These two books, Black Out and All Clear were excellent! You MUST get both books. It is worth every penny. I feel like I know all the characters. I'm really going to miss them all now that I'm done with both books.
Connie is a great author and Katherine is a terrific narrator.
I had hoped that in this second installment that the main characters would not still be frantically whining about their plight...but they are.
The author could have told this story in one book. I just want her to get to the point. If this was a printed book I would have skipped to the end.
This book is amazing. I felt like I was really in London during WWII. The characters feel like friends I just left. But I have to give credit to the children's characters: every time the story risked becoming too maudlin, it was saved by their outrageous behavior! I would definitely recommend this book to anyone.
I have long been a fan of Connie Willis and so looked forward to "Blackout". The basic plot of time traveling historians trapped in London in WW II during the Blitz had great potential. However it was a major disappointment as the plot progressed at a snail's pace. I didn't realize it was the first of two books so decided the second book, "All Clear", would make up for the agony of reading the first- it didn't (I can't count how many times that was said in these books). I should have been tipped off when in the introduction to the audiobook for "All Clear" the author stated that she loved doing the research more than the writing. I suspect that after all her time researching, to maximize revenue she had to make this a two volume story when the plot would better support a short story! Willis fans, skip these two and hope she does better next time.
All Clear is the second book, you really must read the first book, Blackout, to understand All Clear. Getting through Blackout is a chore. Several times I almost gave up as much of the plot didn't seem to make any sense. Why is the author spending dozens of pages on a measles epidemic at a rural country mansion? There are numerous scenes where I said - "gosh if I wanted to know how shop girls in London in 1941 wrapped packages this is the book for me..."
It wasn't until I got all the way to the second half of All Clear did I figure out what the author was doing. Everything in Blackout and the first half of All Clear is about developing the characters, the context, and the "history" for what happens in the final part of All Clear.
When I got to the last half of All Clear, I finally got it and was very glad I had not stopped listening. Then the book became one that I wanted to listen too at any time. It really got my attention and interest. The ending was terrific.
So have some patience, enjoy the "ride" -- the destination is well worth the long trip.
I liked this book as much as the first part, maybe more. The only part I didn't like in either book is the sometime winnienss of the historians. But overall the book is very good. I really liked the everyday lives i historical WWII.
In spite of being difficult to follow the storyline at times due to the tangle of time travel threads, I loved the character development and view into a fascinating period of recent history. I listened nearly nonstop.
I enjoyed the story line, but became frustrated with the constant repititions of the characters situations and thoughts. It also was hard to follow.
I laughed. I cried. Connie Willis never disappoints. This along with Black Out may even push Doomsday Book down a spot on my list of all time favorites.
i first listened to blackout by connie willis, that was the first book i had read by this author, other than the occasional error (such as the victoria line being used even though it wasnt build until 1967 - i wont hold that against the author though ....) i loved the book from beginning to end.
i wondered how she was going to finsh it, well its here and wow she done a stella job with the book. i was emersed in the story from begining to end, im not going to put any spoliers in but if your a fan your going love this book, its is her best to date.
the story can get confusing because of the nature of the book (timetravel) but the reader katherine kellgren was pretty good and brought the charactors to life - though given the choice i would have loved scott brick to have read this.