September 9, 2011

The Life Of A Swordsman

Barely have I finished The Darkness That Comes Before that I'm already plunging into another book. Well, technically, I'd already dived into my current book, Lev Grossman's The Magician King, when I decided to do a side trip along Bakker's shores.

But fear not!  It's not because I don't like TMK. Au contraire! I actually find this adult fairy tale (for it has all the elements of one, truly), and its sarcastic undertone. I suppose Harvard and Yale do produce excellent products, such as this writer...

     'A frigid spitting mist was blowing in from the ocean. [Quentin] could see After Island clearly now; they'd be landing soon. He decided he was done. He should at least change out of his pajamas before he set off in search of the golden key.
     "I'm knocking off, Bingle," he said. He placed his practice blade on the deck next to Bingle's other two. His arms felt like they were floating.
     Bingle nodded, not breaking his own rhythm.
     "Come back to me when you can do half an hour," he said. "With each arm."
     He performed a spectacular no-handed roundoff that looked like it was going to take him right off the forecatle deck, but somehow he swallowed his inertia just in time to stick the landing. He finished with his blade jammed between the ribs of some imaginary assailant. He withdrew it and cleaned the blade on his pants leg.
     That was probably a few more lessons own the track.
     "Be careful what you learn from me," he said.  "What is written with a sword cannot be erased."
     "That's why I have you," Quentin said.  "So I won't have to write anything. With my sword."
     "Sometimes I think I am fate's sword. She wields me cruelly."
     Quentin wondered what it was like to be so unselfconsciously melodramatic. Nice, probably."'
The Magician King, by Lev Grossman

A definite read for those who are interested to see what would happen if adults found themselves in Fantasyland.

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