Merry Christmas–D’oh

Merry Christmas and Happy New All !!! Belated I know. We had some rather unpleasant circumstances this past week, causing me to get quite behind in my writing schedule. Rest assured J.S. is working twice as hard to catch up! I don’t have a lot to add this particular week, so I’ll leave you with another book review I did on a novella entitled Vampire Hunter D. It’s a great read. Not too long, not too in-depth, just great reading. Was like 5 bucks on Amazon. There’s something like twenty-three in the series, at least in its native Japan. Over here in the states there’s I think seventeen or eighteen. I’ve only read up to Vol. 4, and only posted a review on the first one so far. I’ll get to the others, and I’ll leave my thoughts on Goodreads as well as here. So, without further a-do, here it is. Again Merry late Christmas everyone, and Happy New Year!!!

Vampire Hunter D-A Review
By J.S. Eaton

This is my review of the novel Vampire Hunter D by Hideyuki Kikuchi. And yes, that is a Japanese author, and the novel was originally written in Japanese and translated into English.
BOTTOM LINE: It’s a great book, not terribly long, but well-written and quite entertaining.
Vampire Hunter D is a sci-fi/horror novel. Set in the year 12091, it’s a story in the far distant future. This allows the author a great deal of freedom in his scientific conceptualization, and he uses it to great effect. This novel is the first in a series of twenty-five books so far. At present, the first seventeen have been translated, and as a fan of the series I can only hope that all of them will be brought over eventually.
In this far distant future, vampires have ruled the earth for thousands of years, ever since a nuclear holocaust in the early twenty-first century laid humanity low and allowed the vampires to rise to social and military supremacy. Since that time, the vampires have ruled humanity in a kind of pseudo-feudal society. The vampires are even referred to often as The Nobility. At the time the stories begin, vampire society has begun a steady decline, for reasons that are only vaguely hinted at, at least in the early books. Humanity lives on the outskirts of the great vampire cities, in an area known as the Frontier. It is in this time and place that the novels start, with their hero, known only as D.
The story of this first book concerns a young woman named Doris Lang who’s been bitten by a vampire lord named Magnus Lee who lives near her village. The mysterious vampire hunter, D, makes his way into her village and she hires him to kill the vampire before she turns into a vampire herself.
This first novel is a great entry into this far distant future. The writing incorporates a number of different themes besides sci-fi, not the least of which is a heavy Old-West motif. The Frontier, where humanity lives, is often described in details that would make up a typical western American town from the eighteenth century. Saloons, the town sheriff, stables, the dusty dirt street, they’re all here in the novels. Kikuchi has combined them in the most interesting ways though, and it works well throughout.
The hero, D, is actually a half-vampire. He’s picked up the best of both worlds however, being relatively immune to sunlight, or any of the other weaknesses that vampires have here while maintaining the vampire’s strength and speed. A word about D is probably warranted at this point. The author goes to great lengths on numerous occasions to tell the reader how perfect D is, how every woman who sees him wants him, how strong he is and how he’s always cool and collected. D bests nearly everyone who battles him, even vampires. After a few of these references it becomes obvious that Kikuchi is really enamored of his literary creation. It’s not a bad thing, but after the third or fourth time we’re told about D’s striking good looks or his invincibility it can kind of wear.
The story itself is good. The antagonist, Magnus Lee, is a sordid old blood-sucker who’s been alive for thousands of years. Every so-often he takes himself a human bride, more as a plaything than a partner. Doris is eventually captured by the vampire, and D has to rescue her. Once that’s done he has to defend her from the vampire’s minions, not the least of which is Lamika, Magus Lee’s daughter. D defeats all these opponents with ease. There are subtle hints during the narrative that D owes his superior abilities to something aside from being half-vampire, but that’s never fully explained here.
The story is relatively short compared to most novels from western authors. Not having read any other Japanese authors I couldn’t say whether or not this is a normal length for novels from across the ocean. It’s an entertaining story nonetheless, and more than worth the five dollars I paid for a printed copy. I really look forward to reading the further adventures of this mysterious hunter named D. Kikuchi has made an interesting character and set him into a fascinating future.

See you in the Future
J.S. Eaton

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A Dance with Dragons- A review

My Review of A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin
By J.S. Eaton

So here we are, the fifth volume in the much-loved A Song of Ice and Fire series of books. I’ll review the overall plot and characters, and what’s happened so far, then leave my opinion of this fifth tome, A Dance with Dragons.
This series of books takes place in the mythical lands of Westeros and, across a narrow ocean called, ironically enough, The Narrow Sea, the lands known as the Free Cities. This is also quite ironic, for it is in these cities that the slave trade makes up the backbone of the lands economy. Although, as is pointed out in numerous passages across the books, especially in the later volumes, the differences between a poorly paid servant and a slave are minute, from certain point of view. But enough of that, what about the books?
This series follows a number of characters through a span of several months as a war breaks out, a girl gets betrothed, her husband dies, etc. When I say a number of characters I mean a rather large number. I’m sure someone somewhere(probably many someones) has actually sat down and counted the number of Point-of-View characters that the various chapters have been written from, I have not. It’s much easier to describe the story by the where things happen, than the who. Now these central locations change slightly from certain books. The first three volumes, A Game of Thrones, A Clash of Kings, and A Storm of Swords, concern what’s going on in Winterfell, King’s Landing, The Wall, with smaller attention being paid to the Free Cities and the Iron Islands. The action moves somewhat starting with volume four, A Feast for Crows, with more going on in the Free Cities and the Iron Islands, as well as a southern area called Dorne.
The story of the war is contained mostly in the first three books, but there’s so much more than that going on here that the war itself is actually less than half of the whole story. If anything is evidence of that, it would be the enormous size of each book, at more than a thousand pages each. They’re some of the biggest books I’ve ever read. There is the whole backstory of the Wall, where a host of otherworldly creatures is supposed to be gathering. And the young girl with dragons as pets, whom she’s trying to raise, as well as control and army, and later rule a city. The enormity of this tale cannot be understated. But Martin manages to hold our attention throughout, with vivid characters that really come to life. There are not any pure heroes to be found in this tale, but plenty of terrible villains. Some people try to act heroic(Dany), but most of it manages to backfire on them in some way. The author has tried to craft this story with as much realism as one could fit into a fantasy tale, and he manages to do it quite well. As a budding author myself, I have no end of respect for what this man has accomplished, even if I can’t help reading the entire work saying things like, “Well I wouldn’t have done THAT to the characters.” And such. Still it’s a masterpiece, and no mistake.
This fifth book is not a direct sequel to its predecessor. For the most part it concerns other characters that don’t appear in A Feast for Crows. He started writing about so many different people that it simply wouldn’t all fit into one book. So the plot and story of this book and the preceding one really happen at the same time.
So what is A Dance with Dragons? A great big book with a lot happening in some places, and very little in others. The rest of this review will assume the reader is familiar with the previous texts. If you haven’t read them, and don’t want to know what’s going to happen, I advise to stop here.
The folks who receive the most attention are probably Daenerys Targaryen, and Tyrion Lannister, and rightfully so I would say. They are my favorite surviving characters. The last third of the book catches up with Feast, so we get to find out what happens to Cersei and Jamie Lannister. We’re given more of Victarion Greyjoy’s voyage as well, another brilliant example of Martin’s ability to write a character that you love to hate. The Dorne story is followed up as well, part of it is concluded, and part of it is not.
And The Wall, what a mess that is now. Samwell Tarly got Jon elected Lord Commander in Storm of Swords, and he does a fine job with what he’s given to work with. Still, though, it’s not a job I would ever want. As soon as one problem is solved he gets two more, sometimes three. Melisandre gets one POV chapter to herself, and it gives the reader an interesting view into her mind. Until that chapter, I wasn’t sure whether she was really the fanatical believer she appears to be or simply a self-serving sorceress who’s using the Red Religion to further her own ambitions.
Dany and Tyrion spend the whole book in or near the free cities. Dany stays in Meereen nearly the whole time. I’ll admit that her story did drag in some places for me, and she makes a lot of choices that seem out of character, but perhaps that’s from my own perception of who she is, and what she’s doing. One day I’m going to come back and read this whole epic from beginning to end, and maybe those parts will make more sense. Tyrion, on the other hand, moves throughout the entire book. I think he was in the same place in only two chapters toward the front of the book.
A surprising new character is introduced herein. I won’t spoil the surprise, but it’s a big reveal, and the story of this particular person will definitely be one of the highlights of the next book.
By the end, Cersei finally seems to have been humbled, but don’t you believe it. After reading her POV chapters in the preceding book, I wouldn’t want to go against her. Still, she is shortsighted, lacking her father’s strategic mind (Tyrion got all that it seems) but all of his ruthlessness. There’s a passage in the book that compares what a certain person did versus what Tywin Lannister would have done. Someone was searching for Robert Baratheon in a small village right after his rebellion had started. This certain person searched the village for Robert. It’s pointed out that Tywin Lannister would have instead ringed the entire village with his men so no one could leave and then burned the entire thing to the ground. Ya, Cersei got all of that heartlessness. Very little is said of Margery Tyrell.
Jamie gets a chapter, only one, but much and more happens in it, and I can’t wait to see where he’s going in the next book. His is one of the hardest to understand characters. Sometimes I think he’s been humbled, and sometimes not. Maybe the next book will provide me with a more definitive answer. Martin also leaves us on the edge of our seats with Dany. Put it to you this way, if the HBO series stays on the air throughout the story of this book, the last episode will without a doubt end with the Daenerys Targaryen scene. Again. Martin’s been quoted as saying his favorite character and the one he most relates to is Tyrion, but the one with the most vivid scenes is Dany.
Bran’s story is expanded on, though not to the extent I’d have expected, considering how much happens to the others. Davos Seaworth, Quentyn Martell, and others are given fewer chapters than the main characters, but they still move the story along nicely. Barristan Selmy gets a chapter; I thought that was nice touch. Arya gets a few chapters as well, which is good, I didn’t want to wait another two or three years to find out if she stays blind.
Martin’s written another behemoth, well over a thousand pages and covering a huge amount of story across half a world. As usual, some people die and others live. Martin’s affinity for killing people you’d never think of remains.
All in all, this book stands up as an excellent work, as good as any on the series. Storm of Swords is my personal favorite, but I like this one as well as any. Thank you very much George Martin, keep up the good work.
On a side note, for anyone not familiar at all with these stories, there are parts that are a, shall we say, rated R. The author isn’t graphic or explicit, but he mentions the intimate act in all its glory whenever the story calls for it and doesn’t hold back. Just throwin’ that in there for your information. Thanks for reading to all. Hope you enjoy the books as much as I did.

J.S. Eaton
See you in the Future.
Aeonith.com

The Hobbit-A Review

Hi Everybody!

Hi Mr Scott!

Well, instead of prattling on about my own work this time, I thought I’d give my opinion of someone elses.:) Namely, Peter Jackson, and his film adaptation of that beloved children’s book, The Hobbit. Yes, The Hobbit was written as a children’s book way back in 1937, by Mr J. R. R. Tolkien.  His follow up-, the Lord of the Rings, was written as more mature fare. It’s funny, his publisher had asked Tolkien to write a sequel to the Hobbit, which Lord of the Rings technically is, but they had really wanted another kid’s book of about the same style and length, 80,000 or so words. What they got was the dark and brooding LOTR, about 500,000 words. But they obviously knew a good thing when they saw it, so they published it anyway, lucky for all us fantasy fiction fans. Well, enough of that, what about the movie? Was it any good? Well, yes, it was.

First, what is The Hobbit? The Hobbit was originally a book, a children’s book actually, published way back in 1937, written my a certain college professor named J.R.R. Tolkien. The title character is a small person, from a race of small people, who live in a kind of harmony with nature. His home is called The Shire, his world, Middle Earth. The title character’s name is Bilbo Baggins. One day, a certain old wizard named Gandalf shows up offering to send him on an “adventure”. At first, Bilbo says no, remarking, “Adventures make one late for dinner.” But the call to excitement is too much to resist, so Mr Baggins accompanies Gandalf and thirteen dwarves on their journey to slay a dragon, and retake their homeland from it.

I’ll try not to throw any spoilers in here, but it might be difficult. The movie follows the story and plot from the books fairly closely, while adding quite a bit of material, which is understandable. Peter Jackson has the monumental task of taking a small children’s book and making it into a three-film masterpiece, no small undertaking. As it will no doubt be compared to his Rings adaptation, I think he’d tried to greatly widen the scope of the movies, compared with the book. One can’t  help but wonder, if Jackson had adapted The Hobbit into a movie before LOTR, would it have the grand scope and vision it now has, considering the book is so much smaller in it’s storytelling ambitions. There’s a lot more going on here than the journey of one little hobbit. Alot. The book isn’t as far-reaching, and if Jackson hadn’t already made the LOTR movies, the scope of this new one might have been quite a bit smaller. Lord of the Rings, the movies, and the books, told a tale of war, battles, and wide ranging plans and events. The Hobbit, as a book, is far more personal, and doesn’t really include what’s going on the wider world. Granted that at the end a huge battle is waged, but in the books that fight is more for the dwarves gold than anything else. Having seen this first movie, one can get the impression that the battle at the end may have wider-ranging implications in this film version. We’ll see.

The acting is great, everyone does an extremely good job with their parts. Some of the dwarves don’t get to say much, which is a shame because every one of them who get’s a decent amount of lines does an excellent job of expressing their characters. Ian McKellan is back as Gandalf, as are a few more players from the LOTR movies, most of which don’t appear in the book version. Their inclusion here is part of the effort Jackson is making to widen the scope of the movie in comparison to the book. Now, in his defense, he’s not actually making up his own stuff and putting it into this movie. Jackson and Co. have taken material from other Tolkien works, that would have been happening around the timeline of The Hobbit, and added into his movie. He goes to great lengths to explain what and why the dwarves are doing what they are doing, and why they’ve chosen now, which if I recall the book version only goes into very sparingly. All in all, it flows well.

It’s long, another nearly three-hour epic from Mr. Jackson, but it goes along so nicely that the time flies by. By the time it’s over I didn’t feel like I’d been there as long as I had, and I didn’t really want to get up, as he leaves you at a great cliffhanger.:)

All in all, it was a great movie, and I’m glad I went to see it. Well, that’s it for now, Be sure to tune in next time for Did I just step in that, or Don’t be greedy and let me have everything.

See You in the Future

J.S. Eaton

Immenance!

Heh, ya I just made that word up. It’s a form of imminent, I think. Anyway, it means something’s about to happen. The Legend of Tscon Lightbringer Book Three. I’ll be proofing it this week, and letting my team of experts take a crack at it, and then when all the bugs are worked out, Publication! So hang on, the next part of the legendary monk’s adventure is closer than ever!

While we’re on the subject of Aeonith, I should probably let you all know that the Aeonith website has been updated, with more lands, people, places and events detailed. Look closely, and you’ll find some hints about the next book will be about! What is it, you ask? Well, all I can say at this point, is that it takes place ten years before the adventures of our illustrious monk, and it concerns a different part of Bordelon than we’re used too! Stay tuned!

In addition to writing my own material, I’ve started reading again. The book at this point is the fifth of legendary author George RR Martin’s famous epic, A Song of Ice and Fire. The title of the book is A Dance with Dragons. For those not familiar with this series, it begins with a little book(little is a pun intended, it’s like a thousand words long) called A Game of Thrones. It’s a sprawling epic, covering a wide swath of land, and a huge cast of characters. They’re literally some of the largest books I’ve ever read, but they’re awesome. Martin’s fantasy is very gritty, dark, and realistic, if such a term can be applied to this genre. The first book actually holds very few fantastical things. As the story has progressed though, more extraordinary people and events have cropped up. Still, it’s all done with an excellent style. I’ve immensely enjoyed them so far. Settle in for along read if you want to get started on them though, there’s five books so far, and they’re all about a thousand pages or more. Whew that’s a lot of words.

Well, That’s all I have for now, before I go I’ll leave you with another excerpt from The New Master, just to tide you over. Enjoy! Stay tuned next time for, How did that get in here, or, What smells like feet?

See you in the Future,

J.S. Eaton

“What’s going to happen to Daenna?”

“That is up to the Forest. My impression is you are an honorable person, and so your companion probably is as well, in any case the Forest will know for sure. If she is indeed a good soul, the Forest will no doubt wish to help, but whether they can, that may be something else entirely.”

Tscon noticed that Thorgrass was referring to the forest again as if were an entity or a group.

“What do you mean exactly, when you say, the Forest?”

“I mean the Dytarians, of course. As I said, they are one and the same, the Dytarians and the forest. Two separate entities, yet they are one. How this is and how it came to be, only they know. The Dytarians themselves resemble you and I, but with many, shall we say, tree-like characteristics. We rarely see them in the cities, as they much prefer to stay within the Forest itself. They only come to the population when they must. But they always seem to know when that is, somehow.”

Of a Woman — A Poem

Hello friends and readers. Well, I’ve got something new for you today, a poem I wrote. It’s not long, but I like it. It says everything I believe about women. If you like it, leave a comment. Enjoy!!!

Of a Woman

The name of a woman

says to me

all the wonderful things

that she can be

A mother, a daughter

a lover, a friend

who stands by your side

to whatever end

In the sight of a woman

does heaven unfold

Her curves tell a beauty

of ecstasy untold

Her shape enraptures

My heartbeat grows fast

Her form is perfection

Forever will last

The smell of a woman

is a beautiful morn

Her delicate beauty

in natural form

Her scent is a blessing

as a cool summer rain

Her fragrance inviting

but never in vain

The touch of a woman

is a wonderful thing

She makes my soul smile

My heart starts to sing

When her hand is in mine

None else do I need

Ne’er let her go

Is all I do plead

The voice of a woman

is music sublime

Hypnotic, erotic

Without form or time

She extolls her virtue

with every word

I listen enthralled

Every syllable heard

The kiss of a woman

is ecstasy pure

warm and inviting

bold yet demure

Her soft lips do speak

of the love in her soul

Pure and unsullied

Her passion extolled

The love of a woman

means everything

our lives are for naught

if her heart does not sing

Love her and cherish

each day that you live

For the love of a woman

whose heart she doth give

J.S. Eaton