Junior Ganymede
We endeavor to give satisfaction

Hobbes and Hobbits

June 06th, 2014 by G.

What if our imagination should become as a little child’s? What if receiving the kingdom of heaven as a little child mostly meant imagining it differently? Not stern and beautiful like Milton, but jolly and abundant.

Last night I came home to my little boy wearing a red bath robe with a red bandanna on his head pirate-style, a garbage bad tucked into his neckline for a beard, and another garbage bag dragging behind his red trike. He was Santa Claus, he said. My littlest girl was wearing a tan quilt with sticks stuck in her braids. She was the reindeer. The reins were from a swing.

Hobbes and Hobbits
The imagination of children is whimsical. They don’t see the unseen world as eldritch or fey. To them, the transcendental and supernatural are friendly, fun, whimsical, domestic.

The childish imagination is Calvin and Hobbes, Narnia, the Hobbit. When the Abrahamic trial comes, it trusts, because it believes that something golden must lie out there in darkness.

“If you’re thirsty, you may drink.”

They were the first words she had heard since Scrubb had spoken to her on the edge of the cliff. For a second she stared here and there, wondering who had spoken. Then the voice said again, “If you are thirsty, come and drink,” and of course she remembered what Scrubb had said about animals talking in that other world, and realized that it was the lion speaking. Anyway, she had seen its lips move this time, and the voice was not like a man’s. It was deeper, wilder, and stronger; a sort of heavy, golden voice. It did not make her any less frightened than she had been before, but it made her frightened in rather a different way.

“Are you not thirsty?” said the lion.

“I’m dying of thirst,” said Jill.

“Then drink,” said the lion.

“May I — could I — would you mind going away while I do?” said Jill.

The Lion answered this only by a look and a very low growl. And as Jill gazed at its motionless bulk, she realized that she might as well have asked the whole mountain to move aside for her convenience.

The delicious rippling noise of the stream was driving her nearly frantic.

“Will you promise not to — do anything to me, if I do come?” said Jill.

“I make no promise,” said the Lion.

Jill was so thirsty now that, without noticing it, she had come a step nearer.

“Do you eat girls?” she said.

“I have swallowed up girls and boys, women and men, kings and emperors, cities and realms,” said the Lion. It didn’t say this as if it were boasting, nor as if it were sorry, nor as if it were angry. It just said it.

“I daren’t come and drink,” said Jill

“Then you will die of thirst,” said the Lion.

“Oh dear!” said Jill, coming another step nearer. “I suppose I must go and look for another stream then.”

“There is no other stream,” said the Lion.

Even Lord of the Rings has childlike elements. It has hobbits, the Shire, the last Homely House, Strider. Even its orderliness, its insistence on getting the details right for their own sake, is childish.

Perhaps, instead of standing in awe at the works of God, we should wriggle with delight.

Comments (3)
Filed under: Deseret Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,
June 06th, 2014 07:13:26

Awake in the Night Land

April 14th, 2014 by G.

The Last Redoubt

John C. Wright’s book Awake in the Night Land is out.

I can’t really express how good it is. This is a book that I will be rereading and thinking about for the rest of my life. It is a book that made my eyes shine when my wife walked into the room. It is touched with holiness. (more…)

Comments (25)
Filed under: Birkenhead Drill,Deseret Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,
April 14th, 2014 10:08:26

James Stoddard, the High House

March 25th, 2014 by G.

May I make a book recommendation? I just finished reading a fantasy in the old style, where peace and right and order are restored by the end. It’s James Stoddard’s The High House.

It was also, without being ostentatious about it, a pious book, about how the ordinary rituals of our lives reflect and maintain the whole of the universe.
There is even one scene that will strike the alert reader as curiously Mormon.

Comments (0)
Filed under: Deseret Review | Tags: , , , ,
March 25th, 2014 10:37:49

James Stoddart on Lin Carter

March 19th, 2014 by G.

Let me recommend this John C. Wright post on James Stoddart and Lin Carter, and this excellent Nightland’s story that I found praised in the comments there.

Comments (0)
Filed under: Deseret Review | Tags: , , , , ,
March 19th, 2014 14:13:51

The Last of All Suns

March 14th, 2014 by G.

John C. Wright has a new book of novellas coming out. I’ve read one of them. It is really good. Among the best science fiction stories I’ve ever read. It’s only flaw is that its a little talky. It circumscribes fantasy, SF, and TF.

Sanderson’s Words of Radiance is now out. It’s the sequel to the justly-praised Way of Kings. I bought Words, but I feel the need to get back up to speed on Way of Kings first. Anyone have any suggestions? Preferably something short of just rereading Way.

Comments (9)
Filed under: Deseret Review | Tags: , , ,
March 14th, 2014 10:30:05

Yes, Virginia, There is a St. Nick

December 30th, 2013 by G.

John C. Wright pens a Christmas story, of an unusual visit by an unusual St. Nick.

Comments (0)
Filed under: Deseret Review | Tags: , , , ,
December 30th, 2013 07:12:24

Ted Chiang’s Science Fiction

December 16th, 2013 by G.

He’s very good.  Free short stories collected here.

Comments (2)
Filed under: Deseret Review | Tags: , , , , , ,
December 16th, 2013 14:39:47

Lunar Penitence

May 09th, 2013 by G.

This is one of the most horrifying pieces of fiction I’ve read.

Comments (4)
Filed under: Deseret Review | Tags: , , , , , ,
May 09th, 2013 09:45:01

Free Book–The Wardog’s Coin

May 03rd, 2013 by G.

Free today and tomorrow. Recommended.

Comments (0)
Filed under: Deseret Review | Tags: , , , , , ,
May 03rd, 2013 09:22:03

Orson Scott Card’s Lost Gates and Gate Thief

April 04th, 2013 by G.

I just finished Gate Thief, the second book is Card’s Mithermage trilogy. The first book was a lot of fun. The second book–I don’t recommend it, unless and until the last book comes out and gives us an idea whether the series as a whole is worth reading. (more…)

Comments (6)
Filed under: Deseret Review | Tags: ,
April 04th, 2013 11:27:15

Free, Good Book

March 12th, 2013 by G.

The End of Earth and Sky.
I bought this when it came out and am anticipating the sequel.

Comments (1)
Filed under: Deseret Review | Tags: , , ,
March 12th, 2013 06:52:46

God is Fantastically Epic

February 15th, 2013 by G.

Here are two posts on Catholic-themed SF and religiously-serious epic fantasy that are rich veins of book recommendations.

Comments (0)
Filed under: Deseret Review | Tags: , , , , , ,
February 15th, 2013 11:51:27

That’s No Monster, That’s A Morlock!

October 08th, 2012 by G.

Scifi writer Wright has a stab at defining the genre, with some success: (more…)

Comments (2)
Filed under: Deseret Review,Martian Rose | Tags: , , , , ,
October 08th, 2012 12:31:52

More Free E. James Stone

January 23rd, 2012 by G.

Comments (1)
Filed under: Deseret Review | Tags: , , , , , ,
January 23rd, 2012 10:09:28

Free SF Story

January 13th, 2012 by G.

Eric James Stone casts his pearls before swine, today only.

Comments (0)
Filed under: Deseret Review | Tags: , , ,
January 13th, 2012 09:04:49