Comments: 22
The trick is not to pronounce the words, but use the string of letters as an identifier. Sort of like hieroglyphic symbols. ;)
Murder by Death 1 year ago
I've tried that before, and it works when the words are very different from each other, but fails utterly when they start looking similar, like Scáthmhaide and Siodhachan and Svartálfheim. Same word length, and enough of the same letters that when the words are spaced far enough apart in the text, I forget which hieroglyphic means what. (Although this is not strictly the best example, as I don't struggle with Norse nearly as badly as I do the Irish, so I never struggled to remember Svartálfheim is the realm of dark elves. :)
Tannat 1 year ago
I flirted with the idea of trying this seres on audio but I didn't think the narrator would appeal.
Murder by Death 1 year ago
The narrator that does the editions I can get here (Luke Daniels) does a great job with everything EXCEPT Oberon the dog. He makes Oberon sound like scooby doo with facial paralysis and it's painful. But I've heard from others that the other narrator doesn't do any better a job either. Ymmv - but overall I think I prefer the audio in spite of the hash made of poor Oberon.
There is a dog called Oberon?? (And why can't they all have sensible fantasy names like that?)
Murder by Death 1 year ago
Yep - an Irish Wolfhound named Oberon. :)

And I always suspected fantasy writers has a secret love for Welsh, or a secret distaste for vowels.
Tannat 1 year ago
I think it's just that Welsh sounds foreign to practically everyone.

I tried the sample with Luke Daniels and didn't think I could handle a book with him. Had no narrative intonation...
Hah. I like the "Welsh" theory. It really *is* so gloriously archaic, it's practically made for fantasy world building. (Or language "building", as it were ...)
Tannat 1 year ago
And it's a way to be consistent.
True. Christopher Paolini says, in an interview included on one of the "Inheritance" CDs, that he kept copious notes on the language he created for his world, which grew more elaborate as the book cycle grew in turn. -- Though I doubt any recent writer took as much care and put as much dedication into the creation of a language for his fantasy world as did Tolkien ...
Tannat 1 year ago
Tolkien gets my respect just on that note.
Murder by Death 1 year ago
I wouldn't be at all surprised if he spent more time developing that language than he did writing the stories. I've tried writing glyphs that don't already exist - it's hard; I failed utterly. Of course, creativity is not my strength, but still. Really. hard.
I think with Tolkien it was something like 10 years for the languages alone. That's how the whole thing started out IIRC -- he'd wondered whether one could in fact develop languages practically from scratch, or with only some roots in the ancient Germanic / Norse and Celtic languages, and once he'd gone down that path, the world-building and all the rest followed. Well, he *was* a professional linguist, after all ...
I read the first four and took a break because they were beginning to get a bit 'samey' and I was fed up with waiting for the consequences of his actions to kick in. I'll probably pick them up again once the bingo game is over, and I've worked my way through Three Pines.
Murder by Death 1 year ago
Oh boy do the consequences kick in here, or at least they start to... I"m assuming they'll continue to kick well into the next book at least.

These are definitely not books I can binge on - I like being able to space them out, as I think they work better that way.
Person Of Interest 1 year ago
I'm glad I'm not the only one. Unpronounceable names is one of the reasons I usually avoid the fantasy genre too, plus the lengthy tomes needed for the world building. I've got the first in this series in audio, so luckily the narrator will do the heavy lifting for me. :)
Murder by Death 1 year ago
Hope you enjoy it! Just be prepared for a really, really bad Oberon (the dog); as I mentioned above, it's the only character the narrator does REALLY badly. Although if you have the edition narrated by the 'other' guy, I'll be interested in your take.
Person Of Interest 1 year ago
It's the Luke Daniels narration, so I won't be able to weigh in on the other guy.

Off topic: I just finished my first Ngaio Marsh, Artists In Crime, and man did it drag; way too much investigative detail and not much action. If you do give her a try, pick a different one. After checking the Amazon reviews, someone familiar with Marsh's work said her earlier and later mysteries were best. I guess the middle books tended to be too heavy on info dump and procedural minutiae.
Murder by Death 1 year ago
Good to know - I have three of them I bought on a whim some time ago from a used book store; I don't know where they fall in the timeline, but luckily none of them are Artists in Crime. :)
I've found (somewhat to my surprise), when recently revisiting the book, that "Artists in Crime" works better if you already know the story -- and if you chiefly look at it as the book where Alleyn first meets Troy (@MdB: his wife-to-be, a rather strong-willed painter ... shades of Marsh herself, I suspect). The mystery in this book is certainly not Marsh's most clever one; I remember I'd figured it out practically the second the murder happened even the first time around, and it came back to me in a flash when I reached the scene again this time. So yes, definitely not an ideal book to start the series with. But once you've read a few books featuring both Alleyn and Troy, if you ever want to find out how they met ... this is the one to turn to.
Murder by Death 1 year ago
That's good to know; even though I'm not a fan of romance, I do like a bit of (very) secondary love story in my mystery. I'd definitely want to know how they met, so I might try to read these in some resemblance of order (even if I skip one here or there on the advice of y'all).
Oh, never fear. This isn't "romance" with a capital "R" -- neither Alleyn nor (particularly) Troy are the type for that, and nor was Marsh, I suspect. Troy in particular would have disapproved of any serious "romancing" on Alleyn's part. In fact, though they do initially meet on a sea voyage (with hardly any romantic interlude or consequences to speak of), they next meet when Troy is involved in a murder, in the course of the investigation Alleyn manages to p... her off considerably, and even after this first (substantially unromantic) "involvement" it takes several books for them to make a match of it! :D