Someone's going to kill me for this first one, but here goes...
Title: Cyrano de Bergerac
Author(s): I have forgotten, but it was a French name.
Genre: French Poetry (is that a genre? I have no idea...)
Short Summary: Cyrano de Bergerac is about a poet/swordsman with a huge nose and a brisk temper. He is unmatchable in a fight, and strongly maintains his values, like honor, courage, nobility, and chivalry. He is a great patron of the arts, and an excellent poet- but his quick temper and quicker sword mark him as an outcast of sorts in the society. The story is all about how Christian, a handsome, though brainless, young cadet wins the girl of Cyrano's dreams, Roxanne, with Cyrano's words- Cyrano, believeing himself to be too ugly to love, gives Christian the words to woo her.
Okay, so my summary was incredibly lame. I'm sorry, but trust me it's good. =)
Personal Opinion: I loved it. I relate to Cyrano, on an abstract deep level, and the ending scene was heartrending. I also love Cryano, or rather, I love the ideal he represents. The poetry was good, too- it captured my imagination, and was quite wonderful.
Author(s): Diana Wynn Jones
Short Summary: A girl most probably named Ann, a strange 'death-headed' man called Moricant, and an ancient time-warping alien device known as the bannus... at least, that's what the story pretends to be about. The bannus has been turned on by a foolish clerk from an off-world storage base, and now appears to have a mind of it's own. As inside the bannus field things "don't have to happen in the right order," Diana turns your perception of time around and then gives it a sharp yank, until she has you completely lost within the organization of time. A word to the wise: read this with a pencil and paper close at hand, and take notes on all the characters as you go. It'll save you a lot of trouble later on, as you start encountering the supposedly secondary characters again, but with a completely different point of view. It's complicated. Just read the book.
Personal Opinion: Once again, I loved it. I found myself needing to read it a second time, this time to take notes on everything that happened and figure it all out. The intense complexity of the plot was very exciting- I believe that it started, chronologically, in the middle of the story, and went on to tell you the end through the beginning. I think. I'm not entirely sure. Also, the way she introduced the same character several times in very different ways, and kept you from realizing for quite a while that it was the same character, was actually kind of scary. Even now I'm not sure I fully understand it- so I need someone else to read it and PM me, okay, so I can discuss it with someone else. =)
< Message edited by jerenda -- 7/15/2009 0:55:45 >