What the crap, Kirkus Reviews!? How is this boring book one of the top sci-fi reads of 2013? Ugh. It's probably one of the slowest books I've read in a while, which wouldn't be so bad if something interesting actually happened. But no, we get this bland story about some runaway working for werewolves and vampires except they aren't called werewolves and vampires. And it's all just a mundane account of her daily comings and goings with a crumb of interesting information thrown in occasionally. I don't care about wolf pups going outside to pee, or wolf cookies, or pony treats, or werewolf businesses, or package deliveries. All of these things were talked about ad nauseum. Pretty much nothing else happens, and in the rare instances that it does get interesting I'm suddenly hearing about pony treats or some other non-interesting topic again.
And the (possible) love interest is a disgusting sack of garbage who mistreats everyone around him, especially women of all species.
The feeling I get when listening to this book is it must have been written by an alien being who doesn't understand human interactions or the way humans think and act , and finds the inane details of package delivery services to be utterly fascinating.
The narrator is also pretty boring as she doesn't have the range of voices needed to perform this book, not that it matters because the material she was given to work with is pretty dang awful.
3.75 stars. I can't give it 4 stars because most parts were fairly predictable, but nonetheless it was a very enjoyable YA fantasy novel if you're looking for a story that keeps moving and is a fun, easy read. Can't wait to read the rest of the series and more books by this author.
Yes but it would depend on the friend. This book has a very different, yet, interesting story line. I was pleasantly surprised.
I liked the characters. It was different and suspenseful. The take on shifters and things are different. It is an alternate lifetime/universe thing. Like, not really the United States... it's different. That's all I can say.
I can see people either loving or hating this book. But I felt very pleasantly surprised and will be glad to see what happens next.
The book? Yes. The audiobook? No. The story's neat, but the narrator is so obviously reading. Everything - and I mean everything - has the same pace. No wonder the book clocks in at 18+ hours! I'm sure a more active narrator would have done it in much less.
Almost anyone else. Don't get me wrong - her voice isn't annoying, and her character voices are decent, but her pacing leaves a lot to be desired. Everything is read at the same pace, with the same overly careful narration. I should feel excited during a fight scene, not wonder why the narrator is bored!
I'm a fan of the urban fantasy/paranormal genre but I have to admit to becoming a bit jaded by the formulaic storyline most books seem to follow. I was pleasantly surprised that Written in Red broke that mold, offering sympathetic characters who did not hop into bed for wild wolfie sex after the second chapter. Nothing against wild wolfie sex, but it's nice to be able to read a UF/P novel with an emphasis on the story and characters.
Simon, definitely. He had the perfect combination of growly and vulnerable without being all angsty and teenager-ish. He's definitely NOT your Twilight-style creature of the night.
The reader's inflection and personification is almost perfect. She does a great job with the character voices, especially with the "growly" note in Simon's voice, and doesn't resort to strained-sounding baritones or falsettos to try to differentiate between characters.
Parts of the book were funny and parts were sad, but neither was so extreme as to detract from the overall story.
I have heard nothing, but wonderful things about Bishop's Others series so I was excited to try it. That being said, it is always a little nerve-wracking to start something that comes so highly recommended. But, thankfully, my expectations were met within the first few chapters of Written in Red and I found myself on quite a ride.
The protagonist of this series is Meg Corbyn, a cassandra sangue or blood prophet, who receives visions whenever her skin is cut. Written in Red begins with Meg having escaped from a mysterious persona known to her as the Controller who gained wealth and prominence through the hiring out of cassandra sangues. Meg spends much of this book trying to forge a new life for herself in the unique setting of the Lakeside Courtyard, a section of town that is inhabited by powerful, dangerous creatures known as the Others.
I found Meg to be quite a different type of urban fantasy heroine. She is not fiesty or street-smart or super-powered, but she has a certain something that I connected with. She is naive, but not stupid and is willing to do anything to gain her independence. Because of her lifelong captivity, this is Meg's first opportunity to experience things she only ever read about or saw on screen like music, driving, or even snow. I found myself very interested in her journey because she is a gentle soul with a spine and I think that is very refreshing in this genre.
The inhabitants of the Lakeside Courtyard are the terra indigene (The Others) which are a group of species that have lived on the Earth since the beginning and often view humans as prey. There are a lot of different terra indigene such as animal shifters, Sanguinati or vampires, and Elementals. I have read many series that have a mix of supernatural creatures like this, but Anne Bishop's creativity really shines in her depiction of these species. The Others are the dominant forces in this version of Earth and they allow humans to live among them because they enjoy the advances they bring. These groups are violent and completely willing to rid the planet of humans if they feel like it and I enjoyed that suspenseful aspect of their characterization.
When Meg arrives at the Lakeside Courtyard, she is given the job of Liaison for the Others which has the important task of dealing with human delivery workers and insuring packages/mail are delivered in a timely manner. This allows her to interact with a ton of the Courtyard's inhabitants who make up quite a large and diverse cast. My personal favorites were Simon Wolfgard (the unofficial head of the Courtyard who hires and trains Meg), Sam (Simon's emotionally damaged nephew), Tess (the mystery woman with the ever-changing hair color that everyone else fears), and Vlad (the helpful Sanguinati). I also have to mention the ponies that help Meg deliver the mail who have interesting powers of their own.
Written in Red does not have a romance, but there are definitely some hints of it especially in the second half. Ms. Bishop spends most of her time developing the world and introducing readers to the characters. The interaction between Simon and Meg is the one that I think has the most potential though this book primarily has them getting to know each other and developing a semi-friendly relationship. But, I am excited to see if things progress between these two later in the series.
As an introduction to a series, I thought Written in Red was very successful. I will warn potential readers that it does take some time to get used to the vocabulary of the series and figure out the different terra indigene species. This world is very different from ours and the rules are not as clear cut. Once everything is set up, I feel like the story really took off and never let off the gas. The second half, in particular, was full of action and suspense. I just couldn't stop listening especially when it hit the climax which is one of the most violent I've read in awhile.
This was my first opportunity to listen to one of Alexandra Harris's narrations, but I came away very impressed. She has a gentle and easygoing voice that is especially suited for the times when she is narrating Meg's sections. There were tons of characters that she had to voice and I think she did a good job with all of them even the gruff Simon and the smooth Vlad.
I know this review was pretty long and had some rambling moments, but it was such an amazing treat to listen to that I wanted to showcase what I loved. Written in Red was so unique in this genre and I think Anne Bishop has a real winner on her hands. I can't wait to see where she takes the story next and suggest anyone who likes dark, complex urban fantasy give it a try whether in print or audio.
One of the best. Great characters, thoughtful development, heart and HUGE originality.
It's so anticlimactic, but I loved it when she came over to watch a move. You'll have to see why. It is just so unexpectedly domestic and sweet!
I thought she did a great job--not overly sweet. Timing was outstanding.
The emergency room.
I'm an over 50 reader. A good story, though, is a good story, regardless of the genre.
It's up there I love SCI and Paranormal so I liked this. This was good enough that before I finished this book I had already purchased the next.
When Sam came out of wolf form for the first time. Even though you kind of expect him to do this Mrs. Bishop still makes the experience worth listening to.
I don't know if I can say this, but the way that she sounds is comforting
No not extreme I just loved it
Can't wait to hear Murder of Crows
This book ranks in my top 5 books this year.
I really enjoyed this book because of the world that Anne Bishop describes. The "Others" being inclusive of all non-humans. They just like humans are part of the natural order and are dominant, and are not fun lovable creatures. Love it.
I think the narrator did a good job with the voices. She has a different sound to all characters and they weren't annoying.
I totally wanted to listen to this book in one sitting but couldn't because its so long and I didn't want to skip any of it. Sometimes, long books get a little boring so I'll skip, but I didn't want to miss anything in this one and am glad a listed to the whole thing not missing anything.
Not my normal genre , but I found I really really liked it! A story of a young girl who is a blood profit who escapes her bonds to find a home among the others. Very good writing and great narration.