Tough Traveling – Beginnings

Tough Traveling is back! Nathan over at Fantasy Review Barn is the original mastermind of Tough Traveling. And Laura is reviving it as a monthly feature over at Fantasy Faction. What’s Tough Traveling? Pretty much, on the first of the month where we dig around to come up with examples of that month’s chosen trope in fantasy. We are using Diana Wynne Jones’ The Tough Guide to Fantasyland as our inspiration and guide. There will be link ups available over at Fantasy Faction, so join in and link up. This weeks theme?  BEGINNINGS   The Tough Guide states that you will begin in rather poor circumstances in an unimportant corner of the continent; a kitchen menial, perhaps, or a blacksmith’s apprentice. From there, the Guide advises that ‘you will be contacted by your TOUR MENTOR (normally an elderly male MAGIC USER with much experience) who will tell you what to do, which is almost certainly to discover you are a MISSING HEIR.’   Oh, what an appropriate theme for Tough Traveling 2.0. I have to confess that for my list, I went with the most memorable, powerful or even perplexing beginnings. Something that grabs you quick. I found a good number of these matched that blurb from…

Tough Traveling – Forbidden Love

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?  FORBIDDEN LOVE Even in Fantasyland parents are not always happy with their children’s choice of partners.               Alana and Marko from Saga by Brian K. Vaughan  It’s not just parents that are upset with this particular romance. It’s entire worlds. Alana and Marko are on the run for their lives, all because they are from warring races/planets. They risk everything for their love and their daughter. And they are fierce. You really don’t want to get in their way.   Any Couple or Parent/Child pair from The Just City by Jo Walton The Just City tries to employ any number of tactics…

Tough Traveling – Flying Rides

  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? FLYING RIDES Because honestly? Horses just got boring. (Thanks to author Anne Leonard for the suggestion). I was tempted to include science fiction, because well, spaceships! But, I decided to limit myself to fantasy and see what I could come up with 🙂 But I did include steampunk, which, well might be kind of science fiction. But whatever, here’s my list! Kettral from Emperor’s Blades by Brian Staveley What kind of ride would you give a highly trained team of warriors? A kettral. This huge bird type creature can carry your team, travels fast, and can get to the most inhospitable territories. And added bonus? This thing can…

Tough Traveling – Otherworldly Creatures (Tentacles preferred)

  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?  Otherworldly Creatures (Tentacles preferred) Just for Tiara, this topic explains itself. Creatures not of our world or even our plain of existence, perhaps living in another dimension. Preferably, though not required, with tentacles. Or really anything with tentacles can be considered weird enough to be otherworldly.   I kinda feel like I should be flogged, and probably eight times, for my inability to come up with a single creature with tentacles. Major fail on my part. I right away thought of Kraken, but I haven’t actually read it! 🙂 So, here is my un-preferred, tentacle-less list of Otherworldly creatures 🙂 Well, I take that back. I actually…

Tough Traveling – Orphans

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? ORPHANS No one in Fantasyland amounts to anything if they still have both parents. Rule number one. Thanks to Stephanie for the suggestion (and let us all be surprised together that it isn’t in the Tough Guide). OK, since this is such an easy week I decided to give myself another criteria. I am shunning the boys such as Fitz, Kvothe, Locke and Harry Potter in favor for all the girl orphans out there! They are just as important and just as parentless, so here it goes:   Karen from Karen Memory by Elizabeth Bear  Karen may have grown up as an orphan, but she didn’t let that hold…

Tough Traveling – MOMS

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?  MOMS Everyone has a mother. Including people in fantasyland. Just in time to be slightly early for Mother’s Day.   OK, I’m expanding “Fantasyland” to include “SciFiLand” as well. Because they are all awesome! And while I have a couple of ASoIaF entries, I’ll be good and not include Melisandre. I’m also not including Catelyn Stark, just because I have only have so much time, so I maybe picked my favorites 🙂   Alana from Saga by Brian K. Vaughan  Alana deserves some major Mother’s Day love. On the run, she manages to still be completely bad ass after having her daughter, and her daughter doesn’t disappear into…

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…

Tough Traveling – Musicians/Bards

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?  MUSICIANS/BARDS BARDS often join questing parties and provide entertainment around the campfire. Sometimes their music even holds a little bit of magic. Or a clue to an ancient mystery. Or…   I had a harder time this week than I suspected, but here they are. Some obvious, and hopefully at least one unexpected.   Kvothe from Kingkiller Chronicles by Patrick Rothfuss Seriously, will there be a single list without Kvothe? Do I need to state what an absolutely amazing musician he is? Along with everything else he is super-duper awesome at? He’s Kvothe. He’s amazing-ness is quasi-human/bard form. You know you awesome sauce him.       Seraphina from…

Tough Traveling – Vampires

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? VAMPIRES VAMPIRES are increasingly rare on the TOUR. They have been attracted over tot he Horror Tour by offers of better pay. Where they appear, you will find up to date Vampires wear expensive sunglasses and wish to drain you of energy rather than blood.   1850s Steamboat Vampires from Fevre Dream by George R.R. Martin Such a sense of setting in this one! Complete with a steamboat full of vampires gracing the Mississippi river. Some of these vampires are striving to blend with society, but others, well, they see mortal humans as cattle to sustain.     1950s Plague Victim Vampires from I am Legend by Richard Matheson A plague…

Tough Traveling – Chessmasters

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? CHESSMASTERS A true master knows where all the pieces are at all times. Others may think they have taken control but alas, the master knew their last move before they played it.   Little Finger (aka Petyr Baelish) from A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin His nickname may come from being from being from The Fingers, but it could just have easily have come from having his fingers in everything. But he’s sneaky about it, and I think the other characters underestimate his level of chess mastery.     Varys (aka The Spider) from A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R….