Comments: 5
oof. i'm early read for a book tour post that i need to finish up for this upcoming week. i'm a bit apprehensive now.
bookaneer 9 months ago
I just took a look at other reviews... literally no one else expressed this issue.
I generally have a rep for taking things "too seriously," and with the current US political climate, I'm past my limit in tolerance for ill-founded stereotypes. Maybe it can be read in such a way that it doesn't come off as offensive? I don't know.
I'm kind of heartbroken, as I thoroughly enjoyed the other three Maradaine books I read.
I'll look forward to hearing what you think!
Nope, it's totally there. You're not taking things "too seriously."

And you missed the "mystical easterner" in your gripe list with how Jinx there is learning to control his magic. :D

And for all the fantasy country names, I pretty much still read this as "fantasy London." From my review of "Murder of Mages"
-"A gaslamp fantasy of Sherlockian flavor filled with magic and murder"
-"The world itself is fantasy, but could just as easily be any of the re-imagined magical Londons that populates the literary world."
bookaneer 9 months ago
Oh yes. Gotta love the Mystical Easterner thing. And, of course, the Muslims who are incredibly intolerant of magic. And the group who I felt were Jewish (although it's less unambiguous than the others, so I didn't put it in my review) who are described as making everything about money and turning everything into a transaction. And having very strict burial/mourning customs. And the fact that the Druth are the bastion of freedom and everyone else is participating in slavery, which is certainly how Americans and British think of themselves even if it is hilariously inaccurate.
My review certainly wasn't gentle, but there was a lot of criticisms I considered that I ended up leaving out. :)

I forget why, but I ended up feeling like Maradaine is a cross between Paris and London. Maybe it's the other subseries, but some aspects felt French to me. Maresca is American, so I think he's less closely tied to England and went for generalized-European-but-mostly-England.

Why do authors *do* this? Why can't they invent cultures if they don't want to do the research? Sometimes it feels like it's a dearth of creativity, but in this case, I feel like it was entirely intentional. So *why*?

Looking forward to your review!
My primary review is probably going to be a bit on the light side. It's due today and I'm rushing to finish the book, plus I'm hosting some author content on my blog (Maradine Culture Report). I'll def be hitting that it has failed to break away from "vaguely fantasy Sherlockian Europe" - though since it's not clearly an island like Britian, your interpretation makes a good bit of sense.

...THAT's the group he was using. I was like "I know this group is pulled off a RL culture... but which?" Of course, finance, burial rituals, and at conflict with the Islamic mirror group.