Kvothe > Harry Potter

Kvothe with his lute strapped to his back

I gave up reading fantasy a few years ago. Not because I disliked the genre, but because writers have over saturated the stories with dragons, orcs and wizards that they have become too common and less magical. In short, I found fantasy to be not so fantastical anymore.

But after watching A Game of Thrones and playing RIFT, my love for the genre has been rekindled. So, I started reading some books again and found The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss to be a story, not just a fantasy story, of exemplary caliber.

The center piece in The Name of the Wind, which is about an orphan who went to the University to study magic and other wondrous things, reminds me of Harry Potter. But the similarities between the two books ends there. Because Kvothe is alive, a well-developed character. His journey, ordeals and triumphs makes him much more believable than Potter.

Unlike Potter, who has gold and a celebrity status that was left to him by his important parents, Kvothe has nothing. He was born as an Edema Ruh, a group of traveling entertainers, who was viewed by many as thieves or animals. When his parents died, he begged and stole so he could eat. When he studied in the University, he has to work his butt off in order to pay his tuition.

His opponent isn’t some dark wizard either. Not yet, anyways. Instead, he is faced with challenges that many of us would consider mundane. He constantly worry about his tuition or where will he get the money to pay for his food, shelter, clothing and school supplies. And every time he solves one of his problems, he loses on the other. But he is clever, talented and resilient. He has grit.

I never thought I’d fall in love with another fantasy book. But The Name of the Wind and Kvothe (and also Fela), the book’s protagonist, easily stole my heart. I really suggest this book to Potter fans. While it isn’t like Harry Potter (it’s better), I think its author, Rothfuss, is trying to one-up Rowling’s Potter with Kvothe.

Anyways, here is my favorite quote from the book:

“Music is a proud, temperamental mistress. Give her the time and attention she deserves, and she is yours. Slight her and there will come a day when you call and she will not answer.”

This is true, coming from a guitarist who has neglected his guitar for almost 10 years.

RIFT Raider!

One of the things I love about being in a mega guild is that there’s always someone trying to form a raid group. So, for an average of 3 hours, these past 3 days, I’ve been doing nothing but closing raid, expert and crafting rifts. Not only it was enjoyable, but it was also very productive.

I earned a lot crafting materials, as well as crafter’s plaques, from those raids. In fact, I got a lot of materials that I put up 5 of my 16 Minor Catalyst to be bid on for only a silver at the auction house. I was drunk that night, and I almost had a stroke when I found out the next day. Luckily, a guildmate bid on it for 2 plats to raise the price, and it ended up selling for 3 plats. Not as much as I wanted, but it’s better than 1 silver. Lesson learned: never use the auction house when drunk.

The raid group that I’ve been running with these past few days also have plans to do Greenscale Blight soon. Some of them have already killed the green fat dragon and knows what to do. But I don’t think I will be able to join them since I don’t have T2 gear yet. I don’t see myself doing a T2 dungeon either. I don’t have time because, instead of raiding, I’ll be reading my eyes off this summer.

I guess it’s off to the Warfronts for me. I’ll just raise my Prestige Rank and earn PvP items, which isn’t bad anymore. This way, I can also keep on reading while waiting for the queue to pop.

Anyways, every Tuesday night, our guild invites the public to join us doing raid, expert and crafting rifts. So, if you want to join us, if you’re a Guardian on Faeblight, please send Foghladha (guild leader) or me (Skron) a tell in-game. I’ll see if we can accommodate you.

Staycation and My Summer Reading List

Due to a series of unfortunate events, which involved a Chicago pot hole and a bad neighborhood, I’m now a couple hundred bucks poorer. So, in order to let my savings recuperate, I’ve decided not to go anywhere this summer, skipping my plans to attend San Diego Comic-Con or PAX Prime. Instead, I’ll just go on a staycation. Lollapalooza, since it’s held right where I’m at, is still an option. But with the recent random mob attacks in the city, I’m not sure if I want to go anymore.

What I’m sure of, however, is that I’ll read a lot of books this summer. Earlier this year, I told myself that I’ll read at least 30 books this 2011. Not a lot. But, budget and time wise, that’s all I can afford. Even so, we are already half way in 2011 and I’ve only managed to read two. So, to catch up, I’m gonna use my staycation days and read at least 14 books this Summer (June 20 to September 20).

Here are some of the books that I want to read:

The Back Logs

1. The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
2. Freakonomics by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner
3. Everything Matters by Ron Currie Jr.
4. Great House: A Novel by Nicole Krauss
5. His Majesty’s Dragon by Naomi Novik

The C-Note: $100 worth of books

I know that I’m not suppose to splurge. But, this time, I’m going to turn my cheek away from frugality and spend $100 on books this Summer. $100 is actually nothing compared to the cost I’ll spend on a trip to San Diego or Seattle and attend geeky conventions.

6. Robocalypse by Daniel H. Wilson ($13)
7. Machine Man by Max Barry($10)
8. Embassytown by China Mieville ($13)
9. Feast For Crows by George R.R. Martin ($9)
10. A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin ($15)
11. Supergods by Grant Morrison ($14)
12. Pariah by Bob Fingerman ($10)
13. The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin ($8)
14. Feed by Mira Grant ($8)

That’s my list, and it really looks different since I have a lot of fantasy on it. Normally, the books that I read are sci-fi, non-fiction (science and history) and some contemporary literature. I stopped reading fantasy long ago. But, I guess, playing RIFT and watching A Game of Thrones lured me back into reading the genre.

Anyways, I’m really excited to get this thing going. Hopefully, I’d be able to finish these books before Fall rolls in.