Tough Traveling – Unique Flora
Nathan over at Fantasy Review Barn is the mastermind of Tough Traveling. What’s Tough Traveling? Pretty much, it’s a weekly feature on Thursdays where we dig around to come up with examples of common tropes in fantasy, using Diana Wynne Jones’ The Tough Guide to Fantasyland as our inspiration and guide. Nathan has invited one and all to join in the fun, so feel free to come up with your own lists and add the link on Nathan’s weekly post, which will also contain (unleash) the next weeks theme. So let the fun begin …
This weeks theme? UNIQUE FLORA
Self-explanatory. If you know of a plant that is either not on earth, or doesn’t act the same way in fantasyland as it does on earth, then you can consider it unique. Have fun.
So, I felt indecisive this week and seemed to just pick books that had multiple examples in them, and keep it at that. I also feel like I am really missing some!! But
Possibly all the Plants and Trees from The Mirror Empire by Kameron Hurley
Mother nature is given a cruel and dangerous twist in this world, there are plants that can melt away your skin, pitcher plants that can devour people. And if you think you are safe because you don’t see any near by at the moment? Think again. Trees can walk, they can come to your supposed safe place and destroy you. Yeah, you’re not safe. These are not plants from some B-movie, these are the plants of your nightmares.
Clock trees from The Magicians by Lev Grossman
Like the trees in The Mirror Empire, these trees can also walk. They are identifiable by, you guessed it, a clock on their trunks. It’s a bit silly, strange, but quite fitting for the fairytale land of Fillory. I suppose the clock trees were made and did not just evolve, but still. They are strange and take on a life of their own.
Gillyweed and The Whomping Tree from Harry Potter by J. K. Rowling
I couldn’t decide, so I’m listing both. Gillyweed has the unique property of allowing a person that has ingested it to actually breath underwater for a time. I like this entry because it is neither creepy or deadly. It’s actually quite useful! And then there is the whomping tree, who might strike me down if I don’t list it. There’s probably tons of others from this fun trope filled series, but I’ll keep my examples to those two. 🙂
Trees and Plants in Dark Eden by Chris Beckett
I love the plant life in Dark Eden. The story takes place on a sunless planet, but it is not completely dark thanks to the the unique flora. The world is eerie, yet has a beauty to it. Light (and not just white light, but variable colors of light) comes from trees and flowers. But, it’s not all just beauty and light, you have to be careful because the trees also provide heat hot enough to burn.
Weirwood Trees from A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin
I kept debating about adding this one. In fact, I’m adding it a bit late, but decided to do so within a spoiler tag. If you haven’t read A Dance with Dragons, this could be a spoiler:View Spoiler »Bran is able to see the memories of the Heart Tree in Winterfell while using his green sight. While it does take his magical ability to see it, I decided it still counts because I don’t think our trees have memories like that. I could be wrong, maybe our normal trees here on earth do have memories, its hard to know without a way to communicate with them. But I strongly suspect they do not, at least not to the point of remembering human conversations and replaying them much like video. So Bran’s ability to use these trees to see conversations and events in the past makes me think they are just a bit more than a normal tree. They also have the faces that may have been carved by the children of the forest, but still have wept what look like bloody tears. « Hide Spoiler
Honorable Mention: And, how on earth could I not include Audrey II? Seriously. Here it is:
10 thoughts on “Tough Traveling – Unique Flora”
Ahh I love Little Shop of Horrors! I completely forgot about Harry Potter, there are some good ones there.
Tammy @ Books, Bones & Buffy recently posted…Waiting on Wednesday  ILLUMINAE by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
Oh, my. I seem to have been missing out on a powerful element of pop culture! I’ve never heard of Audrey II but she (?) sounds… interesting? 🙂
The Dark Eden world sounds beautiful!
Kaja recently posted…Tough Travels: Unique Flora
I’m so disappointed in myself – here I ran with a tree theme, and I completely missed the trees of The Mirror Empire.
The plant life in Dark Eden was one one of the reasons I enjoyed that story so much. It just felt pretty unique and have it a very distinct vibe. Because it can’t be that bright out with just plants lighting the planet.
Anne @ Lovely Literature recently posted…DNF’d: Murderess review
Feed me Seymour! I love Shop of Horrors.
Seems like Mirror Empire was a good choice for this week.
I love that you got the Whomping tree too – I completely forgot about it.
Lynn recently posted…‘Feed me Seymour, feed me now!’
The Mirror Empire was a must. And I look forward to the bizarre trees in Dark Eden!
Mogsy @ BiblioSanctum recently posted…#ThrowBackThursday – Graphic Novel Review: Wolverine: Old Man Logan by Mark Millar
Thank god someone knows Audrey 2. My wife and I are aghast that there was not more mentions.
Nathan (@reviewbarn) recently posted…Tough Travels- Unique Flora
Heh, stuff from The Mirror Empire popped into my head as soon as I saw this topic! :p
Bibliotropic recently posted…I Will be Silent
Audrey… I’ve never seen the Musical nor heard the songs, but I was once so bored to read a complete description of it. Also I remember laughing once, when somebody told me, that he had once sang in the role of a carnivorous plant… now I see 😀
Windsprite recently posted…Tough Travels -Unique Flora
Ah, so that’s where the Feed me Seymore quote comes from. Cool list! Nice to see The Mirror Empire making the rounds this week.
Rabindranauth recently posted…Doomsday Book by Connie Willis
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