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Commentary, then? Larry Send a noteboard - 02/04/2010 09:27:18 PM
Some of his complaints make no sense at all, and the others show him to possess an extreme amount of churlishness. At the end of this so called review, all he has done is repeat his issues with the series he had from day one.


Well, Roberts is known for his snark in reviews, which I did note when I posted this thread originally :P And yes, some of his complaints are repetitive, but perhaps some of those are due to certain perceived "defects" cropping up throughout the series? The prose certainly never gets to the "sparkling" level at any point that I recall; it did feel a bit padded throughout, to be honest. That is something that could be raised as a point about each individual volume. Whether you agree with it or not is a different matter :P

That might not be so bad, if he could in fact address them with respect to this current book. But he doesn't even do that. Where the first review complained about lifting from Tolkien, this one just focuses on some extremely thin similarities with Dune.


And for someone who admittedly read it hurriedly, that's grounds for dismissing his point that there are indeed those similarities? It's little different than reviewers of various epic fantasy works noting the similarities (and possible derivations) between works. Yes, it is quite likely RJ wanted to have those similarities in there to serve a different purpose than what Roberts appears to concede, but there are quite a few of them, if I recall.

And it goes on. The only difference is, this time he comes and says straight out that he barely glanced through the book:

I read the book fairly rapidly, but I look back on it now trying to remember what all this diverse running-around, collecting, fighting and so on amounted to.

Now some of this, I’ll confess, had to do with the rapidity of my reading of the book.

What is worse is his absurd idea of what "adult" character development is...

There are intimations of sex in the book, but instead of actual sex we get a load of schoolyard crushes, mooning about, kissing, jealousies and the occasional bottom-pinch.

Why the obsession with sex? Explicit portrayal of sex is not consistent with the mood and characters of the series at all!


I think it's more of a case where there is a more graphic description of warfare and suffering (and quasi-bondage scenes later in the series) than there is a deeper exploration of the coming-of-age issues that the characters have. The emotional/romance/love parts are perhaps a weak PG compared to the PG-13 to almost R-rated violence. That is something that is interesting, to say the least. But it's probably been discussed to death here over the years, I guess?

And then there's his grousing about the "words of wisdom" in the book, some of which were nothing of the sort, others which are clear in context and some which are clear on their own, but get mocked for the sake of mocking. Like:


"On the heights, the paths are paved with daggers." [43] Laid flat, this would surely result in a perfectly serviceable, if expensive, road. Laid edge-upwards, you’d probably want to walk alongside it rather than on it. Either way it seems self-defeating.

Really? His interpretation of this quote is... what? That literally paving a road with daggers is senseless?

If this is the kind of silly childish stuff a Cambridge professor can manage these days, the place must be going to the dogs. I'd give more kudos to the Lemmings of Discord over at Westeros. At least, they don't claim to be doing actual reviews, and end up being hilarious and still making good points.
Illusions fall like the husk of a fruit, one after another, and the fruit is experience. - Narrator, Sylvie

Je suis méchant.
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Author Adam Roberts tackled the WoT. - 19/03/2010 09:30:25 PM 9971 Views
A question for Larry - 19/03/2010 09:40:37 PM 2083 Views
Roberto Bolaño - 19/03/2010 11:09:57 PM 1849 Views
I completely agree with his review. - 19/03/2010 11:11:17 PM 2022 Views
Ouch! Somebody pull that guy off RJ! *NM* - 20/03/2010 03:47:07 AM 907 Views
Can't say that I really disagree. - 20/03/2010 05:19:26 AM 1397 Views
My problem with the reviews: - 20/03/2010 06:29:08 AM 1944 Views
Hear Hear !!! ....................... = ........................ *NM* - 20/03/2010 06:37:11 AM 881 Views
I agree - 20/03/2010 11:19:29 AM 1478 Views
You know what else I'm finding annoying? - 07/04/2010 07:29:37 AM 1414 Views
Fully Agree *NM* - 21/06/2010 12:41:05 AM 766 Views
well I agree and disagree - 20/03/2010 06:51:29 AM 1764 Views
Re: well I agree and disagree - 20/03/2010 02:12:43 PM 1309 Views
I'd say just The Eye of the World - 20/03/2010 05:26:19 PM 1300 Views
Indeed - 21/03/2010 12:34:19 AM 1313 Views
These reviews are pathetic - 20/03/2010 12:52:22 PM 1296 Views
I'm amused by some of the responses - 20/03/2010 07:20:03 PM 1652 Views
+1 *NM* - 20/03/2010 10:48:14 PM 866 Views
Are you suggesting that we are unqualified to disagree with him ? - 20/03/2010 11:21:44 PM 1471 Views
No, I said rather that it's ridiculous to make such disparaging comments about his takes - 20/03/2010 11:37:56 PM 1511 Views
I considered doing so - 21/03/2010 12:27:27 AM 1292 Views
I will reply to myself: What's the problem McFly , chicken ? - 21/03/2010 12:29:36 AM 1252 Views
My sister called me chicken once - 10/04/2010 01:18:31 AM 1291 Views
what's wrong runt... are you yellah? *NM* - 10/04/2010 10:40:16 AM 860 Views
NICE! *NM* - 10/04/2010 02:19:44 PM 721 Views
Re: I'm amused by some of the responses - 23/03/2010 04:50:42 PM 1384 Views
And I'm even more amused by this response - 24/03/2010 01:11:50 AM 1319 Views
Re: And I'm even more amused by this response - 24/03/2010 03:03:28 AM 1190 Views
Nah, TGS was the only serious review of the series I've done - 24/03/2010 04:31:28 AM 1233 Views
On a completely unrelated note... - 24/03/2010 06:15:25 AM 1104 Views
Ha! - 24/03/2010 06:34:48 AM 1254 Views
My congratulations then . *NM* - 24/03/2010 06:36:11 AM 1146 Views
You say it as if I had been condemned to hell! - 24/03/2010 07:13:45 AM 1066 Views
No. Well, maybe. - 24/03/2010 06:52:28 PM 1159 Views
! - 24/03/2010 06:54:34 PM 1219 Views
Re: Author Adam Roberts tackled the WoT. - 22/03/2010 02:47:23 PM 1270 Views
Re: Author Adam Roberts tackled the WoT. - 23/03/2010 01:53:16 PM 1279 Views
Wow, you guys have completely missed the point of the Wheel of Time series - 22/03/2010 05:28:07 PM 1331 Views
There's a point to it? - 22/03/2010 06:47:12 PM 1329 Views
I thought the point was to write about a bunch of stuff happening? - 09/04/2010 03:42:49 PM 1320 Views
Re: Author Adam Roberts tackled the WoT. - 23/03/2010 04:54:38 PM 1250 Views
pfft wth-ever - 26/03/2010 12:35:53 AM 1122 Views
Dude's been up for more awards for his writing than RJ ever was - 26/03/2010 12:28:19 PM 1356 Views
bla bla bla - 29/03/2010 06:17:07 AM 1219 Views
Usually, it's spelled "blah" - 29/03/2010 07:03:51 AM 1245 Views
Wow. That post was more entertaining than Mr. Roberts' review. Thank you *NM* - 29/03/2010 08:23:41 AM 1064 Views
You must have low standards for entertainment - 29/03/2010 08:54:03 AM 1208 Views
Re: You must have low standards for entertainment - 29/03/2010 09:13:44 AM 1319 Views
I know you were, thus the at the least of my comment - 29/03/2010 09:19:30 AM 1201 Views
Unimpressed - 29/03/2010 10:50:07 PM 1557 Views
Thank you - 30/03/2010 12:35:39 AM 1137 Views
*Standing ovation for DomA* - 30/03/2010 07:36:59 AM 1334 Views
Yes. Also, Roberts is a wanker. *NM* - 05/04/2010 09:28:57 PM 883 Views
Re: Dude's been up for more awards for his writing than RJ ever was - 29/03/2010 04:32:23 PM 1311 Views
Might want to re-read their Wikis again. - 29/03/2010 07:07:11 PM 1202 Views
Awards - 29/03/2010 07:42:03 PM 1186 Views
That link is out of date - 29/03/2010 07:54:56 PM 1157 Views
Re: That link is out of date - 29/03/2010 08:22:03 PM 1284 Views
This is a battle of win/lose? - 29/03/2010 08:47:54 PM 1210 Views
Re: This is a battle of win/lose? - 29/03/2010 09:03:07 PM 1267 Views
*considers employing the Chewbacca defense* - 29/03/2010 09:28:06 PM 1239 Views
Re: *considers employing the Chewbacca defense* - 29/03/2010 09:44:58 PM 1278 Views
The final point explains the "defense" - 30/03/2010 12:24:56 AM 1126 Views
Re: The final point explains the "defense" - 30/03/2010 01:33:04 PM 1124 Views
No, no, no - 30/03/2010 06:38:41 PM 1195 Views
Re: No, no, no - 30/03/2010 07:51:34 PM 1239 Views
Still continuing, huh? - 31/03/2010 02:10:13 AM 1241 Views
Re: Still continuing, huh? - 31/03/2010 03:56:57 PM 1160 Views
Those were polls - 31/03/2010 08:46:07 PM 1184 Views
Re: Those were polls - 05/04/2010 03:22:13 PM 1135 Views
Does it gives him right to insult me? - 13/04/2011 02:10:32 PM 1131 Views
I wouldn't know. Was he speaking directly to you? - 14/04/2011 11:28:16 PM 1291 Views
He's now reviewed the third book - 26/03/2010 12:27:16 PM 1359 Views
Well, this time I must disagree with him . - 29/03/2010 07:31:40 AM 1190 Views
I don't think he was claiming that RJ was alone in doing that - 29/03/2010 07:44:07 AM 1145 Views
Hah! - 29/03/2010 06:07:28 PM 1149 Views
Well... - 29/03/2010 06:52:10 PM 1140 Views
Differing perspectives, I guess. - 29/03/2010 07:58:13 PM 1212 Views
I suppose - 29/03/2010 08:50:43 PM 1150 Views
Re: I suppose - 30/03/2010 12:18:30 AM 1307 Views
True - 30/03/2010 12:23:28 AM 1152 Views
Hey, DomA, do you know why the Shienarans randomly speak in the Old Tongue? - 30/03/2010 12:52:01 AM 1058 Views
Re: Hey, DomA, do you know why the Shienarans randomly speak in the Old Tongue? - 30/03/2010 07:45:08 AM 1196 Views
But why only them? - 30/03/2010 08:07:00 AM 1221 Views
Re: But why only them? - 30/03/2010 03:56:54 PM 1169 Views
Re: But why only them? - 30/03/2010 08:29:37 PM 1258 Views
I really liked a lot of the minor characters in The Great Hunt. - 30/03/2010 12:49:03 AM 1231 Views
I barely thought twice about those, to be honest - 30/03/2010 06:39:55 PM 1209 Views
I can't wait what he's going to try to do with TFoH and beyond - 28/03/2010 08:18:59 PM 1249 Views
Glad you enjoyed it - 29/03/2010 09:33:43 PM 1086 Views
The Shadow Rising review - 02/04/2010 09:42:53 AM 1341 Views
I wonder if this borders on trolling - 02/04/2010 02:29:58 PM 9956 Views
You want complaining? You got it... - 02/04/2010 06:38:09 PM 1245 Views
That would be a mistake - 02/04/2010 09:16:25 PM 1416 Views
Re: That would be a mistake - 02/04/2010 10:28:56 PM 1137 Views
I agree, Roberts is more and more coming across to me as just bitter - 10/04/2010 01:24:52 AM 1279 Views
Little late to this one as well - 10/04/2010 11:12:04 AM 1325 Views
Perhaps you should have led with this bit - 10/04/2010 02:52:23 PM 1374 Views
Re: I wonder if this borders on trolling - 04/04/2010 09:16:22 AM 1219 Views
What review? I couldn't find one... - 02/04/2010 08:00:45 PM 1414 Views
Re: What review? I couldn't find one... - 02/04/2010 09:22:13 PM 1379 Views
See my comment below - 02/04/2010 09:32:54 PM 1371 Views
Re: See my comment below - 03/04/2010 09:31:22 AM 1797 Views
Sorry I'm late in responding, but I've been quite busy this week - 07/04/2010 09:45:48 PM 1600 Views
Yes, I can probably agree with what you say here. - 08/04/2010 12:29:16 AM 1101 Views
- 08/04/2010 12:32:53 AM 1190 Views
I agree completely. *NM* - 02/04/2010 09:53:44 PM 769 Views
Speaking of irritation - 02/04/2010 10:50:04 PM 1362 Views
Commentary, then? - 02/04/2010 09:27:18 PM 1192 Views
Here's the thing... - 02/04/2010 10:11:18 PM 1194 Views
Re: Here's the thing... - 02/04/2010 10:31:56 PM 1078 Views
Re: Here's the thing... - 03/04/2010 01:34:05 AM 1111 Views
I somehow overlooked this last week, it seems - 10/04/2010 11:01:17 AM 1392 Views
Indeed - 02/04/2010 10:34:00 PM 1064 Views
Re: Commentary, then? - 05/04/2010 03:44:07 PM 1155 Views
for a man that bitterly complains about an author who is padding his work - 08/04/2010 09:41:07 PM 1312 Views
1400 words is long-winded? - 09/04/2010 10:07:41 AM 1362 Views
since you can sum up those 1400 words in about 25 yes that's longwinded - 09/04/2010 01:36:16 PM 1228 Views
Except I didn't really sum it up, as I left out quite a bit - 10/04/2010 11:15:42 AM 1296 Views
You are very defensive over this - 10/04/2010 01:54:15 PM 1064 Views
Nah, more of a devil's advocate than anything else - 12/04/2010 03:57:12 AM 1148 Views
Re: Nah, more of a devil's advocate than anything else - 12/04/2010 05:30:53 PM 1075 Views
You sound like a Goodkind webmaster from a couple of years ago - 12/04/2010 06:58:42 PM 1157 Views
You don't come across as a devil's advocate - 30/03/2011 03:07:32 PM 1097 Views
Well Larry I have started reading Gradsil by Adam Roberts - 07/04/2010 08:59:28 PM 1260 Views
I demand a paragraph by paragraph review, with footnotes! - 07/04/2010 09:50:39 PM 1192 Views
Re: I demand a paragraph by paragraph review, with footnotes! - 08/04/2010 01:06:20 PM 1065 Views
Which Invisible Man? - 09/04/2010 09:58:44 AM 1266 Views
Re: Which Invisible Man? - 09/04/2010 01:26:42 PM 1168 Views
I have a very different take on that book - 10/04/2010 11:17:13 AM 1151 Views
Re: I demand a paragraph by paragraph review, with footnotes! - 09/04/2010 01:45:44 PM 1218 Views
Hrmm... - 10/04/2010 11:19:01 AM 1030 Views
Re: Well Larry I have started reading Gradsil by Adam Roberts - 12/04/2010 05:37:36 PM 1244 Views
He brings up some interesting points, if in an unnecessarily rude manner - 08/04/2010 12:42:25 PM 1202 Views
To be honest, I doubt most readers of the series obsess over it that much - 09/04/2010 10:05:49 AM 1225 Views
Re: To be honest, I doubt most readers of the series obsess over it that much - 09/04/2010 01:28:17 PM 1737 Views
Re: To be honest, I doubt most readers of the series obsess over it that much - 10/04/2010 11:40:22 AM 1144 Views
why are you so bothered by people being unimpressed with Roberts? - 10/04/2010 02:19:08 PM 1263 Views
I don't understand it either - 11/04/2010 12:44:25 PM 1223 Views
right? - 11/04/2010 02:13:00 PM 1237 Views
Nah - 12/04/2010 04:13:44 AM 1027 Views
And in vol. 5, Roberts discovers the horrors of the circus - 09/04/2010 09:57:03 AM 1155 Views
5 reviews without saying more than "I hate the series" - 09/04/2010 01:31:13 PM 1092 Views
Basically he just states the "nothing happens"-argument... - 09/04/2010 03:26:02 PM 1077 Views
Well, what was really resolved here? - 10/04/2010 11:25:25 AM 1091 Views
Well... - 12/04/2010 05:05:20 PM 1284 Views
well exactly - 12/04/2010 05:33:11 PM 1308 Views
So very little was resolved and much was set into motion, then? - 12/04/2010 06:55:45 PM 1256 Views
Yes... - 12/04/2010 10:51:08 PM 1045 Views
Ever read Umberto Eco's How To Travel with a Salmon? - 12/04/2010 11:07:19 PM 1250 Views
I guess... - 13/04/2010 10:03:03 AM 1305 Views
Sounds like you value prolixity for the sake of prolixity, to be honest - 13/04/2010 04:41:07 PM 2454 Views
Nah... - 13/04/2010 05:29:34 PM 1056 Views
He's read and enjoyed Proust, among others - 13/04/2010 07:37:39 PM 1103 Views
Ah, well... - 13/04/2010 09:45:45 PM 1077 Views
Dismissive, much? - 13/04/2010 10:52:30 PM 1224 Views
About that bifurcation... - 14/04/2010 02:02:15 AM 1192 Views
I'm rather moderate - 14/04/2010 10:11:30 AM 1102 Views
I'm just a liberation theologist at heart - 15/04/2010 01:51:16 PM 2030 Views
So, if you don't mind... - 13/04/2010 05:51:06 AM 1179 Views
That's fine with me - 13/04/2010 06:31:41 AM 1147 Views
I'm sorry, but he's totally right. "The Circus" made me put down this series for 5 YEARS. - 09/04/2010 03:38:16 PM 1163 Views
I didn't find it quite that bad, but... - 11/04/2010 08:27:52 AM 1068 Views
LoC represented a sharp drop in quality!!? - 19/05/2010 03:27:21 PM 1185 Views
And ignores everything else... - 09/04/2010 05:10:00 PM 1249 Views
Inchoatus went offline a couple of years ago - 10/04/2010 11:42:26 AM 2143 Views
This guy is going to get what he deserves... - 09/04/2010 10:26:14 PM 1155 Views
I'm waiting with bated breath for his CoT review *NM* - 10/04/2010 01:00:59 PM 857 Views
Just wanted to point out that he is not reviewing the series. - 16/04/2010 04:04:49 PM 1175 Views
Lord of Chaos commentary - 16/04/2010 03:39:39 PM 1181 Views
He has reached - The Hump. - 16/04/2010 03:55:51 PM 1142 Views
Re: He has reached - The Hump. - 18/04/2010 08:08:59 AM 1347 Views
No no. It was Lord of Heaven! - 16/04/2010 05:51:11 PM 1094 Views
Yeah, I noticed that - 16/04/2010 11:16:26 PM 1015 Views
I would love the see him review Goodkind... - 16/04/2010 11:51:07 PM 1193 Views
Finally re-read that post - 20/04/2010 09:35:45 PM 1136 Views
The magic items are mostly irrelevant... - 21/04/2010 03:37:36 AM 1152 Views
A Crown of Swords - or is it deco-porn? - 23/04/2010 08:36:17 AM 1254 Views
Re: A Crown of Swords - or is it deco-porn? - 29/04/2010 06:02:28 PM 1152 Views
I disagree - 29/04/2010 09:34:49 PM 1027 Views
I agree. - 29/04/2010 09:45:29 PM 1212 Views
Took me a moment to realize with whom you were agreeing - 29/04/2010 10:19:05 PM 1111 Views
Well, I did mention the necklines get overdone... - 06/05/2010 06:17:46 PM 1459 Views
Well, there's now also the tea to comment about - 07/05/2010 11:29:03 AM 1205 Views
A bit of a stumble this week - 30/04/2010 01:53:31 PM 1253 Views
The Path of Daggers commentary - 07/05/2010 10:39:03 AM 1238 Views
You'd think a Brit would like the tea... *NM* - 11/05/2010 04:05:42 PM 747 Views
Maybe he's just a contrarian? - 11/05/2010 07:55:43 PM 1083 Views
Winter's Heart - 21/05/2010 12:46:14 PM 1237 Views
To be fair - 21/05/2010 01:56:49 PM 1340 Views
I think WH was my least favorite of the WoT novels I re-read - 21/05/2010 04:49:31 PM 1138 Views
Re: I think WH was my least favorite of the WoT novels I re-read - 25/05/2010 05:05:09 PM 1329 Views
WH was my least favorite novel in the series, and that is saying a lot. - 28/05/2010 03:15:13 PM 1240 Views
I completely agree with his KoD post. Here is my favorite quote: - 28/05/2010 03:08:31 PM 1410 Views
CoT, you mean (link to actual post included) - 28/05/2010 04:56:10 PM 1255 Views
Yep, I meant COT. *NM* - 28/05/2010 07:02:48 PM 727 Views
Knife of Dreams - 18/06/2010 09:07:27 AM 1156 Views
Re: Knife of Dreams - 19/06/2010 05:49:38 AM 1227 Views
Agree... - 19/06/2010 05:08:44 PM 1216 Views
Roberts reflects back on WoT 1-11, with answers to questions asked of him - 25/06/2010 12:51:29 PM 1235 Views
This guy should be burned at the stake - 25/06/2010 03:22:34 PM 8629 Views
Are you done making a fool out of yourself, Mark? - 26/06/2010 06:53:37 PM 1186 Views
Oh come on... - 26/06/2010 09:06:01 PM 1312 Views
Well, the burning at the stake was a bit much... - 26/06/2010 10:19:40 PM 1297 Views
Well, really! You brought the comment to his notice... - 26/06/2010 11:34:08 PM 1255 Views
And your point is...? - 27/06/2010 12:37:00 AM 1338 Views
Well... - 27/06/2010 05:38:12 AM 1279 Views
Indeed... I think it's rather clear that Larry's goal has been to cause trouble - 27/06/2010 10:57:36 AM 1418 Views
There is no "borderline" about it. - 28/03/2011 05:17:15 PM 1158 Views
Ridiculous - 27/06/2010 06:38:46 AM 1188 Views
I like his FAQ and his overall musings on its' popularity. - 29/06/2010 06:35:10 PM 1259 Views
One year later... - 27/03/2011 03:40:29 AM 1171 Views
Re: One year later... - 28/03/2011 05:03:32 PM 1100 Views
I see you subconsciously support critical takes. - 28/03/2011 11:41:48 PM 1392 Views
No I conciously support telling you and him that you are pathetic, arrogent, & jelous. *NM* - 30/03/2011 01:40:36 PM 810 Views
Jealous? - 30/03/2011 05:20:32 PM 1154 Views
I agree, I didn't even notice it was an old post, definitely did not deserve to be revived. *NM* - 30/03/2011 02:41:12 PM 714 Views
Seconded. - 30/03/2011 04:04:36 PM 1051 Views
Now I notice as well that this is a year old. You're very silly, Larry, very silly. *NM* - 30/03/2011 04:13:38 PM 757 Views
Yep! - 30/03/2011 05:16:38 PM 1089 Views
Jeez Larry, you're starting to sound like a GRRM detractor. - 31/03/2011 03:01:38 PM 1189 Views
Nah, no detractor - 01/04/2011 03:00:41 PM 1303 Views
Could a thread be locked? - 31/03/2011 07:48:26 PM 1070 Views
Re: One year later... - 01/04/2011 02:55:02 AM 1343 Views
Yep - 01/04/2011 02:57:52 PM 1243 Views

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