earthsea mini review

jan 04 2022

I was introduced to Le Guin through The Left Hand of Darkness which I loved. It was probably my favorite book I read in 2021. I heard she wrote some fantasy too, but I was hesitant to get into it since it seemed like it was meant for a younger audience. I was reading about how Le Guin basically invented the "wizard school" genre but has been overshadowed by Harry Potter and J.K Rowling, and I was interested enough to give the series a try. I picked it up in a Barnes and Noble since I had a gift card and ended up actually really really enjoying it! It definitely was for a slightly younger age group (14-16 probably) but it felt fairly mature and more complex than something like the first Harry Potter book and I enjoyed it. Le Guin is just such a master of painting deep characters and settings with only a few pages. This world feels so lived in and populated and the friendships between the characters felt realistic. I've always loved that Le Guin tries to build complex antagonists and conflicts into her story instead of just having simple "good vs evil" or war heavy plots where the conflict is solved just by killing a bad guy. I won't say too much because of spoilers but I really like the ending and the thematic implications. I feel like I would've been really into this series as a kid but I still really liked it and I've already ordered the other books in the series!