Otherland

Discussion in 'Tad Williams' started by Gnome, Sep 22, 2003.

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    Gnome

    Gnome Eldest & Most Wise

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    Has anyone read the "Otherland" series by Tad Williams?
    I'm just looking for opinions before invest the time. Looks intriguing but I'm not familiar with the author.
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    dwndrgn

    dwndrgn Fierce Vowelless One Staff Member

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    I haven't read that one specifically but I have read that author, I read the Memory, Sorrow and Thorn series and enjoyed that, but that is his fantasy work. Otherland is one of his sci-fi ones and I just haven't been interested enough to pick it up. I enjoy his writing but I've found many people consider him lukewarm at best though I'm not sure why.
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    Marianne

    Marianne Nanny

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    Tad Williams

    I read the Otherworld series and thought it was very good. I just finished War of the Flowers which was very entertaining...tongue in cheek and quite a switch from Otherland. I recommend both.
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    dwndrgn

    dwndrgn Fierce Vowelless One Staff Member

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    I'm not familiar with War of the Flowers, what is it about?
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    Brian Turner

    Brian Turner Brian G. Turner Staff Member

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    My girlfriend read the Otherland series over the summer - she really enjoyed most of it. She had problems with the gender stereotypes in Strange in a Strange Land (she actually didn't finish it) and didn;t like the emotional detachment of 2001.

    She liked the characters, the plot, and most of what happens - she only disliked a little in the second book, I believe it is, because she thought a couple of the character worlds created made little sense. But she's recommended it to me.

    I had a quick look - engaging style you'd expect from a successful commerical work.
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    Marianne

    Marianne Nanny

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    War of the Flowers

    It is a very thick, stand alone novel about a man from our world that crosses over into Fairie and all the interesting folk he meets and the adventures he has trying to get back to his own world. I was highly entertained.
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    dwndrgn

    dwndrgn Fierce Vowelless One Staff Member

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    You had me at thick...I'm a sucker for a really long novel. I'll have to add that to my 'can my little library possibly have this one?' List.

    Dawn "the library lurking" Dragon
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    Twelve

    Twelve Spirit of Zebulun

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    Dang-gone-it...why am I always the odd ball in these threads?

    I bought all four books of the Otherland and found them to be so, so, so, boring.

    Now, please understand that I'm a HUGE Tad Williams fan. He's my favorite fantasy writer of all, due to my immense love for his Memory, Sorry, and Thorn series.

    But the Otherland series was...like I said, boring. I simply find giant bugs to be corny...like something out of Alice in Wonderland.

    Almost every fight scene ends the same way...either the speaker passes out, of there is a big explosion and you can't see anything, or people run away. And then he ends the chapter, and you can't know what's happening to your character until 5 chapters later..sometimes more.

    Much talking...much discussion...much mumbo-jumbo about things that are just TOO fantastic.

    However, I give Tad Williams props for having the most realistic child character I've ever read in Otherland. George R.R. Martin can take some serious lessons in that regard.

    Tad is brilliant when it comes to fantasy...but his sci-fi is skills are a bit weak, in my opinion. Thank God, he's going back to fantasy now.

    12
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    Brian Turner

    Brian Turner Brian G. Turner Staff Member

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    Odd-ball is good. :)

    I like the fact that there are definite different interests around here. It would be so boring if our tastes agreed too much. :)
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    dwndrgn

    dwndrgn Fierce Vowelless One Staff Member

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    'Variety is the spice of life'
    Absolutely true. Who wants to live in Vanillaville? Yuck. Gimme a good discussion and a cup o joe and I'm good...(well, as long as I've got a book waiting somewhere in the background [​IMG])


    Dawn "That's not an argument!" Dragon
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    Twelve

    Twelve Spirit of Zebulun

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    Ahhhhhh....so THAT'S what your name means. Every time I see "dwndgrn", I automatically try to pronounce it, and I come away with something like "dowondergin" or something. Now that I know that it's "Dawn Dragon", things are a whole lot easier.

    12
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    dwndrgn

    dwndrgn Fierce Vowelless One Staff Member

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    I'm so relieved that I'm being pronounced correctly now...[​IMG] Although I have to say that 'dowondergin' sounds pretty cool...maybe a unique and eclectic background character in a novel...
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    GOLLUM

    GOLLUM Moderator Staff Member

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    Hi there!

    I noticed you're from Basel. Are you swiss born or working in Switerzland? The only reason I ask is that I'm from sunny Australia but because my father is French swiss from Kanton Bern, I'm a swiss citizen and have lived twice in Switzerland in Zurich. I speak German as a second language.

    Ok back to the topic, I'm also a major Tad Williams fan and basically read all of his stuff. I agree that Otherland is not as well handled as M,S,T which I think is his best work to date IMHO. However Otherland is his most ambitious project to date and for that he should be applauded.

    I'm currently enjoying Shadowmarch, a welcome return to High fantasy for Tad.

    All the best!

    Tschuss!!:D :D
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    Rahl Windsong

    Rahl Windsong Last of the Windsong Clan

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    I have read the first book in this series and I really feel this story should be required reading for any online game designer as "food for thought". While the technology does not exist the way Tad Williams described it in this story the ideas are very good ones that should make the game designer think "outside of the box" so to speak. Good stuff I realy enjoyed it.

    Rahl
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    rune

    rune rune

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    I found this series too complicated and hence that spoiled it for me. There were some good ideas, and it's very visual. However I think William's tried for a lot in the technology side and it came over too sci-fi for me.
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    Leto

    Leto Outside

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    Since it's a sci-fi novel, that's quite logical no ?
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    GOLLUM

    GOLLUM Moderator Staff Member

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    hi again Leto!

    Yep it's certainly more of a sci fi than fantasy novel.

    Although it doesn't always come together I greatly admire Tad for taking such a major project on in the first place.
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    rune

    rune rune

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    It's advertised as both and since Tad Williams mostly writes fantasy I can understand why I first thought it would be a fantasy series.
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    Rane Longfox

    Rane Longfox Red Rane

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    I would agrue that it's neither science fiction or fantasy... but I guess sci-fi is the closest you could come to categorising it easily. Very confusing series. In fact, none of my current to-read pile appeals to me after I've finished Pandora's Star, so I'm thinking of re-reading this soon. Who knows;)
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    GOLLUM

    GOLLUM Moderator Staff Member

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    Yep Tad classifies it as a series that will appeal to both SCi Fi and Fantasy fans so I guess it's really a hybrid of these.

    Several critics/reviewers like to describe it at a basic level as a "cyber punk" novel.

    Bye for now.:D

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