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Pony Stories 123

09 May

Testing, testing, 1,2,3. Wait, that makes no sense. You people can never hear me through this thing because WordPress blogs make a terrible event sound system. Good thing, since all I’ve got to share is casually written visual text. Speakers would display that very poorly. Anyway, today is another themed post. Two stories directly connected to each other for one huge epic plot.

Lines and Webs by Airstream

Been a while since I’ve read a good epic fanfic. This one doesn’t disappoint as it deals with world-shaking events and centuries long manipulations. I don’t want to say too much as it has a couple of big reveals (of varying impact, but don’t want to spoil something another reader might like more then I did). However, there is one thing I feel I should mention because it it something many people have strong feelings about one way or another. One of the characters from the show acts borderline evil, but I felt it was handled well. If you really don’t want any spoilers just take a recommendation with cavet. It did have good magical action/fight scenes.

If you want a bit more detail about that warning keep reading. The character mentioned is Princess Celestia herself. For most of the story I wouldn’t call her evil, just misguided. Really far over in ‘the ends justify the means’ territory. To the point of casually using low-level mind manipulation, as well as other fairly ick tactics. Thinking about it a bit during the second story, some of the stuff she does at the end of this story probably slides her closer into the evil area. So yeah, evil Celestia. Still, good story despite that.

Dusk’s Dangerous Game by Airstream

Pretty good. I’d give this a 3.5 to the first one’s 4 stars. It was mostly 4 stars, but the big finale was disappointing and I’d give that part 3 stars. It is pretty much a straight continuation of the first story (Lines and Webs) and the two should really be considered one big story. Most of what I said about that one applies to this one, except for the finale. It just seemed kind of empty. There was no big decision to be made, the result was basically a big compromise where everybody gets off and nothing is really resolved. The bits after it were pretty good, the picking up the pieces and ponies dealing with the aftermath of the huge war. If you liked the first one you’ll like this one. If you didn’t like the first one, well, reading this one isn’t going to be any different. Princess Celestia isn’t nearly as interesting in this one, sadly. She goes even more toward tyrant. In the first one it felt like she was simply using the ends justify the means. In this one it was more she was right and she’ll burn any city that disagrees with her to ash. So, pretty much evil. Princess Candace almost has a really cool character building moment, that is pretty much stomped flat and ignored in the big finale. Which sucked because it involved her using her domain of love in a interesting way to fight against a gigantic swarm of windigos.

As for the two, book series as a whole, there were some cool worldbuilding elements. I really liked the Gale Dancers. A Spanish (I think?) Pegasus clan that lives in the colder northern regions. They are a warrior clan that every winter fights against the migration of windigos to keep them out of Equestria proper. It was a nice touch of worldbuilding that added something without trying to make it a blanket thing. Pegasus related, but not trying to make it a broad brushstroke for all Pegasi. There was also some interesting stuff about the end of the conflict against Discord, as well as what happened in the years right after Princess Luna’s exile. Changelings pop up as well, and there are a few interesting bits there. Nothing big, but using them as simply another sentient race is a pretty neat thing in itself. Showing that the attack on Canterlot was the move of a desperate hive and if they have a more regular food source they aren’t nearly as bad.

This is in the same genre as The Immortal Game. This one is pretty close to that, lacking only a bit of polish and maybe another editing pass to tighten a few things up. I think this set of two stories would have been better as either one huge one, or several shorter ones. It would have made a good trilogy actually.

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Posted by on May 9, 2014 in Books 2014, Ponies, Reviews

 

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