Non writing pursuits

Best of 2008, #1 – Lamplighter, by DM Cornish

This title wasn’t the given that I thought it might be for top read of 2008. It was tight between this one and #2 for a while. Both were great reads for different reasons, but in the end, Lamplighter took out the number one spot for the year.

Why? Well, I found that there was just so much to love about this book, and I could probably go on at length. For the first time in a very long time, I realised what it was to pine for the next Harry Potter, and what that whole craze was about. Lamplighter is book two, in the Monster Blood Tattoo series. I had to wait a whole year and a bit to find out what happened since the first book, Lamplighter!

In short, it filled me with the childish delight of anticipating and waiting for the next book. Also, the series so far has filled me with the same sort of wonder that I had as a teenager reading things like the Dragonlance series. I was in there with the characters, in this strange, exciting new world. That is one of the things that people are most likely to mention about this particular series; its world. It’s a curious mix of medieval/renaissance Germany, biopunk and swords and sorcery. I think. It’s really rather hard to explain.

Book two continues where book one left off, following Rossamund, the boy with the misfortune of having a girls name. Book one was a little kiddish to start off, but then found it’s wind. Book two was definitely a little more adult, dumping Rossamund in the thick of battle in his new appointment as an Emperor’s lamplighter. The plot quickly thickens, and by the end, it ends at the worse possible place. Leaving me waiting until 2010 before book three comes out.

I can’t rave enough about this book, and as a librarian, I do, at every given opportunity. It’s a great world, and a great read, something to lose yourself in that just doesn’t feel as if it’s been done somewhere before. And I love that the two books so far, in two different ways, have this strange feeling as if something else is going on in the world. But because you experience at the rate an awareness of a 12 year old boy, you never really see everything you want.

Great stuff! I wonder what will be the Top 5 of 2009?


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