In the car I'm currently rereading the Dark Tower series (by Stephen King). I had read the books as they were published, so it had been, what, 15 or 20 years since I read the first one! Very nicely, it was just like reading them again for the first time. Problem is, I'm missing a book. #6, Song of Susannah, is MIA, and I finished #5 yesterday. I turned my apartment upside down last night (discovering three boxes I never unpacked when I moved in... five years ago!), but still no book. I recall that it was my least favorite book of the series (I really hate her as a character and the whole pregnancy thing seemed pointless), so I wonder if I threw it out. Thing is, I never throw books out...
So today at lunchtime I have to go buy a new copy of it. I'll have (assumedly) two copies of my least favorite book in the series.
At home I'm reading the His Dark Materials series. (Readers of SGA fanfic have probably read trinityofone's Dæmonology which combined SGA and HDM.) It's quite an amazing series, and rather hard to describe for a number of reasons:
- The story isn't the best story I've ever read, but the writing is just amazing. His ideas, how he writes, how he describes things, might be some of the best I've ever read.
- It's billed as a 'young adult' book, but I have never, ever, ever encountered a book which pulled so few punches. Plot elements, deaths, harsh treatment of kids, I'm left boggling over so many things. (There was a character death in it, and it was just so real, it didn't feel like a "written death", nothing like a death you'd find in a book, it was just a death. That probably doesn't make much sense, sorry.)
- The author (Philip Pullman) somehow makes logical conclusions to RL things that make perfect sense once you read them, but I had never ever thought of on my own. For example, one of the things that really disturbed me because of how perfectly this "fits" RL:
The Church is a large part of one of his worlds, and has more power than in our RL world. Known by and available to only the innermost circles of the Church is something called preemptive atonement -- you could do atonement every day for years and build up a "positive credit", then when you did something bad it wouldn't really count against you. The Church needed someone to do something bad (which would be a one of the biggest sin per their own rules), but because one character had so much preemptive atonement built up, the Church let him do this really bad thing and told him it wouldn't be a sin... all because the Church needed this bad thing done. (Being vague to try to avoid spoilers.)
Once I read that, I had to pause. I could totally see RL religions having something like that, some little "out" they could use when they needed to do something against their own rules.
FFXI: I've not been doing much of anything lately, thus the lack of posts. I've been working with my fellowship NPC a lot (he got two weapon upgrades and one quest last night), since leveling/questing him makes it feel like I'm still making "progress" in the game. I've not XPed on any job since last week, and don't really feel like returning to it yet.
I'm going to see if I can trigger my NPC's G1 tonight, and if so I'll do that. (Can you get it before he hits level 50? Mine is still 46.)