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Silmarillion Blues : Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age

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For a lot of us, this final chapter is what we started this journey for.  This is the final pieces in the set up for the story of the One Ring that leads us to The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.

Sauron, long sided with Morgoth, claims to repent of his deeds under Morgoth, but not his pride.  So when summoned to Valar for a sentence he departs to hide within Middle-earth and fall back into his old ways.  Meanwhile, life goes on in Middle Earth.  Cultures rise, cities succeed and fail.  Men multiply and "most of them turn to evil."  Middle Earth seems forgotten by the Valar, at least to Sauron, so he moves forward with his plans and manipulations.

With his One Ring he perceives all things done by the lesser rings, but the Elves were aware of his use of the Ring and so removed theirs and hid them away, refusing to hand them over when he demanded them.  Thes were imbued with the power to ward of the toll of time, and were forged by Celebrimbor, untouched by Sauron even though…

March Read: A Wrinkle in Time

Look.  I made a mistake.  I thought it would be great to re-read the book the month the movie came out.  I know better.  But I have a copy in hand, and it shouldn't take too long to read.

I never read A Wrinkle in Time as a kid.  My first foray into the story was at 17, shortly before going off to college.  It was a neat odd little story to me then, one that I left being well aware that certain parts didn't make sense but that I enjoyed it overall none the less.  So giving it a go again while I play catch up on the rest of my life, the reasons for which are a whole different post!

Silmarillion Blues : Akallabêth

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Here we are in the end, the Downfall of Númenor.  The story tells us of the division of Men, those that fell under the Shadow of Morgoth, those who refused all calls, and those who allied with the Eldar and Valar, known as the Edain or the Faithful.  After the fall of Morgoth the Edain were given a land of their own in the West, enriched by the gifts of the Valar, and they were led to it by a star in the sky.  So begins the history of the Dúnedain.  

The Dúnedain resemble the Eldar in many ways, tall, wise, glorious, long-lived, and with few children.  They grew skilled in crafts and loved the sea, though forbidden to sail further West than they could still see their shores.  To them the Eldar brought the seedling of Celeborn, the White Tree that marks their standards.  Eventually the Dúnedain returned to Middle-earth, unable to sail West.  To the men living under the Shadow, the Númenóreans were glorious and aweful, strong and skilled, bringing back to Middle-earth something resembli…

[Book Review] Tricks for Free

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Tricks for Free (InCryptid #7) / Seanan McGuire
Previously reviewed Chaos Choreography (InCryptid #5)Magic for Nothing (InCryptid #6) Ok folks, I have some really bad news about this book.

There are no Aeslin mice in it.

 But they have their own novella at the end (and it's kind of adorable).

In Magic for Nothing I was a little harsh on Antimony... and what I said still holds true, she needed to grow up and she did.  So now we get an Annie who has learned in a way she never knew before what exactly it means to be a Price, perhaps still with resentment and issues with Verity, but that is tempered with understanding as well.  I like this Annie.

Hiding out from the Covenant (and her family), Antimony has donned an old identity and getting by as an employee at the Lowryland amusement park while she attempts to get her life back together.  Life, on the other hand, has its own plans for her.  Lowryland turns out to be run by a cabal of magic users who offer to teach her to control the fir…

[Book Review] Bingo Love

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Bingo Love / Tee Franklin, Jenn St-Onge (ill), and Joy San (ill)

I... don't even know where to start summarizing this story or reviewing beyond this: you will cry.  This story brings all of the Feels and will rip out your heart.  And you will love it all the more for it.

Buy, read it, add it to your library, it's worth it.

From the publisher:
When Hazel Johnson and Mari McCray met at church bingo in 1963, it was love at first sight. Forced apart by their families and society, Hazel and Mari both married young men and had families. Decades later, now in their mid-’60s, Hazel and Mari reunite again at a church bingo hall. Realizing their love for each other is still alive, what these grandmothers do next takes absolute strength and courage. From TEE FRANKLIN (NAILBITER’s “THE OUTFIT,” Love is Love) and JENN ST-ONGE (Jem & The Misfits), BINGO LOVE is a touching story of love, family, and resiliency that spans over 60 years.

Advance Reader Copy courtesy of Image Comics in…

Silmarillion Blues : Quenta Silmarillion : XIV. Of the Voyage of Eärendil and the War of Wrath

In this final chapter of Quenta Silmarilion, I would like to propose we rename (or subtitle) the "Quenta Silmarillion" to "Fëanor & Sons ruin everything."

When Tuor and Idril sailed West they left behind their son Eärendil, who likewise heard the call of the sea.  We also know of Eärendil to some extent because of one of his sons, the so called "Half-elven" Elrond.  I'm not sure how being born of a half-elf father and an elven mother makes him a half-elf, but so be it.  So with the aid of Círdan the Shipwright, Eärendil built a shift and explored the sea, leaving his wife behind.

Guess what comes next!

If you guessed Fëanor's sons ruin everything, you are correct!  They go storm the castle, slaughtering the defenders and ruining Sirion.  Elrond and Eros are taken captive, but Elwing is rescued by Ulmo... yet again demonstrating that no one ever listens to the powerful figures they should.  Elwing, in the shape of a bird, reaches her husband, …

Silmarillion Blues : Quenta Silmarillion : XXIII. Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin

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Why no, I didn't completely forget to do this post... (yes, yes I did).

After looking at Húrin and the fall of Doriath, we now look at his nephew and the fall of Gondor.

Tuor was raised in fosterage among the Grey Elves, until they sought to make their way to the Havens of Sirion, and he was captured by the Easterlings.  There is something of a literary tradition at work here, a Hero captured and enslaved, only to escape before meeting his Fate/Doom.  After three years in thraldom he escaped and proceeded to make life a living hell for the Easterlings, until their king placed a price on his head and Ulmo called on Tuor.  And so Tuor makes his way to Belegaer the Great Sea, where he met Ulmo who bade him to seek out the hidden kingdom of Gondolin, gifting him with a cloak to hide him in shadow from his enemies, and with a message for the Elves of Gondolin.

Well, what happens next falls within a bit of a pattern.  Tuor goes forth, and gives Ulmo's message/warning to Turgon, High K…