Over the course of the past three years I’ve been doing this blog, fans have sent me all sorts of goodies: cards, cookies, chocolate, chestnuts, pictures, lint rollers, shirts, videos, CD’s and the occasional highly recommended read. About a year ago, someone (Please, refresh my memory whoever you are) sent me a pack of books. Among the selection sat The Misenchanted Sword by Lawrence Watt-Evans, a title that has since sat on my ever-growing To Read pile.
Well, the other day I was looking for a suitable December book of the month club pick when my gaze fell on The Misenchanted Sword – something a little different from the usual straight SF and fantasy we‘ve been reading. While doing a little online research, I came across several rave reviews that described it as an underrated and underappreciated gem. And that was good enough for me.
So, who’s up for a little humor?
The Misenchanted Sword, by Lawrence Watt- Evans
From the publisher: “The old wizard wasn’t exactly happy with Valder, who’d led his enemy to his hut. Now hut and magical supplies were destroyed. But he’d promised the young scout a magic sword to get him safely back to his own lines — and a much enchanted sword Valder would get!
The resulting sword gave perfect protection — sometimes! It could kill any man — or even half demon. In fact, once drawn, it had to kill before it could be put down or sheathed.
Army wizards told Valder that the sword would keep him alive until he’d drawn it 100 times; then it would kill him! It wouldn’t prevent his being wounded, maimed or cut to pieces, but it wouldn’t let him die. If his new job as Chief Assassin for the army didn’t make him use up the spell, he’d be practically immortal.
Not bad, it seemed. There had to be a catch somewhere.
There was — and it was a lulu!”
Discussion begins the week of December 8th with author Lawrence Watt-Evans.
And a reminder that November’s book of the month club fast approaches. The week of November 9th, we’ll be discussing Emnissaries from the Dead and author Adam-Troy Castro will be dropping by to answer your questions. This one sounds VERY intriguing.
From the Publisher: “Two murders have occurred on One One One, an artificial ecosystem created by the universe’s dominant AIs to house several engineered species, including a violent, sentient race of sloth-like creatures. Under order from the Diplomatic Corps, Counselor Andrea Cort has come to this cylinder world where an indentured human community hangs suspended high above a poisoned, acid atmosphere. Her assignment is to choose a suitable homicide suspect from among those who have sold their futures to escape existences even worse than this one. And no matter where the trail leads her she must do nothing to implicate the hosts, who hold the power to obliterate humankind in an instant.
But Andrea Cort is not about to hold back in her hunt for a killer. For she has nothing to lose and harbors no love for her masters or fellow indentures. And she herself has felt the terrible exhilaration of taking life . . . . “
Ladies and gentlemen, start your reading engines!
Now, let’s play some catch-up with the mailbag:
Tawny writes: “Have you read any of Robin Hobbs’ books? If so, what did you think?”
Answer: Nope but I’ve been eyeing that copy of Assassin’s Apprentice sitting on my bookshelf. A potential Book of the Month Club selection?
Kuro-Syamito writes: “i heard that Atlantis movie will be canceled and instead a novel will be release. is it true?”
Answer: I haven’t heard anything about this.
Littleravenhawk writes: “Joe…I was wondering if you have ever read any young adult fantasy….not including Harry Potter?”
Answer: I’ve read the Series of Unfortunate Events books.
Deni writes: “Wait a minute, when did Chloe and Scott start having a “thing”?”
Answer: Das did a wonderful job of answering this question (check the October 23rd comments). In short, Chloe lost her father. Scott nearly lost his life. They bonded at the end of Air III. Facing seemingly imminent death in Darkness and Light, they chose to consummate their burgeoning relationship.
Gwen writes: “Chloe tries to sleep her way to a shuttle ride…”
Answer: And what sort of skewed logic is this based on? The fact that two people connect, are attracted to each other, and make love? You know, it does happen in the real world.
Gwen also writes: “Eli goes straight from “how could you do this” to “let’s cuddle”?”
Answer: Eli is disappointed because he has feelings for Chloe. Again, this is something that happens in the real world – one friend falling for another. Are you suggesting that Eli scuttle the friendship simply because Chloe doesn’t feel the same way about him? A little immature, no?
Gwen also writes: “And for a character who’s supposed to be devoutly religious, Scott doesn’t seem to have issues with committing to a monogamous relationship.”
Answer: Again, you’re applying some strident black and white notions to these characters. They’re flawed, like a lot of people out there. It may come as a shock to you but I know many individuals who have wrestled with their faith or found ways to compromise their belief system with their way of life.
Gwen also writes: “I’m really impressed with the speed of their shuttle though; it was able to make it to the far side of the star, hit the planet’s orbital path, turn around, be unable to intercept the ship on it’s own, but then by turning around again and killing all it’s momentum, perform a slingshot and be able to perform an intercept then.”
Answer: Yep. Physics is weird, no?
Thailog writes: “What is up with the Atlantis movie being nixed in favor of a novel? Momoa also said that the SG1 movie was probably going to be made eventually but the Atlantis movie is dead. No comment? Still?”
Answer: Still no official word. We’ve written the script (Stargate: Extinction) and I’ve maintained a positive outlook throughout. That being said, as time has worn on with no official word, I don’t blame people for being pessimistic.
StellaByStargate writes: “Considering the success of SGU, especially with those Bavarian kale farmers, is there likely to be any positive fallout with regard to getting the two pending movies in the queue? And I’m curious how long it would take to set up a shooting schedule once the go-ahead is given (see…I’m thinking positive!) ?”
Answer: I’m not in on the decision-making with regard to if and when the movies will be made. Still, it’s unlikely that SGU’s success will influence the movies. Establishing the shooting schedule would depend on many things (actor availability, time needed for set construction, prep, etc.) that I wouldn’t be able to ballpark at present.
Mary writes: “she’s a manipulative whore (not a word I use very often).”
Answer: Based on what? ALL the men she’s slept with? Let’s see, there’s Scott..and…Scott…and…oh, yeah! Scott!
Mary also writes: “To play with Eli’s emotions after having sex with Scott is just plain wrong.”
Answer: How is she playing with his emotions? Are you suggesting that they should no longer be friends because Eli has feelings for her?
T’loc writes: “It can do all that but it can not turn around to take the folks back to earth nor can it take them to stargates that could take them home, strange.”
Answer: The crew doesn’t have control of the ship. As Rush stated early on, they’re just along for the ride. IF they do manage to gain control of the ship, then they certainly could turn the ship around and head back to Earth. It should only take them several million years.
Shadow Step writes: “In the interest of spreading world peace, I feel compelled to point out that clearly “ignorant” wasn’t the word EFroh was striving for in his missive (hey, we can’t all be writers), perhaps you stopped after the first line, but the rest of the text suggested that “pampered” would be more along the lines of what he meant – perhaps his own mother had to pawn her lungs before she could get help.”
Answer: Really? Then by that logic his mother was positively coddled in comparison to people in third world countries who don’t even have the luxury of pawning their lungs in exchange for their lives. Yep, when you look at it that way, he and his mom should be thanking their lucky stars rather than complaining. Taking this a sidestep further, when you consider that many people in this world don’t even own a t.v., you should be grateful for the programming you’re fortunate enough to view instead of express any concerns you may feel about a particular show’s creative direction. Looking forward to receiving nothing but positive feedback from you in the near future.
Mary A. Milan writes: “Daughter Jennifer wants to know when you started writing fiction/scripts.”
Answer: I was writing short stories back in elementary school. Also, a terrible scifi novel.
Belouchi writes: “ 1.Will our SGU cast ever fix the broken shuttle in season 1?
2. Sorry for being repetitive: Is the Destiny as big as a Hive?
3. In the Milky Way and Pegasus, did the ancients terraform all the planets with stargates and those off the grid. I say this because we have yet to see similar planets in the galaxy the destiny is presently in?”
Answers: 1. Perhaps. 2. I don’t know. I’ve never considered the ship’s size relative to other franchise ships. 3. Not sure I understand the question.
Tammy Dixon writes: “My question for her is, why is she hooking up with Scott and then being very friendly with Eli?”
Answer: Why not? Are you saying a woman who is in a romantic relationship with a man can’t have male friends?
Thornyrose writes: “So, if you start spinning season two, when exactly does your share of the hiatus start? When would season two begin filming once the renewal is confirmed?”
Answer: The hiatus officially begins at the end of this week once we’ve finished shooting – but post-production work continues well into 2010 so we’ll be around watching cuts and mixes and, of course, spinning season 2. As for when we would start shooting the show’s second season (pending a pick-up): sometime after the winter Olympics.
Cherluvya writes: “When do you find out if the show is picked up for Season 2?”
Answer: Soon hopefully.
JYS writes: “it was cool seeing you two at Fuel today”
Answer: That pasta dish was truly awesome. I’ll be doing the full write-up in tomorrow’s post. BTW – Martin and I were looking to say goodbye on our way out but you had disappeared.
Crazymom1 writes: “Have I got this right: Spencer is the one who was stealing food earlier on, and now he’s taking medication TJ doesn’t know about?”