Malazan Empire: Hello Malazan Empire Community - Malazan Empire

Jump to content

Page 1 of 1
  • You cannot start a new topic
  • You cannot reply to this topic

Hello Malazan Empire Community

#1 User is offline   AnthonyAlcott 

  • Recruit
  • Group: Malaz Regular
  • Posts: 2
  • Joined: 07-January 17

Posted 07 January 2017 - 08:16 PM

Hi, I am about to start the Malazan book of the fallen series. I had a look at the reading order thread, and I think I will follow the Erikson/Esslemont list that excludes the short stories. Lol, I will also be reading the stormlight archives (part of a reading group) for the first time concurrently. That might be a bit much to keep track of, but I like to take copious notes while I read, make detailed observations, etc.; I will be keeping a detailed journal for everything on my laptop.

I am in my mid-late 30's. I have philosophy degrees. I wanted a distraction from what I normally read (i.e. academic philosophy, lit). I used to read high fantasy as a boy and teen and I was curious what had happened in the genre since I had moved on, and I found this series, the stormlight one, and kingkiller books (I read the first two books recently). This is not the fantasy I grew up with! The writing quality in the genre (if Rothfuss is a general indication) has very much improved since I was reading books as a teen. Although I still really enjoy Zelazny's Amber books (which maybe someday I will reread). Anyway, I also am impressed with the elevated scale of contemporary fantasy.

My favorite writer is Tolstoy. My favorite philosopher is Nietzsche. My favorite poet is Rilke. I love the Chicago Cubs and my favorite type of food to eat or cook is Italian (also regional Italian food, e.g. Piedmont and Tuscany). I was a goth in the nineties. I still go to club once in awhile for that. Denver has a wonderful community for that type of thing. I live in Denver.

So I guess I had two questions for you, to satisfy my idle curiosity.

1-how do the Malazan books compare to the Stormlight series? In the fantasy community at large, these seem to be the two series that brook the most comparisons: they are (so I'm told) both incredibly ambitious, the world crafting is very complex, they both contain an extremely large cast of characters, etc. not to mention that they seem to be the current fantasy series with the largest fan followings/dedicated communities. So for someone about to jump in, what would you say about these two by way of comparison?

2-I'm sure there exists a thread somewhere, but is there anything you would recommend me doing or knowing before reading the Malazan series? Something that, with as much experience as you have with it, in hindsight you would suggest would have made the reading/cataloguing/analysis easier the first time around? More efficacious, lol (I read somewhere here that Erikson uses this word too much). Anyway, suggestions are appreciated, thank you.

This post has been edited by AnthonyAlcott: 07 January 2017 - 08:19 PM

-1

#2 User is offline   amphibian 

  • Ribbit
  • Group: Malaz Regular
  • Posts: 6,844
  • Joined: 28-September 06
  • Location:Upstate NY
  • Interests:Hopping around

Posted 07 January 2017 - 08:34 PM

Welcome!

The Malazan cast and places is much larger than that of the Stormlight series. That doesn't necessarily mean that you'll like one more than the other, but the Malazan story tackles more and spends less time with each individual character (for the most part) in the early going than Stormlight does.

As far as preparation goes, keep in mind that each book-specific forum here has spoilers up to the end of that specific book. So if you are sensitive to spoilers and are not done with Gardens of the Moon, you may not want to read the forum until you are done. You don't have to experience these books in any particular way, but it is nice to not have some of the big moments/twists in the series told to you plainly before you encounter them in-series.

I think if you've gotten to Tolkien, Nietzsche, Rilke etc, live a somewhat observant life in the modern world, and are loosely aware of how many fantasy books for a long time went in terms of overall story and which types of characters were mostly focused on, you've already done all the prep work you'll need for the Malazan series.

Do check back in if you've any big questions and we do love hearing thoughts of people new to the series and from interesting backgrounds. Bon voyage!

This post has been edited by amphibian: 07 January 2017 - 10:38 PM

I survived the Permian and all I got was this t-shirt.
0

#3 User is offline   Abyss 

  • abyssus abyssum invocat
  • Group: Administrators
  • Posts: 18,917
  • Joined: 22-May 03
  • Location:The call is coming from inside the house!!!!
  • Interests:Interesting.

Posted 07 January 2017 - 08:48 PM

Welcome!
Please note the mandatory DNA scrape, brain tissue sample and bank debit are routinely done within the first 72hrs and should not interrupt your normal sleep pattern unduly.Nightmares, chafing and some minor bleeding from the nose and eyes are all normal.

Re Malazan and Stormlight, these are two glorious, GLORIOUS series for reentry into fantasy. Very different authors in style and approach.Other than the epic scope, I wouldn't draw much comparison. SE and ICE are rpg gamers who loved the genre and brought their academic backgrounds (anthropology, etc) into the creative process brilliantly. Brandon (who we have a whole subsection for, btw) is an enthusiastic writing machine who completed two bestselling novels and a short story in the time it took me to write this. He's a little more straightforward than SE and ICE, and it works. You have some fantastic reading ahead of you.

Re 'prep', you're good. Just keep in mind that neither Malazan author spoon feeds the reader. You're entering a story that's already in progress for a while. Just roll with it and don't expect or try too hard to understand exactly what everything and everyone are from the start.

Note Amphi's warning above re spoilers, and when you're ready please jump in the the forums.
CHASE: Paw Patrol is ready for action Mr Pust sir!
PUST: *pauses ranting* What does that mean?
ZUMA: It means let's dive in, dude!
PUST: What? What is a dude? WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN?????
-The Malazan Book of the Paw Patrol
0

#4 User is offline   worry 

  • Master of the Deck
  • Group: Malaz Regular
  • Posts: 13,372
  • Joined: 24-February 10
  • Location:the buried west

Posted 07 January 2017 - 08:50 PM

This may not be what you want to hear, but I'd say seeking to understand everything that happens or connecting all the dots on a first pass is a big mistake and somewhat beside the point with Malazan.

I don't mean to say you should abandon your usual reading rituals, only that this series isn't linear so much as kaleidoscopic and those that seem to want 'the answers' right away run the most risk of getting bogged down and burnt out.

In that light, my advice is simple: have patience, have trust, and have fun.
They came with white hands and left with red hands.
1

#5 User is offline   Gorefest 

  • Witness
  • Group: Malaz Regular
  • Posts: 2,211
  • Joined: 29-May 14

Posted 07 January 2017 - 11:15 PM

Yeah, I would echo Death rattle's caution. Keep in mind that Erikson is an archeologist and anthropologist. This means that he approaches the Malazan universe with a different mindset than a lot of other fantasy authors. He sees the world as a result of millennia of history and civilizations built on top of civilizations. This means that you'll encounter people and tribes with different mythologies, conflicting or partial information, and will have to accept events and world settings that are not always fully explained because they are not strange to the people in the world and as such they would not feel the need to clarify or embellish things to an external reader in thought or word.
She went and she left me like litter. She took all future summers with her. I lost all my money cuz I tried to bribe her. Now I can only afford an amateur sniper.
0

#6 User is offline   worry 

  • Master of the Deck
  • Group: Malaz Regular
  • Posts: 13,372
  • Joined: 24-February 10
  • Location:the buried west

Posted 07 January 2017 - 11:57 PM

Yeah. But I don't mean to discourage the other ways you engage with the story. And the Wiki project is such a success because these books are worthy of a fine-tooth comb. I just don't think it's necessarily the most fruitful way to read them the first time through.
They came with white hands and left with red hands.
0

#7 User is offline   Andorion 

  • God
  • Group: Malaz Regular
  • Posts: 4,351
  • Joined: 30-July 11
  • Interests:All things Malazan, sundry sci-fi and fantasy, history, Iron Maiden

Posted 08 January 2017 - 01:29 AM

One more thing:

DO NOT GOOGLE.

Do not google anything about Malazan when reading. You can and will be spoilt, even if you don't open a link, you can be spoilt by image search.

Ask here and we will answer
0

#8 User is offline   nicetrout 

  • Sergeant
  • Group: Malaz Regular
  • Posts: 69
  • Joined: 05-January 17

Posted 08 January 2017 - 08:39 PM

Yeah just be careful. Malazan Wiki is okay but like I've learned some vague stuff that definitely informed how I viewed some plot lines earlier on.

Mostly dude you just have to be patient and accept that many times you won't be a hundred percent clear on what's happening. They are a lot of rules and definitions of stuff that you kinda have to pick up on. It's a complex world that really feels ages and ages old. There is so much stuff so just keep and open mind and be patient. Definitely ask questions to clarify stuff and don't be too proud not to try and learn.
Took me look three books to learn what an Elder God is, it's worth it to ask people and not just assume you'll figure it out.
0

#9 User is offline   Itwęs Nom 

  • Inquisitor of High House Mafia
  • Group: High House Mafia
  • Posts: 1,229
  • Joined: 02-August 15
  • Location:Weird Side
  • Interests:Kill the King

Posted 08 January 2017 - 08:47 PM

For artwork there are spoiler-free galleries for new readers/each book(they're spoiler-free once you've finished the said book) on the wiki
All things fall, from kings to rose petals
0

#10 User is offline   AnthonyAlcott 

  • Recruit
  • Group: Malaz Regular
  • Posts: 2
  • Joined: 07-January 17

Posted 08 January 2017 - 08:51 PM

also, are there any tabletop versions of the malazan world in the works? RPG's?
0

#11 User is offline   Gorefest 

  • Witness
  • Group: Malaz Regular
  • Posts: 2,211
  • Joined: 29-May 14

Posted 08 January 2017 - 08:58 PM

It's been talked about a lot, but as far as I know there is nothing currently out there or in the making. SE and ICE have hinted that they may bring out a book or something similar that contains the basis of their original rpg setup, but no clue if it is ever really going to happen.
She went and she left me like litter. She took all future summers with her. I lost all my money cuz I tried to bribe her. Now I can only afford an amateur sniper.
0

Share this topic:


Page 1 of 1
  • You cannot start a new topic
  • You cannot reply to this topic

1 User(s) are reading this topic
0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users