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The Bookish Owl – Moving Pictures by Terry Pratchett

Moving Pictures by Terry Pratchett

Lights! Camera! Action! It’s Moving Pictures by Terry Pratchett.

This has always been my least favorite Discworld book, but I did like it a little better upon rereading it. I do, however, think it could have been vastly improved by more scenes with the wizards. Especially since this is the book that introduces Archchancellor Ridcully, my favorite wizard and nightmare boss. But then again, there’s only so many times the poor Bursar can be nearly shot by his new boss before he loses it, and he did deserve to keep his sanity, at least until the end of the book…

But the mental image of most of Unseen University’s faculty clinging to to Windle Poon’s racing wheelchair while screaming their heads off was amazing, and I could have used more of that. Compared to that, Victor just wasn’t that interesting a main character.


Moving Pictures
by Terry Pratchett

‘Holy wood is a different sort of place. People act differently here. Everywhere else the most important things are gods or money or cattle. Here, the most important thing is to be important.’

People might say that reality is a quality that things possess in the same way that they possess weight. Sadly alchemists never really held with such a quaint notion. They think that they can change reality, shape it to their own purpose. Imagine then the damage that could be wrought if they get their hands on the ultimate alchemy: the invention of motion pictures, the greatest making of illusions. It may be a triumph of universe-shaking proportions. It’s either that or they’re about to unlock the dark terrible secret of the Holy Wood hills – by mistake…


Moving Pictures by Terry Pratchett

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The Bookish Owl – The City of Brass by S. A. Chakraborty

City of Brass by S. A. Chakraborty

This time it’s The City of Brass by S. A. Chakraborty.

First off, I want to say that this book has great characters, amazing worldbuilding and the plot is also just fine.

Which is why I have absolutely no idea why it took me 300 pages to get into it. It just didn’t do it for me for a long time, but as soon as I hit that 300 page mark it suddenly became insanely exciting and before I knew it, I had devoured the rest of the book and ordered the sequel.

‘The City of Brass’ is filled with djinn, ifrits and other creatures from Arabic folklore, and all the political drama you could wish for. None of the subplots were resolved in this book, so I have great hopes that the next book in the trilogy sheds some light on a few of the mysteries. And of course there was also a total cliffhanger at the end, so I really have no choice but to read on, do I?


The City of Brass
by S. A. Chakraborty

Nahri has never believed in magic. Certainly, she has power; on the streets of 18th century Cairo, she’s a con woman of unsurpassed talent. But she knows better than anyone that the trade she uses to get by—palm readings, zars, healings—are all tricks, sleights of hand, learned skills; a means to the delightful end of swindling Ottoman nobles.

But when Nahri accidentally summons an equally sly, darkly mysterious djinn warrior to her side during one of her cons, she’s forced to accept that the magical world she thought only existed in childhood stories is real. For the warrior tells her a new tale: across hot, windswept sands teeming with creatures of fire, and rivers where the mythical marid sleep; past ruins of once-magnificent human metropolises, and mountains where the circling hawks are not what they seem, lies Daevabad, the legendary city of brass, a city to which Nahri is irrevocably bound.

In that city, behind gilded brass walls laced with enchantments, behind the six gates of the six djinn tribes, old resentments are simmering. And when Nahri decides to enter this world, she learns that true power is fierce and brutal. That magic cannot shield her from the dangerous web of court politics. That even the cleverest of schemes can have deadly consequences.

After all, there is a reason they say be careful what you wish for… 


City of Brass by S. A. Chakraborty

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The Bookish Owl – Arthas by Christie Golden

Arthas by Christie Golden

It’s Warcraft time, with Arthas by Christie Golden!

I read this when it was first released, many years ago, but it was nice to revisit the story of Prince Arthas Menethil, and his transition into the Lich King, the leader of an undead army set on erasing all life on Azeroth. It’s one of the main storylines in both Warcraft 3 and World of Warcraft, and I have played the franchise since I was 10 years old, so I might be a little obsessed with its lore.

Plus: Zombies.


Arthas: Rise of the Lich King
by Christie Golden

His evil is legend. Lord of the undead Scourge, wielder of the runeblade Frostmourne, and enemy of the free peoples of Azeroth. The Lich King is an entity of incalculable power and unparalleled malice — his icy soul utterly consumed by his plans to destroy all life on the World of Warcraft.

But it was not always so. Long before his soul was fused with that of the orc shaman Ner’zhul, the Lich King was Arthas Menethil, crown prince of Lordaeron and faithful paladin of the Silver Hand.

When a plague of undeath threatened all that he loved, Arthas was driven to pursue an ill-fated quest for a runeblade powerful enough to save his homeland. Yet the object of his search would exact a heavy price from its new master, beginning a horrifying descent into damnation. Arthas’s path would lead him through the arctic northern wastes toward the Frozen Throne, where he would face, at long last, the darkest of destinies.


Arthas by Christie Golden

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The Bookish Owl – Pyramids by Terry Pratchett

Pyramids by Terry Pratchett

It’s time for assassins and disgruntled mummies with Pyramids by Terry Pratchett.

You didn’t think I was done with Discworld, did you?

I only have a few books left to finish my reread of this entire series, but I’m pacing myself. Running out of Pratchett books is one of the biggest problems I face in my reading life, so I’m rereading even those books that weren’t among my favorites the first time around. Pyramids doesn’t have the greatest story or characters, but it does have some pretty funny scenes. There’s Teppic getting ready for his Assassin’s exam and then promptly falling over from the weight of all the weapons he’s hidden on his person. And then there’s his prophetic dreams:

“There was seven fat cows and seven thin cows. One of them was playing the trombone.”

What the book needed was more Assassins. But considering I own two pairs of Assassin’s Guild socks, I might be bias…


Pyramids
by Terry Pratchett

It’s bad enough being new on the job, but Teppic hasn’t a clue as to what a pharaoh is supposed to do. After all, he’s been trained at Ankh-Morpork’s famed assassins’ school, across the sea from the Kingdom of the Sun. First, there’s the monumental task of building a suitable resting place for Dad — a pyramid to end all pyramids. Then there are the myriad administrative duties, such as dealing with mad priests, sacred crocodiles, and marching mummies. And to top it all off, the adolescent pharaoh discovers deceit, betrayal – not to mention a headstrong handmaiden – at the heart of his realm. 


Pyramids by Terry Pratchett

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Of Bathtimes and Murderous Owls

Wet Owl Bath

Ever since the leg amputation, Artemis the owl has been doing remarkably well. He does, however, have trouble scratching away the loose feathers on his head. So what does a good owl momma do?

She gives him a bath, then take pictures of how absolutely pathetic he looks.

Wet Owl Bath

He looks like something you pull out of a blocked sewage pipe.

He also looks like someone who will kill me in my sleep, but I swear to you that he made his ‘happy sounds’ while he was drying in his cage, so I’m fairly sure it’s just the only expression available to a bird that’s mostly eyes and beak. If not, I might regret watching a lot of ‘How to Get Away With Murder’ with him…

He should be happy I didn’t  try to blowdry him. He would have ended up looking like a murderous Pomeranian and nobody wants that.

(Okay… Maybe I want to see it just a little bit…)

But it turns out that a lot of people relates strongly to the feelings portrayed in this photo, if the responses on Twitter are anything to go by. ‘Wet furious owl’ got ten times as many likes and comments as any of my new book announcements. It’s slightly depressing, but Artemis will always be the star of the show.