Old 25th January 2005, 11:27 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: The briar king

I meant rather that by that point he was expecting to die (though I may be mistaken even so, it's been a while), just didn't want to give anything away to people who hadn't got there yet
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Old 25th January 2005, 11:35 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: The briar king

don't worry babe, just ragging at ya.

and if you need to talk about specifics, just mark the post as
*******SPOILERS*************
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Old 26th January 2005, 02:28 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: The briar king

The Charnel Prince was really really good...I liked the new characters and the plotline is getting more twisted...Whoever finished The Briar King should definetly check that out.
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Old 26th January 2005, 05:43 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: The briar king

Is The Charnel Prince out in paperback yet? *crosses fingers*
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Old 26th January 2005, 06:39 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Re: The briar king

Charnel Prince just came out in hardbound recently, so it will be a while for paperback.

I think Cazio is definately Spanish. He reminds me very much of the spaniard in The Princess Bride. The best thing about this book is the character development. Even minor characters such as Cazio and Austra have great potential for springing forth and commanding a major role. The gritty fact that major players die(just like real life) make the story much more intense. The reader has a heightened sense of fear for the characters.

As to as the seeming similarities to our own history-I like it. Some are more subtle than "Virginia Dare" so it keeps me guessing as to whether or not he does it on purpose or is it just slap-dash world building. He has convinced me that he knows how to craft a story so I am willing to trust him and keep reading to find the answer.
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