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Books Received: August 25, 2014

In the interest of full disclosure, here are the books we received this week.

About John DeNardo (13012 Articles)
John DeNardo is the Managing Editor at SF Signal and a columnist at Kirkus Reviews. He also likes bagels. So there.

8 Comments on Books Received: August 25, 2014

  1. So, the Destiny Quest books are Choose Your Own Adventure/Fighting Fantasy style books. I find it humorous the books come with instructions. I wonder how well that works with adults…

  2. My SFFWOrld colleague Mark Yon reviewed the first one, and I think this might be the bit which is relevant to your question:

    “For someone used to the Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone Fighting Fantasy game books from the 1980’s, or Dungeon and Dragons role-playing, you’ve pretty much got the idea of what goes on here. You start as an outcast with no memory of your background or history.

    However things have moved on a long way since the 1980’s, and this book has upgraded many of the ideas of the original version. There are different levels of difficulty that you may choose, from Green quests for the complete novice, to Red quests for those who want a challenge. This allows readers from the young teen to the experienced gamer to choose an appropriate path to follow.

    One of the annoyances of players in the past was that in order to build your strength, collect rewards, develop your endurance, add to your weapons arsenal and stay healthy was that you had to write your scores/progress down, often in your precious book. This newer version allows you to download Hero Sheets (at ) wallpapers for your computer, glossaries to use as a handy reference guide (though there is one at the back of the book), combat strategies and extra characters to both add to the game experience and keep your book pristine. It also allows you to play the game as often and as many times as you like.”

    • This sounds really interesting.

      • I stand corrected! We just got a third DESTINY QUEST book in, and they are indeed Choose Your Own Adventure-style books. I was thrown off by the MASSIVE size of ’em…quite different than the thin ones from my youth. And it looks like these are WAY more involved as they have readers follow along with character sheets.

  3. Soda Pop Soldier started off well but I had to put it down. I was happily reading along until I read that one character was listing to “rap music about how the white man was keeping him down, money and ho’s, blah blah blah . . .” (I’m paraphrasing because I returned the book.)

    Now, it’s true that this is precisely what some rap is about. (But it is also true that the white man has been keeping us down . . .)

    Sometimes, these are just quirks of the characters and I don’t mind running across bigoted secondary characters in a story, but other times – – like in this case – – the poorly thought-out detail only made me suspect that the writer is culturally insensitive. These were the thoughts of the main character, after all. Why alienate some of your readers in this way?

    I know a lot of writers show their political and racial beliefs without shame – – on all sides. But if you do so, you risk losing readers. Like me.

  4. I first read “Carbide Tipped Pens” as “Carbide Tipped Penis,” which made the book sound considerably more interesting to me.

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