Wednesday, November 7, 2012

SUNS, SUNS, SUNS, Here they Come!

Welcome to yet another group read at Kate of Mind, this one of (at least) the first five novels of Gene Wolfe's famous "Solar Cycle", The Book of the New Sun, consisting of, for our purposes, Shadow of the Torturer, Claw of the Concilator, Sword of the Lictor, Citadel of the Autarch, and the sort-of stand-alone coda Urth of the New Sun. It's a smaller group than I re-read The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings for over the summer, only consisting right now of myself and SJ over at The Snobbery* for sure, but Alastair Reynolds and a few others intimated that they might join us, too.

At any rate, we agreed not to work off a schedule this time; it began to feel too much like work, Puttin' the Blog in Balrog did, after a while, and there are challenges enough to be had in taking on these books without the added psychological burden of deadlines, self-imposed or otherwise.

We're also, because we are geniuses, starting up during National Novel Writing Month. Which is to say that irregularity will be, as it were, de rigeur. For instance, SJ still isn't quite ready to start yet, so while I'm waiting for her to be ready (and she is participating in NaNoWriMo for the first time ever, and is raising four children (plus husband and her father), and... and... and...), I'm having a look at yet another Gene Wolfe, that is brand new to me, that is sometimes considered to be a prequel of sorts to The Book of the New Sun, The Fifth Head of Cerberus.

Call it my version of SJ's pre-PtBiB examination of The Silmarillion.

And yes, if people are down with it after we finish Urth of the New Sun, we sure can move on to the Book of the Long Sun (four novels) and the Book of the Short Sun (three novels). I will myself, but am fully prepared for others to drop off. This is not because I consider myself more reader than you, but because I already know I like them and have been itching for an excuse to return to this world.

Meanwhile, there's still plenty of time to hunt up copies of these novels and join us. If you do want to join us, leave a comment or hit me up on Twitter. I'll do as SJ did with PtBiB and keep a links roundup for any posts folks write related to this.

*Who owes me for my slogging through all of the Harry Potter novels AND all of the Dark Tower books this year.

UPDATE: And lo did the Great and Terrible Oliveri just hit me with this slab of awesome, which I unilaterally and without discussion declare the theme song for this here readalong.


  1. FOUR KIDS!!!!!

    Um, yeah. Lemme try to finish this AR ARC and I'll be ready. December needs to be set aside to finish everything I have going on my Currently Reading list, and I'm so far behind on NaNo now...bluh.


    1. Oh good, then I have time to have another look at THE SOLAR LABYRINTH, too. Yes, I have a collection of critical essays about BotNS. Shut up.

  2. Haven't read the New Suns in decades. Kian ah jyne yee? I shall have to put my Wade Through Sir Walter Scott aside for a time. And then, I'd like to redo Jack Vance's Dying Earth books.

    1. I'm usually in the mood for some Vance after I re-read the Solar Cycle, too! I've been parceling those out, though, so there are still some of those books I haven't read yet! Hooray!

  3. Hmmm, that's a lot of books, I'll maybe dip my toes in the water, see if I like it. :)


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