2 books I read and why you should too
You might be thinking; “you didn’t write these books — why you pushing them?” Cuz they’re good fucking books, man!
Dig deep on these 2. They are worth your time.
1. Eye of the World: The Wheel of Time (Book One), Robert Jordan
WARNING: if you’re about to read this, you’re starting a 14 books series. You’re gonna be sucked in, so gird your loins.
The Eye of the World is a classic fantasy book: Farmer boy and friends get mixed up with magic woman. Tragedy strikes; the gang leaves home with said magic woman; adventure awaits.
You’ve read this before, right? BUT…
Robert Jordan does a helluva job writing it. The mystery and the build up to the Big Reveal is on point. I would know; I’ve read my fair share of fantasy books.
What surprised me:
What I’ve grown to like is the amount of time Jordan spends building the sense of place the characters have with their hometown and how leaving everything they know becomes insidious, threatening their motivation and purposefulness.
Since I haven’t been chased by Trollocs or bewitched by a bedazzled knife, this aspect of the book is refreshingly relatable and I would go so far as to say the most relatable storyline I’ve read in a fantasy novel.
2. Lawrence in Arabia: War, Deceit, Imperial Folly and the Making of the Modern Middle East, Scott Anderson
Quick disclaimer: I actually listened to this book. Distance relationships suck, but it did up my “reading” game.
If you stop on the title Lawrence in Arabia you might think this sounds fun: The true telling of T. E. Lawrence made famous by the movie Lawrence of Arabia.
Well, you’d be right and I don’t want the last part of the title to scare you off. It almost did for me.
This guy, T. E. Lawrence was the tits. Also, like the weirdest SOB too. Like “the kid who used to keep his hand on the super hot hood of a car way after the competition was over just because” weird.
He’s in the military when World War I starts and has virtually the only on-the-ground knowledge of the Middle East in the British intelligence service. So this somewhat lowly officer gets a TON of influence in determining future regional policy. And for the most part he does a great job.
Along the way you learn some stuff about the Middle East and meet pompous, wealthy assholes from the west that try to pillage the Middle East for all it’s worth.
What surprised me:
After all this adventure — being shot at, imprisoned, fighting battles — T.E. Lawrence makes it home and dies in a motorcycle accident. So it goes.