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Arbie's Unoriginally Titled Book Blog

It's a blog! Mainly of book reviews.

Currently reading

Broken Angels
Richard K. Morgan
Progress: 56/468 pages
Introduction to Topology
Bert Mendelson
Progress: 10/224 pages
Basics of Plasma Astrophysics
Claudio Chiuderi, Marco Velli
Progress: 58/250 pages
Ursula K. Le Guin: The Complete Orsinia: Malafrena / Stories and Songs (The Library of America)
Brian Attebery, Ursula K. Le Guin
Progress: 454/700 pages
A Student's Guide to Lagrangians and Hamiltonians
Patrick Hamill
Progress: 7/180 pages
Complete Poems, 1904-1962
E.E. Cummings
Progress: 166/1102 pages
The Complete Plays and Poems
E.D. Pendry, J.C. Maxwell, Christopher Marlowe
She Stoops to Conquer and Other Comedies (Oxford World's Classics)
Henry Fielding, David Garrick, Oliver Goldsmith
Progress: 164/448 pages
Gravitation (Physics Series)
Kip Thorne;Kip S. Thorne;Charles W. Misner;John Archibald Wheeler;John Wheeler
Progress: 48/1215 pages
I Am a Cat
Graeme Wilson, Aiko Ito, Sōseki Natsume
Progress: 410/638 pages
The Hidden Coronet - Catherine Fisher Volume 3 is a return to form after the redundant volume 2 of this series. There are revelations about the Sekoi, the mysterious aboriginal cat-like people of the planet, Anara. The plot goes to some unexpected places and, unlike the previous volume, the quest makes sense.

Two of the protagonists seem to develop; Carys and the Sekoi. The Keeper and his scholar seem much the same as when we first met them at least in terms of character.

There are various mutant/genetically modified creatures on Anara; one of them lives in water and is called an Avanc. This is an Anglicisation of the Welsh, Afanc, a mythical monster. There's a great sculpture of one outside the Betws y Coed Tourist Information Centre. Go look if you're ever there. (It's a picturesque village in North Wales.) The girl protagonist also has a Welsh name; Carys. So I think Fisher wanted to sneak some Welsh culture to Anara. Maybe one of the Makers was Welsh, or a group of the colonists?

The Galen/The Crow is interesting in the context of some of Fisher's later works. He's pretty unpleasant and deeply flawed, despite being driven towards goals that are good and unselfish. In Corbenic and Crown Of Acorns the main protagonists are similar but less sympathetic Galen. That trend started here I think. These flawed characters seem very realistic but limited sympathy for the protagonists weakens those books. So weirdly Fisher has got better and worse in the last decade or so.