Titus Groan is often mentioned with Lord of the Rings and incorrectly categorized as epic fantasy. This is a gothic drama. The story revolves around a dysfunctional, simple minded, royal family that adheres to archaic traditions. Trouble ensues when an ambitious youth manipulates them in a grab for power. Titus Groan could have been a short story. Weighing in at 400 pages, with 350 pages of deeply poetic detail, you should only read it if you like authors like Charles Dickens. If you're a fan of richly detailed descriptions, you'll probably enjoy this book. In order to help you figure out if you'd appreciate Titus Groan, I've made a simple quiz:
1) Which description do you prefer?
A - Making use of the miniature and fluted precipice of hard, white discoloured flesh, where Fuchsia's teeth had left their parallel grooves, he bit greedily, his top teeth severing the wrinkled skin of the pear, and the teeth of his lower jaw entering the pale cliff about halfway up its face; they met in the secret and dark centre of the fruit - in that abactinal region where, since the petals of the pear flower had been scattered in some far June breeze, a stealthy and profound maturing had progressed by day and night. As he bit, for the second time, into the fruit his weakness filled him again as with a thin atmosphere, and he carefully lowered himself face down over the table until he had recovered strength to continue his clandestine meal. (+50 Points)
B - Steelpike bit into Fuchsia's pear. It was yummy. (0 Points)
2) For every one of these words that you know, give yourself 5 points.
a) perspicaciously (+5 Points)
b) escutcheon (+5 Points)
c) conflagration (+5 Points)
d) seraphic (+5 Points)
e) escarpment (+5 Points)
3) Do you like the style of the characters in Tim Burton movies?
a) Yes, the grotesque personifications are humorous. (+10 Points)
b) No, they look all weird and stuff. (0 Points)
4) Would you like to read about a rotten royal family in a crumbling castle fall to pieces through manipulation?
a) Yes, to hell with kings and monarchs! (+10 Points)
b) No, that sounds kinda lame and depressing. (0 Points)
5) Do you like parodies or dark humor?
a) Yes! (+5 Points)
b) Nope! (0 Points)
Ok, add up your points:_____
See what score is closest to your point total.
100 Points - You should buy the entire trilogy today! Your mind's eye will be filled with vivid images of manipulation, treachery, decay, and parody. You will reread this book again and again!
80 Points - You'll enjoy reading this book and will be deeply entertained.
60 Points - You may have trouble with the book, but you'll probably finish it because the story is entertaining.
40 Points - You should probably skip this book.
25 Points - There's enough drama on TV. There's no reason to read this book.
0 Points - If someone puts a gun to your head and forces you to read this book, take your chances and try to escape!
So, there you have it.