Ryan North

От "Огнена пустиня" до "Пустинен огън"; от Blood Sword до Lone Wolf; от "Асасините на Персия" до... а да видим докъде. :D

Ryan North

Postby Кал » Sat Dec 06, 2014 2:28 pm

Отзив в Goodreads за To Be or not to Be:

1. Upon discovering this review, you are offered your first choice.

Would you rather be reading this:

Witness this army of such mass and charge
Led by a delicate and tender prince,
Whose spirit with divine ambition puff’d
Makes mouths at the invisible event,
Exposing what is mortal and unsure
To all that fortune, death, and danger dare,
Even for an egg-shell. Rightly to be great
Is not to stir without great argument,
But greatly to find quarrel in a straw
When honour’s at the stake. How stand I then,
That have a father kill’d, a mother stain’d,
Excitements of my reason and my blood,
And let all sleep? while, to my shame, I see
The imminent death of twenty thousand men,
That, for a fantasy and trick of fame,
Go to their graves like beds, fight for a plot
Whereon the numbers cannot try the cause,
Which is not tomb enough and continent
To hide the slain? O, from this time forth,
My thoughts be bloody, or be nothing worth!

> Turn to section 2.

Or this:

My name is Hamlet, yo, you better check this composition:
Just peeped an awesome army boat that of its own volition
Is led by my man Fortinbras (a man of great ambition)
Who lessens me whenever we’re seen in juxtaposition
And who’s taken for himself this chosen military mission
But also lacks my frankly odd particular condition
Of being told just who to kill by ghostly apparition
And being told to kill a man who by his own admission
Has sent my dear departed regal dad to the mortician
Now Fortinbras goes off to war and just to requisition
Land so sad and barren that any given tactician
Would think him crazy; well, you see that this new proposition
Suggests to me quite clearly my apparent opposition
To this Revenge Your Dad and Kill Your New Dad expedition
When I have motives valid, beyond any inquisition
Is weak and dumb, so I’ve got to end this predisposition
Towards inaction that I have; my stupid inhibition
Must be gotten over fast cuz I got to reposition
Myself to kill my new dad right away. And in addition,
And though I know this carries no small risk of repetition
And saying this out loud will only add to your suspicion
From now on the only things that I will bring into fruition
Are the bloody gory parts of my own personal cognition
That is to say: only thoughts regarding the commission
Of the brutal death of Claudius. No more exposition!

> Turn to section 3.


2. Suit yourself.



3. You have come to the right book. Rad!

Who* do you want to know more about?

Hamlet > turn to section 4.

Hamlet, Senior > turn to section 5.

Ophelia > turn to section 6.

The reviewer > turn to section 7.

* If you had chosen section 2 and if this** had been it***, this**** would have read "Whom".
** section 3
*** section 2
**** "Who"


4. An emo kid, fresh out of uni. With too much on his mind, including killing sprees. Totally not a decision maker. Woe unto Denmark should he assume the crown.

Odds increase exponentially if played as Ophelia's sidekick.

Kissing skills: Passable. But first make sure he hasn't cannibalized anybody recently. Also, beware morning breath.

> Turn to section 8.


5. A dead end. (Ha ha ha.)

Kissing skills: Dunno. Have you tried him?

> Turn to section 8.


6. The protagonist. (In case you wondered why she--the woman--was listed after them--the men: it was a gradation, a bottom-up ranking in Awesome, that's why.)

Ophelia is level-headed, scientifically-savvy (is that a word?), a quick study with the sword. (And, okay, a bit slow with chess.) She is bound for a glorious future, with or without a sidekick.

Kissing skills: You know what...this is PREPOSTEROUS. Next thing, you'll be asking me, "But is she pretty?" Stop reading this review RIGHT away. Get out of here. Do not come back until you've learned to treat women as proper human beings. Quit objectifying them. You're an insult to both mankind and humankind. GO!

... You're back? Wow, that was fast.

> Turn to section 8.


7. What do you wanna know?

> Turn to this page.

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"But...but...I only wished to ask about his kissing skills ...."

Shush! *blush* Pray that my partner doesn't read this ....


8. Shall I tell you about the book?

"Yes please" > turn to section 9.

"No, I'm off to read it myself" > turn to section 10.


9. To Be or Not To Be is a long-overdue update of a certain classical play. This new, definitive edition reveals the plot for what it is: a schizophrenic, misogynist splatterfest. (Incidentally, things literally splatter in seven of the endings--and counting.) After spending half of my conscious life recovering from the trauma of perusing the original (and dissecting it in high school ... ewwwwwww), I'm finally as good as new. To Be or Not To Be has proved to be the best antipsychotic, tranquilizer and emetic that human progress has attained. All in your face, Author Number Two!

Additionally, this version is much radder than the old one because it lets you choose what happens. For instance, you get to pick from a dozen different deaths once you have wrongly murderized Polonius. ("Wrongly" refers to timing only; as we all know, Polonius MUST die. Stabbing creeps listening in on you is totally the right thing to do.)

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There's also an optional side quest, which totally reads like some, I don't know, interactive fiction? Awesome.

I'm putting this inside a spoiler because ... I don't know? It's not like I didn't spoil it already, two paragraphs and two sentences back. BTW, before you go and check, let's let you in on a trick of the trade: this is a nifty way to make you spend more time reading my review, thereby raising the odds of it sticking in your mind, thereby raising the odds of you giving it a "like." Yay me!

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! Can't wait to try it" > turn to section 10.

... Still around? Looking for more? Okay, I'll let you in on another secret. But this one is a SUPER spoiler. You have been warned.

... Still around? Here goes:

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Do not. Lie. To this book.



10. Good for you. I mean, turborad!!


P.S. Ryan North, thank you so much for helping me let off some steam writing this bit of silliness. You get an extra star, just for that. <3

P.P.S. A note to my future biographers: This is the first time I've used the <3 emoticon in public. My manly pride put up quite a fight--but I was manlier.
Last edited by Кал on Sun Nov 19, 2017 10:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ryan North

Postby Кал » Sun Nov 19, 2017 12:36 pm

Отзив в Goodreads за Romeo and/or Juliet:

Another send-up in the spirit of To Be or Not To Be (though Juliet is much less rad than Ophelia). Captures a few subtle logical deficiencies in the original. Like:

“What?” Romeo says.
“I just met you, dude!” you say. “Yesterday. At, like, midnight. I’ve known you for less than twenty-four hours.”
“But I love you! This is romance! I love you and I love romance!” Romeo says, a little frantically.
“I like you too, Romeo, but I can’t marry you today. So, um . . . sorry?” you say.
“You were going to marry me a second ago,” he says.
“Changed my mind,” you say, and kiss him on the cheek. “If you love me this won’t be a huge deal, okay? Come on man, it’s not like I’m running out on a wedding we’ve been planning for months. I’m running out on a wedding you got my nurse to invite me to a few hours ago.”
“IT IS A HUGE DEAL!” Romeo shouts. He jumps down into the audience area and kicks over a chair. “I was gonna get married!!”
“Romeo, buddy, calm down,” you say.
“YOU calm down!” he says. “You—you can’t say you’ll marry someone and then not marry them!”
“So we should get married out of—what, inertia? OBLIGATION?” you say.
“YES!” Romeo shouts.
“Look, you’re obviously not yourself, and I didn’t think you’d get this upset,” you say. “I’m sorry, but I’m going home. We can talk about this later.”
You leave Romeo there. When you get home you explain what happened to Angelica, who honestly kinda seems more upset about it than you are.
The next morning, the word “HARLOT” is mysteriously painted on your castle’s exterior walls. The day after that, “JULIET IS A” is added above it. The day after that “LET ME BE CLEAR, WHEN I SAID” is added before it, and “I ACTUALLY MEANT THAT SHE NEEDS TO BE MORE OF ONE. SHE’S NOT ENOUGH OF A HARLOT RIGHT NOW AND I WOULD PREFER IF SHE WERE HARLOT-ER. SIGNED, ROMEO.”
The day after that your dad gets the walls cleaned. He also pays a bunch of people to go over to Romeo’s house and beat him up.
“OKAY GEEZ SORRY” is painted on your walls the next day. And you never hear from Romeo again.
Later on, in college, you’re at a party and the conversation gets to old relationships. For the first time you decide to break out the story of Juliet and Her Romeo: AKA, That One Time I Was Engaged for Almost a Whole Day.
Your friends start giggling as you tell the story, and before long you’re giggling too. Everything that happened felt so important when it was going on, but now that you’ve got some distance, it really does sound like a joke. Romeo left your party to hide in the bushes outside your house? He proposed to you through your NURSE? He tried to get his friends to bring over a SEX LADDER?
Your friends are laughing, and you’re laughing too, and before long you’re laughing so hard you’re struggling to breathe. You’re laughing the way people who were drowning but somehow made it back to shore laugh as they lie faceup on the beach, the blinding sun in their eyes, their muscles exhausted and screaming.
That is to say, thankfully.

(One of a many, of course.)

It's also educational in the extreme:

We talk about sex and you learn a heck of a lot! You can’t believe not only what you didn’t know, but what you didn’t know you didn’t know. You’re really glad we had this talk. You know what? I am too!
“Wait,” you say as we’re wrapping up, “I have a question. What does it mean when a—”
You pause, embarrassed, but I figure out what you’re asking and then answer it to everyone’s satisfaction.
“And how do you—” you say. “I mean, if someone wanted to, how could they—” and again I figure out your question and answer it really, really well.
You’ve learned so much!!

And full of freedom:

You see Romeo’s hand grab the top of your balcony, and in a panic, you dive under your covers to hide. You peek out a few seconds later and see Romeo there, entering your room.
“Hey there, beautiful,” he says.
“Hey yourself, handsome,” you say. “You’re a little late, so I went to bed. It’s pretty cold under here.” You pull back the covers a little. “I could use some company.”
Juliet, Romeo has been INSTA-SEDUCED. Dang! You pulled it off!
And yes, this is it, gentle reader. This is the moment you’ve been waiting for. Here is the only reason you picked up this book in the first place, because you knew this scene had to be in here somewhere, if only you just somehow made the right choices to find it.
Welcome . . . to the CHOOSE-YOUR-OWN SEX SCENE.

>>> Choose-your-own sex scene!! I CAN’T WAIT.<<<

Haha what? No that’s . . . that’s fine. Skip over to when the sex is done, please.

Subtle HINT: pick the FIRST option. Then you get:

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Alright! To get started, go to your bookshelf (or, if this is the only book you own, to your local library or bookstore. Also, if this is the only book you own: hey, thanks! I’m flattered) and pick up any other book with a sex scene in it. Then, while reading that sex scene, mentally substitute in the correct names, genders, body parts, interests, fluids, and catchphrases for yourself and your partner!
Enjoy! And remember: it’s YOUR CHOICE. You can choose any other sex scene in the entire universe! My gift to you, reader. Go crazy. Have as many or as few sex scenes as you want.
When you’re done, we’ll continue! But no rush. Take as much time as you need. I don’t judge!
I’ll just be standing here with my back turned until you’re ready.

Finally, it finally settles the question of why God would let bad things happen to good peepz:

You turn the combined mental effort of every being on the planet towards this task. Never in history have so many minds worked towards a single purpose, all striving with their entire being towards it. And thousands of years later, you do it. Objects in motion don’t tend to stay in motion unless you will them to. Apples don’t fall from trees unless you decide that, yes, gravity is also going to affect them in this picosecond too. An entire cosmos of choices flows through you: nothing happens without your explicit consent. You are the totality of being. You are better than a mere god. You have become The Chooser.
Naturally, this insane level of micromanagement takes up all your time, so you decide to let life go back to making its own decisions. You’re much too busy making sure each proton in everyone’s bodies doesn’t decide to decay into pions and positrons at the same time for absolutely no reason. The universe comes of age, and the life inside it begins to wonder what sort of god would rule over a universe where bad things happen to good people, and you’re all, “Wow oh geez sorry your THIRD DOG died at age SIXTEEN which is ONE HUNDRED AND TWELVE IN FRIGGIN’ DOG YEARS, I guess I was too busy making sure EVERY SUN DIDN’T EXPLODE AT THE SAME TIME, THANKS FOR NOTICING HOW THAT DIDN’T HAPPEN BY THE WAY??”

What follows below is a reaaaally spoiling spoiler. You have been warned.

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There's an unlockable character with a postscript/postmortem route. Her voice is on another level entirely. Kudos to Ryan North; if he ever decides to write noir, I'm on.
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