Discussion in 'Fan Town' started by Mala, Feb 6, 2016.
I assume "ALL THE TERRY PRATCHETT" is not a helpful recommendation. :::PPP
I've already read all the terry Pratchett. Which to be fair I should have mentioned.
I've also read all of Douglas Adam's books.
Those are sadly the only actually comedy things I know of because I don't strictly look for comedy. Except maybe Don Quixote I guess. The Kencyrath books are very comedic though, along with being soul crushing. They just aren't strictly comedies. Journey to the West and the Legend of the Condor Heroes series are also very funny books that aren't strictly comedies. Any of Alexandre Dumas' adventure novels fit this bill of "funny fantasy type thing" too.
I woke up at 3 AM today so my brain isn't functioning at the top of its game well enough to remember books that aren't actively on the shelf in my closet, but said shelf does notably contain The Tough Guide to Fantasyland in addition to all the Pratchett. (Plus some other books that are definitely not going to be labeled comedy, but do have a high snark quotient, like the Dresden Files, the Dragaera books, and aforementioned Brandon Sanderson collection. And the Enchanted Forest Chronicles, which are kids' books, but have a special place in my heart.)
For some reason the only other comedy-comedy author who's coming to mind right this minute is Carl Hiaasen, and the only thing of his I've read was Hoot like 15 years ago. Brain why.
I'm not brain good right now either and audible decided to rec me "The Economic Theory of Sex".
I'm going to relisten to some podcasts til I can figure out something to read that won't emotionally crush me.
Did you read either of Jenny Lawson's (aka The Blogess) autobiographical short story collections? I've read Let's Pretend This Never Happened and Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things. She does talk about mental illness in them, but they stories are often hilarious even so.
PG Wodehouse is light and silly.
Portuguese Irregular Verbs is another little short story collection about a German doctor of linguistics (I'd say professor normally, but he would be scandalized at the implication that he was expected to lecture) and very, very funny.
Tamora Pierce did an anthology, "Tortall and Other Lands" and a lot of those are fairly good for humor! Some of them do get a little deeper/darker, but they're still really good/funny, and I can give you a heads up if you go for it.
The Five-Minute Illiad by Greg Nagan is a great set of comedic reinterpretations of various classics.
The Bartimaeus books, by Jonathan Stroud, are technically aimed at older children/young teens but I utterly adore them. The eponymous character, Bartimaeus, is a 4000-year-old djinni and has a fantastically dry sense of humour. Chapters alternate between being narrated by him (with footnotes) and being tight third person perspective focused on his 13-year-old summoner, and the change of perspective sometimes lead to quite funny reveals of how flawed his view of events is.
Necroing this thread because I'm looking for audiobook recs now that I figured out my library allows borrowing them through an app. I'm badly in need of recs, because browsing the SF/Fantasy section mostly looks like this:
Which, uh, is not what I'm looking for.
I'm trying to get a wishlist together because almost everything I've searched has had two or three holds on it before I can check it out, so, anybody got audiobook suggestions?
Have you read Ancillary Justice yet? I know it's available as an audiobook and it's amaaazing.
Cinnamon and Gunpowder isn't fantasy per se but has a fantasy feel. A pirate kidnaps a chef and tells him he has to cook a fantastic meal for her once a week or she'll kill him.
I have indeed. I'd put the sequels on the list, but I worry about my ability to keep the names straight in audio.
I found the ancillary sword+mercy audiobooks pretty easy to follow! The author does a good job of reminding the reader who people are in the text, past just the names.
And, they're short and i don't know if they're audiobooks, but i just addressed my desperate hunger for more ancillary justice with the murderbot diaries books. Again, they're short, but MAN do I love them.
That series mostly just put me off tea.
-THE EXPANSE (james s. a. corey, basically a murder mystery in space)
-adding to the recs for the ancillary series
- "ninefox gambit" & the following novels, by yoon ha lee, are pretty good!
-alastair reynolds has some good (very hard) sf stuff: try "blue remembered earth" for space stuff, "revelation space" for some interesting takes on posthumanism & alien encounters, & "terminal world" for sf gone into fantasy
-jack mcdevitt is also good. both of his ongoing series are good; the academy series deals with spaceflight & the like more than the other, which does a lot of future archaeology
-the expanse again bc i will ALWAYS shill the expanse
e.I HAVE MORE
-the deepgate series, by alan campbell (a series about gods who are dickholes & the people that have to clean up after them. lotta tws in this one)
-going back to alastair reynolds: "the prefect" & "elysium fire" are 2 of my faves by him. cops in space is My Thing as is the whole clockmaker dealio
-china mieville. weird dude, weird books, just fuckin all around weird in the best way. "railsea" is great
-cherie priest: alternate history where the american civil war didn't end when it did. steampunk as heck & also fun
-"the drowned cities" by paolo pacigalupi: postapoc world where Things Are Bad
Oh, we're doing recs, eh?
I should just say that I gravitate towards the dark and harrowing, or at least stuff laced with black humour. Not exclusively (I am a huge Pratchett fan after all), but a lot of the time there's going to be at least a thread of ow in 'em.
* The Malazan Book of The Fallen, by Steven Erikson. I made another thread about this - it's a humungous fantasy series, big and tark and passionate, not for the faint-hearted. Think ASOIAF squared in terms of intensity and grit and general grimdarkitude, but with a hell of a lot more sorcery and demons, and a vasty wider emotional range.
* The Laundry files series by Charles Stross. It combines eldritch horrors, spy-procedural and IT support. If you've ever read any Len Deighton, you've got the tone: Dingy British secret service bureaucracy managing to feel slightly postwar even in the 21st century - in a world where magic is just a branch of computation, and stumbling on the wrong algorithms can summon demons from adjacent dimensions that proceed to eat your brain. It's full of dry humour and a great deal of fun.
* Iain M. Banks Culture series is... imagine if Douglas Adams hung out with the wrong crowd in his youth. Suppose you're a post-scarcity techno-utopia run by godlike benign-overlord AIs (who you can all mentally voice as Steven Fry), in a galaxy crammed with distinctly less-civilised neighbours who do insist on being... unpleasant. Do you ignore the suffering they create, do you strong-arm them into behaving better but give up the high-road in doing so.... or do you create a semi-deniable Dirty Tricks Department to stealthily put the boot in where needed, without overtly condoning that sort of thing? Lots of black humour, lots of fucking-awesome tech.
* Mark Lawrence's Prince of Thorns and sequels. Dark DARK dark dark. TW: sexual and other abuse. Protagonist is an unrepentant vicious little bastard, but a very charismatic vicious little bastard - and it's told through a sympathetic (obviously) first-person viewpoint. He's the disfavoured young heir to a sort-of mediaeval kingdom in a world where reality went off the rails and didn't go back on entirely straight, and he's fallen in with a gang of bandits. You basically need to be able to laugh at and one-up dead-baby jokes if you want to read this - but if you can, it's quite amazing.
* Mark Lawrence's Red Sister series is much happier; almost YAish, in fact. It's still a hell of a lot of fun - intrigue and backstabbing involving shaolin-style nuns on a doomed frozen world circling a dying star, plus some hairy magic-stuff in there too.
* R. Scott Bakker's Prince of Nothing series. Another one for the super-grimdark pile, with tinges of horror. The setting is something akin to ancient Persia, the plot something of a clusterfuck battle-royale between empires, religions, competing schools of sorcery, an order of thoroughly OP mystics and an ancient horrible evil. The magic system is unique and mindblowing, the OP mysticism even moreso - there are some real holy-fuck moments in there.
* Neal Stephenson's Anathem. I'm not a huge fan of Stephenson since he got into historical-fiction stuff, but this one is pure glorious SF. Cloistered monasteries for mathematicians, to cut down the rate of disruptive technological change (and worse). This book is so much fun.
Lots of other stuff I can think of, but much of it terribly old, like me. If anyone wants older recs, lemme know.
Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin. It's good, but it's also dark and takes place in a world where some people have magic powers that let them control energy - specifically temperature (indirectly) and the movement of the earth (directly). There's racism, castism, and a good look at what happens if you're brought up being told that your powers are a curse that, if you're lucky and good, you might be able to use to help your betters. It's also a story with three different viewpoints in three different time periods, all interleaved with each other (and one perspective is in second-person, present tense while the others are in third-person past tense). The name comes from the world's seasonal cycle: spring, summer, fall, winter...and the fifth season, where the world ends (however briefly) and society's rules are suspended in favour of whatever needs to be done to survive the calamity that's happening.
I recently enjoyed A Plague of Giants by Kevin Hearne and City of Lies by Sam Hawke.
hey, do you like horror? do you like horror that has aspects of parody to it? do you like horror that goes so far in parodying that it fuckin alters the way the book itself looks?
then you'll love horrorstor! a book parodying ikea and all stores like it, it's about a group of workers at an off-brand ikea staying overnight to find out just who it is that keeps messing with their floor models!
i just finished it and its so good, fantastic. however, i have to warn for psychological trauma, gore, and general fucked upness once Shit Gets Real. it even managed to make me shudder, and im pretty hardcore. it's a REAL good book, though, and pretty short!
I just finished Gnomon by Nick Harkaway and
pinging like ALL my "things i like in fiction" particularly "fantastically complicated plots" and "extremely good sci fi."
Mom described it as "if Cloud Atlas and Inception had a baby" which I concur with although I would also toss some 1984 frosting on there.
basic plot: near future. A system known as The Witness surveys/controls basically everything, but it's pretty damn benevolent. Occasionally interrogations are performed to get info about crimes and whatsuch by basically taking an image of the brain that can then be experienced by someone else. Usually, these cause no lasting damage, and in fact people leave with a complimentary mental tune-up that leaves them feeling nice and spry!
Except that a woman died during an interrogation. So our protagonist the Inspector goes to experience her brain recording and slowly comes to the conclusion that THERES LIKE FOUR WHOLE OTHER ACTUAL??? PEOPLE IN HERE with their own whole sets of memories and life experiences WHAT THE FRESH HECK.
everything pretty much snowballs from there in the ABSOLUTE BEST SORT OF WAY.
in conclusion: ITS REALLY GOOD OMG
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