Right now this is something a bit different! Tough travelling was started by Fantasy Review Barn, it is now run by the wonderful Fantasy Faction. Yes this is a totally awesome re invented idea, join us every month as we tour the fantasy genre. We will take you high and low, from new releases to classics, urban through to epic. Each month we will take you in search of a different theme, trope or cliche!
The first topic is Beginnings - Here is a brief description of what the original tough guide to fantasy has to say, this from the wonderful Diana Wynne Jones!
'The Tough Guide states that you will begin in rather poor circumstances in an unimportant corner of the continent; a kitchen menial, perhaps, or a blacksmith’s apprentice. From there, the Guide advises that ‘you will be contacted by your TOUR MENTOR (normally an elderly male MAGIC USER with much experience) who will tell you what to do, which is almost certainly to discover you are a MISSING HEIR.’
Diana Wynne Jones, The Tough Guide to Fantasyland
Beginnings is an awesome theme to begin Version 2.0 of this, I have been racking my fantasy shelf and brains for a list of beginnings and here I do present my findings.
A Game Of Thrones : Book 1 of A Song Of Ice and Fire by George R R Martin
"We should go back, urged Gared as the woods began to grow dark around them. The Wildlings are dead"
This begins one of the best prologue to a fantasy series! It is dark, terrifying and then fades away to nothing as we meet the major characters of ASOIAF. Many of the characters are young and just starting on their epic journeys they will undertake, they do not all have a mentor and are quite alone on the journey. The journey is a fascinating one for these characters as well, some are heading towards bigger and greater things, others are becoming more evil. When the rest of the series is finally published!!! We can see how these journeys pan out and end.
The Alloy of Law : A Mistborn novel by Brandon Sanderson
"Wax crept along the ragged fence in a crouch, his boots scraping the dry ground. He held is Sterrion 36 up by his head, the long, silvery barrel dusted with red clay"
I love Brandon Sanderson, this sentence begins the next era in his Mistborn world. I hear you asking "Why has he picked this one?" The prologue is relevant to the book and the next one....and introduces and reintroduces readers to a world that has moved on from the last time we saw it in the Mistborn Trilogy. Again we have characters without mentors, in this book and series the characters rely on each other and trust each other (although there is a mentor like character that does appear later on..) When the last book is published we will see where these characters journeys end, they have been up, down and up again, I hope for the best for all of them, there is always another secret.
The Name of the Wind : Day 1 of The Kingkiller Chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss
"It was Night again, The Waystone Inn lay in silence, and it was a silence of three parts."
This prologue is haunting, it will stay with you and haunt your dreams! The prologue introduces us to how lonely Kvothe is and the situation is has ended up in. Kvothe is perhaps the more traditional one on this list, he has mentors who guide him (both academically and in life lessons!) He is however only just beginning to realise he is something special, as you follow his journey you will realise this. He has some incredible lows, then real highs and about everything in between. He is set for something extraordinary, with little bit of help and guidance he will get there.
So there we are my list of beginnings what do you think? Let me know in the comments so that we can discuss! I am so looking forward to next topic we are doing which is...Assassins!