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Saturday, March 19, 2011

I Submit My Qualifications

Hello all.  Call me Anominal.  And considering the m:tg.com article database I've been building up over the past weeks I guess I think of myself as an MTG Archivist.  The plan for this site was to do book reviews, and well... I don't know about you, but the way I see it, a reviewer should have three things:

1) The ability to communicate.
2) Experience with the material.
3) The same taste as me, or one I can understand.

This is a new site, and it's all me, so I thought I'd introduce myself and address these points.

1) Communication. 

That's a toughie.  Sure I can type out complete sentences, but can I do it in a way that people will enjoy, and do it as thoroughly as people want from reviews.  This is the hardest of the three to demonstrate know.  I don't know the answer myself.  I suspect I'll improve as we go along.  So if you wanna come along for the ride, you can find out with me.

2) Experience. 

I'm going to be reviewing books, but it's important to have experience with reading in general.  I began serious reading when I was given the Chronicles of Narnia in maybe 1992.  Since then I've read:

- Both the Shannara and Word&Void Series by Terry Brooks
- The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan (and Brandon Sanderson)
- Elantris, Warbreaker, The Mistborn Trilogy, and The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson
- A Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R. Martin
- The Lord of the Rings by J. R. Tolkein
- The Farseer, Liveship, Tawney Man, and Soldier Son Trilogies by Robin Hobb
- The Kingkiller Chronicles books by Patrick Rothfuss
- The Dark Tower Series King (and whole slew of King classics)
- The Star Wars Books by Timothy Zhan (and a few select other Star Wars books)
- Both the Ender and Shadow Series by Orson Scott Card
- The Saga of Recluse by L. E. Modesitt Jr.
- The Gentleman Bastards books by Scott Lynch
- The Adept Series by Piers Anthony (and quite of a few Xanth novels)
- And so on...

If you're a fan of reading, and fantasy in particular, I confident that that's a pretty strong sampling of the fantasy genre.  Not comprehensive (Certainly missing Erikson, Salvatore, and McCaffrey to name a few), but that's 19 years of reading mostly fantasy, which is experience enough to recognize what's cliche or a good take on an old tale, and enough experience to recognize what I like.

3) Taste.

My previous answer should cover some of that, but I want to get into the Magic books specifically.  I began reading Magic books with the first Magic book, Arena, and have read 21 magic books total between 1996 (or 1997) and 2004.

- Arena
- Whispering Woods, Shattered Chains, and Final Sacrifice
- The Brothers' War
- Planeswalker, Timestreams, and Bloodlines
- Mercadian Masques, Nemesis, and Prophecy
- The Thran
- Odyssey, Chainer's Torment, and Judgment
- Onslaught, Legions, and Scourge
- The Moons of Mirrodin, The Darksteel Eye, and The Fifth Dawn

From what I remember, the book highlights and horrible books are:

Highlights - The Brother's war, The Thran, Chainer's Torment, and Nemesis.
Horrible books - The Onslaught Trilogy

It's been over 7 years since the last time I picked up a Magic book (ok, that's a white lie, because I just recently finished Ravnica and Guildpact), and perhaps 15+ years since I picked up my first.  So I don't feel comfortable writing official reviews of each book until reading them again.  But if the highlights and horrible standouts list isn't good enough, I'll be putting up Semi Reviews of each of these in the near future.  Semi Reviews considering how long it's been since I read them and I've likely forgotten much of the finer points of even the books I loved.

So... reviews coming soon!  Hope to see you there.

1 comment:

  1. I'd recommend the Ice Age Block: The Gathering Dark. Best of all magic books I've read, personally. (Agree with you on the highlights and horribles...)