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Start your review of Red Moon and Black Mountain. Sep 17, Gabi rated it really liked it Shelves: books-in-my-shelf. When I was a young girl Joy Chant was part of the triarchy from whom I bought and read everything I could get my hands on the other two being Joan D. Vinge and Elizabeth A.source
Red Moon and Black Mountain
So I thought it was about time after all those years to get re-acquainted with my childhood dreams. As things turned out I could not remember a single character, scene or bit of the worldbuilding from this book here. I remembered that I loved it, but the rest completely had vanished into the mists of times lost. So it When I was a young girl Joy Chant was part of the triarchy from whom I bought and read everything I could get my hands on the other two being Joan D.
So it was with great anticipation that I started this book, reminded myself that it is from the ies, that it is a book for young readers, that I should be lenient with my nostalgia … Thankfully those reminders weren't necessary. Yes, it feels a bit dated in the way it emulates in parts Lord of the Rings like so many Fantasy books from those times did , but for a book for children it has surprising depth and wonderful feeling for worldbuilding. Three children are transported into a fantastical world in a kind of Narnia meets Tolkien way but of the good sort. The emphasis is on the elder brother and his chosen-one fate.
Here is the strength of Joy Chant's writing in so far that she portrays the young man not only as the coming-of-age hero, but with so much self awareness, doubts about warfare and musings about the relationship to nature, that it stood out for me. I'm not sure young me got all those layers, all the more nowadays me enjoyed the dive into these depths. A children's book with thoughfulness. A wonderful second acquaintance with my nostalgia. I'm immensely looking forward to the second Vandarei book.
I read very few children's books as a child my tastes ran to mythology. Reading this as an adult, I noticed a lot more about the everyday lives of the people of Vandarei than I probably would've as a child. I also noticed the philosophical complexity.
Black Mountain () - IMDb
The childhood fantasies Chant records as an adult might always have been philosophically complex, and they surely are now-- there's no doubt that this is not a simple 'good vs evil' story, if read with attention to the discussions, rather than I read very few children's books as a child my tastes ran to mythology. The childhood fantasies Chant records as an adult might always have been philosophically complex, and they surely are now-- there's no doubt that this is not a simple 'good vs evil' story, if read with attention to the discussions, rather than just the pageantry.
For example, this may be the first book where I read the flat statement that 'the end does NOT justify the means'. But it's an equivocal statement. The Vandarin don't intend not to kill people: they just refuse to meddle with their minds. It's also probably the first book I've encountered where the fear of a 'warrior' is broadened to include not only the fear of dying, but also the fear of killing. We're told in our society that nobody who's sanctioned to kill has any right to be hesitant to use that sanction. But it's not, of course. Still, the 'enemy army' are killed without apparent remorse--nobody seems to care about the suffering and griefs of THEIR families.
Then there's the retort of the Earth Witch, who points out that the others scorn them because their religion involves the shedding of blood--but that in this battle, those who despise the Earth Witches have shed more blood in a night than the Earth Witches do in a century. It's not sensible to expect answers to these questions in one book--but at least they've been raised, instead of ignored as in far too many other books.
Jun 30, Robert Defrank rated it really liked it. A lost classic of the genre that draws inspiration from Narnia and Tolkien. The basic formula: three kids find themselves snatched out of our reality into a fantastic one, where forces of good and evil vie for dominion. Some exceptional world building is here, and elegant use of language, but I just wish I had read it when I was fourteen: it would have made a much stronger impression.
Jan 13, Ccaywood rated it it was amazing. Chant was as skilled at world-building as Tolkien and she too confronted the not-so-happily-ever-after that makes her characters psychologically true. And I think her Dark Lord may be a superior evocation of evil. But, aside from all that, it is a great story with wonderful individuals, glorious landscapes, breathless suspense, and deep emotion. And that's what I want from a fantasy. Nov 09, Fletcher Vredenburgh rated it really liked it. What matters is the story: creation — or at least the world — is at stake, the outcome will be settled between the forces of good and evil, and the tale is told from multiple viewpoints.
Red Moon and Black Mountain shows how it can be done in under three hundred pages. Nov 04, Juho Pohjalainen rated it did not like it. This book has a decent enough premise, of a set of siblings being transported from our world into a realm of warfare and sorcery, where they must fight the forces of darkness. It follows through well enough - in theory, at least - with the children being forcibly separated and tackling the world in their own different ways, one being stuck with a princess, the other going native among some local tribes.
Each character has their own personalities, experiences a fair bit of growth, and the This book has a decent enough premise, of a set of siblings being transported from our world into a realm of warfare and sorcery, where they must fight the forces of darkness. Each character has their own personalities, experiences a fair bit of growth, and the harships they face are real. Shame that it's all completely marred by the writing.
The author has an awful grasp of the way of words and prose and how to put it all together. The narrative meanders, the descriptions are dry and shallow, the dialogue wooden and unbelievable, and on the whole none of it fits with the story that is told. It doesn't just not grab me - it's actively pushing me away. It's like plodding through tar or quicksand. I struggled halfway through that field, then figuring that it would not get any better than this, gave up and picked up something else.
Maybe it's just me, though.