I just finished listening to Wonder having previously listened to Wake and Watch. I thoroughly enjoyed each book. These books are not only good story-telling, but the best audio productions I have ever heard. The readers were perfect for each part they played and totally believable. Jessica Almasy in particular nailed the part of Caitlin. Thank you to everyone involved!
Mom, married, website designer, portfolio manager in self-imposed exile (yeah Greg Smith!!), former California native, Episcopalian.
The third book, WWW:Wonder, didn't grab my interest as thoroughly and quickly as the first two books. Even so, it was still a fun book with great twists. By the time I was half-way through, I was listening as often as I could manage. I enjoyed the characters, the narrators, the plot, all well done. I hope the publisher comes out with a set so I can give it as a gift. The entire series was well worth the read.
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Sawyer has not disappointed me yet!... And if all his novels are like this, I doubt he could!
I’m sure that mine is the most boring positive review written for this book, but I don’t have much else to say other than: Loved it!
Although it’s a Sci-Fi story, I think it can easily appeal to a wider audience because the premise of Artificial Intelligence is just this side of credible, and Sawyer had a great knack for making people think. I felt exactly the same way after reading the Neanderthal Parallax Trilogy. In both cases, I would recommend that you read all 3 books back to back to back in order to really sink into the story properly.
This review really doesn’t tell you much about the plot, I know, but you can read the publisher’s summary for that. If you were debating whether or not to read the trilogy, hopefully I can influence you to do so - I’d be surprised if you were disappointed!
Ooops - I wrote this for another book...but to paraphrase: It was nice to listen to a book that didn't make technology into the devil. A good and easy book to listen to while driving.
Avid audiobook addict!
There's absolutely no subtlety at all in this book. The dialogue is a study in how people NEVER talk to one another. It could have been way shorter, but the author puts in all sorts of mundane and unimportant details (like what the characters are having for breakfast). The premise IS interesting though, and the narrators are good--using several different people to narrate is much better than having one person fake a bunch of gender/accents.
With a strong feeling of relief I feel the author barely pulled this story out of it's death spiral that started in the 2nd book. Fortunately, though still present, he tuned down the gay rights, anti God rhetoric that he seemed he couldn't stop spouting in the 2nd book, and concentrated on the story. I almost barfed with the irritating 16 year old girl OMG lines. But his going back to the development of Webmind ended up saving the story, and so I'm satisfied. That being said, it's such a shame that he started out with such a good story in book 1 and in the end failed to carry that story all the way to the end. I really feel that this story could have become a classic in scifi. I feel he ultimately failed because of the PREACHY attitude he took promoting atheism, gay rights, and pro teenage sex to the detriment of the story. None of the wanderings into these topics had anything to do with the story or of the development of web mind. "Come on", if you're going to include these things, at least show how it helped in the development of your characters. He says he spent six years on this trilogy, I'm sorry to say Mr. Sawyer it was 6 years wasted. To finish off I'd like to say that the one good thing in this book is that it did end cleanly with no major questions unanswered and no wish for it to continue.
This book is aimed at someone with low technical knowledge. It is full of technical errors starting in the preface with a misunderstanding of Moore's law up to fundamental flaws that spoil the story. The writer simply doesn't do his research. The plot itself has more holes than plot; I'll avoid the big things which would involve spoilers, but even when the hackers go missing, their leave their families thinking they're dead just because nobody thinks to tell them they got jobs for webmind. It's full of examples where if you think about what's going on it drives you nuts.
The author is also more concerned about pushing his own political agenda, and many times sacrifices the story to score a political point. This also causes many flaws in the plot.
No, I knew up front Sawyer is a horrible writer, but this was bad even for him.
The narrators were perfectly cast and did an excellent job. In that respect it's actually one of the best on Audible and the performance quality is the main reason I bought the book since I expect very little of Sawyer. The only criticism is the pronunciation of
The China story line. It's just about the author spouting political babble and only weakens the rest of the story.
It's a very insightful story with some great ideas. In the hands of a competent author it could have been one of the great genre-transcending works of the 21st century. With the high quality of the narrators it could have been an excellent audio book too. As it is, it falls flat in the hands of an a lousy writer.
first the praise: I enjoyed the series. An interesting imaginary tale. Good writing, good characters, different social political ideas.
This critical part does not change my mind about how I enjoyed the series but does warrant commenting
First, Robert Sawyer always says you can read his series books as a stand alone novel. This is not at all the case with this series, especially this 3rd book. I actually prefer to not have a full recap of the previous books in the series, so for me it was better to have it not be continuously recapped.
Second, the sociopolitical message that Robert Sawyer makes obvious in his books is an interesting take on life. I do not agree with him on many things but I am not insulted by ideas. Since I form my own ideas and opinions he is free to write books stating his world view and I can buy and read or not. It is entertaining but if you are easily offended then I would advise that you spend your credits elsewhere.
Views of AI in society.
The end of the book, I definitely didn't expect it. I won't spoil it though ;)
Will an emergent artificial intelligence convince humankind that is here for the good of humanity?
I view this book as slightly weaker than the other two due to the fact that it explores the inner workings of the characters the least. To say it another way, the characters came alive in the previous two books but acted as expected in this book with few if any surprises. However, it did wrap the series up quite nicely and would recommend this book to anyone who has read the other two.