Saturday, January 15, 2005

Days go by; life is...well...continuing; I escape by reading. I made the mistake last week of picking up Assassin’s Apprentice, the first book in Robin Hobb’s Farseer trilogy, and was from that point doomed to do nothing but sit glued to a chair until I’d finished both that trilogy and the following one, the Tawny Man. I know I’ve posted about these books before, but whatever I said bears repeating–her writing is truly astounding, and her characters all the more endearing because they are real in their flaws and mistakes and occasional blindness. I realized during this reading that I can’t agree with her philosophy because I don’t believe in the division of body and soul (that is, that a body can exist in this world without a soul, for any amount of time, or vice versa, or that bodies are somehow interchangeable), and yet the bonds this allows her to create are beyond philosophy. I think it’s like the flying and other impossibilities in kung-fu movies–Odious says those are metaphors for things that can’t be shown or even really explained, just as the Skill and the Wit stand in for bonds too amazing for us to fully understand.

I was looking through my reading notebook last night, where I’ve written down things I want to read, as well as cut-out blurbs from catalogues, and to my surprise I found one for Assassin’s Apprentice. After putting it in there I must have completely forgotten about it, since I remember picking up the first two books of the series at a library book sale, rather at random. It’s always odd to read someone’s summary of a book you’ve loved deeply, and see both their interpretation and attempt to encompass the whole of something in just a few words. That’s partly why I don’t give book reports here–you can go to Amazon for that–but rather my own thoughts about the book in hopes of inspiring others to share what I’ve enjoyed so much.

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