Springfield, MO, United States | Member Since 2010
This is my favorite Fantasy Book by my favorite fantasy writer of my favorite fantasy series.
This is a character driven book. The characters are all interesting. None of the characters are perfect and you love them all the more for it. Life is not fair and boy to these people find that out. If I have a complaint it would be with so much tragedy happening to these people, why can't Hobb give them a break every now and then. It is very similar to the character development in George R.R. Martin's books, only I believe Hobb does an even better job. It is interesting to see how people think of themselves and then how the people around them think about them and the surprise of some of them when they realize that they are not as well liked, hated, loved, etc as they thought. Each character in the book has struggles and you struggle with them. I can easily relate a lot of my struggles with the struggles of these characters. Hobb knows people and how they think.
The magic in this is different from most books, such as living ships. Hobb builds a different fantasy world for you, but there is no confusing time trying to get into the development of the world, you feel at home in it right away. It is exciting right from the start, no long periods of trying to explain the world to you. This is 35 hours long and there is not one wasted minute. (Read some of my other reviews and you will see I never go on about any authors like I do Hobb.)
I read the hard cover of this years ago and I am so glad audible came out with it. Some people claim they hate the narrator. I will admit that she has a different style, but I believe she is perfect for this book. I enjoyed this almost as much the second time around as I did the first. The only reason I didn't is that I already knew the surprises and the book is full of them. This is my favorite series of Hobb's and then is the Forrest Mage series and then the Farseer trilogy. Did not care much for the first book in the Tawny Man series and hope it comes out in audio, so I can listen to it. I have one book left in the Dragon Series, but the first two books were real good, so I am looking forward to listening to that soon.
I SWEAR PARENTS CAN BE SUCH CHILDREN
NS is a unique writer, with a writing style that keeps your attention and he dreams up some of the strangest situations. This is a young adult novel without doubt. I thought that was all it was until chapter 23. If you are listening and losing interest you might want to skip to 23. I would have liked the novel to have been more in the Fantasy realm, but is more about the children and life as a teen. I have not been a teen in a while, so I was a little bored with those parts, yet they were written very well.
I also had trouble with the premise that all parents have boyfriends and girlfriends on the side. This may happen, but I really don't think it is the norm, nor do I think that once a parent gets caught that the affair continues and the marriage continues at the same time. Without giving the plot away, I will mention that there is a part of the story that is similar to taking performance enhancing drugs. The emphasis is on the person taking the drugs, there is no talk about the harm done to the player who works hard, trains hard, does his best, but is cheated out of the prize by the cheater.
This is a four star story and a five star performance. The narrators improve the story.
HAPPILY EVERY AFTER IS ALWAYS A CURSE.
Soliloquy On Ducks?
There are some really good stories included in this collection and some really bad stories in my opinion. Having read some of the other reviews, this is a very subjective thing. Some of the stories I thought were horrible, others loved. This is an original anthology, which are never as good as a best of anthology. Don't get me wrong Dozois is the best editor out there and he is a great writer. My theory is when an editor does a original themed collection, then he contracts with writers and gives them the rules. He is not going to insult a popular writer by turning done his story, so he is stuck with whatever he gets. In a best of he choses among stories already written and published. There is one writer included who seems to get in all of these original collections, whose stories are always painful to listen to. I will not mention this writer by name as the last time I did someone, went into my history of reviews and sabotaged me. If you get the collection and you hear a story that includes a soliloquy on ducks in the middle of it, you will know who I am talking about.
One of the best things about anthologies his hearing from authors you have never heard of before. My favorite story was by Mary Robinette Kowal, who I have never heard of before. Her story "The Lady Astronaut of Mars" is a very touching story and is very believable. It touches on some very true subject matters that astronauts may be dealing with in the future. Allen Steele, Tad Williams and Mike Resnick write some very funny stories and these three stories are worth the price of the anthology.
ALMOST BLONDE ANNIE
The Big Whale by Steele is very funny and should by enjoyed by all, but will be especially enjoyable if you have read Moby Dick. HIS MISTAKE WAS, HE BROUGHT A GUN TO A HARPOON FIGHT.
Tad Williams does a rewrite of Genesis, involving God's daughter. Thanks to her trees are upside down, fish swim in the sea and not the ground, etc...
Mike Resnick has some huge LOL moments in his Noir story. In this story the names of the characters are hilarious by themselves. You will meet Almost Blonde Annie, Snake Hips Levine, Loose Lips Sally, Bodacious Belinda. and Bedroom Eyes Bernice just to name a few.
Robert Charles Wilson's story Fireborn is included in Dozois 30th Best of the Year Collection.
Most of the narrators are good, there were a couple I did not care for, but as a whole they were good.
GUNS ARE FOR LOSERS
DUDE, YOU READ WAY TO MANY ROMANCE NOVELS
Angel does care about her loserness and she is trying hard to become a better person or Zombie. As another reviewer has said, it is her self deprecating down to earth personality that draws you in. If you don't fall in love with this flat chested, barely 100 pound Zombie, then you need to go to surgery and have a heart put in your chest. OH SH#T, SORRY. Angel is also one tough lady, don't expect her to lay down and give up. I would like to see Rowland and Maberry do a book together, Angel just might kick Joe Ledger's butt. CARGO PANTS AND A MID DRIFT THAT SAYS REDNECK PRINCESS, ANGEL'S SIGNATURE LOOK.
JESUS, F##KING CHRIST, IT WAS A ZOMBIE SOAP OPERA.
This is book two and like most series that depend upon originality, the newness has warn off a little. This is not as good as book one and the plot is a little thin, but it is a good book, cause of Angel Crawford. I am hoping that the plot is better in the next two books, cause I know I will be listening. YOU NEED TO ACCEPT I'M RIGHT A LOT QUICKER IN THE FUTURE.
UNIVERSITY HELL, I JUST WANTED TO KEEP FROM GOING BACK TO JAIL.
Another reason, I like the book is its intelligent look at what we in America call White Trash. It is commonly accepted that this group of people are unintelligent and beneath the rest of society. This gives us a group of people we look down on, thus making us feel better, with out being called a racist. It is my feeling, just like any other group that is isolated, White Trash is a whole different society. I society that was formed by a group of people who fell between the cracks, who did not have the connections others had and who mostly lost hope in making it in the corporate world. In America, it is often not what you know, but who you know. I have had three main jobs in my adult life and I got my foot in the door at all three places, because I knew someone. I am middle class, I grew up middle class and my friends are middle class, it is what I know.
The narrator is excellent and makes the book better to listen to then to read.
WHEN YOU GOING TO PUT SOME MEAT ON YOUR BONES?
WHEN YOU MAKE ME A SANDWICH, B**CH.
It is extremely rare that I give a five star rating to an anthology. It usually only takes one bad story to bring the review of the collection down. Matter of fact I believe this is a first for me. Card explains that Fables are hard to write. That may be so, but I believe Card is at his best writing Fables and Fantasies. There is not one story in this collection I would give less then four stars. These were written in the late 70's and early 80's when Card was at the top of his game. They are also short stories, so he is not allowed to waste words. Although I will admit there are two stories that did meander a little and went a tad to long, still good stories though.
This is the third book in the huge book, Maps in A Mirror. They can be read in any order, I have read the first two and will go on to read the rest. If you are a fan of the Alvin series you may want to start here. The first two were good and have some great stories. If you are a fan of Ender's Game or any of Card's other works, but have not read his short stories, then you are missing out.
The narration is perfect and made listening better then reading.
IF YOU GO TO AMBUSH SOMEONE DON'T MAKE A SPEECH FIRST.
Keep in mind that as I criticize this book that I have already given it four stars for story and overall. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME SOMEONE FALLING IN LOVE LISTENED TO REASON. This is book number three and it is not as good as book number two, which was no where near as good as book number one "Patient Zero". Though this is not a comic book it does come dangerously close. The bad guys are Chaos (the same bad guys in Get Smart). At over 16 hours I thought the book was too long. The same thing that happens to most popular authors, seems to be happening to Maberry. His writing is getting longer as he says less. Editors keep their mouths shut, so as not to get fired. This would have been a little better at ten or twelve hours. There are places that go extremely flat and even Ray Porter sounds bored.
UGLY WINDS BLEW ACROSS THE DARKNESS OF MY INNER LANDSCAPE.
Keep in mind the above sentence was said in total seriousness. Joe Ledger is becoming a real softy. He is even more touchie feelie and introspective in this book then number 2. Diane Rowland's Zombie character Angel has a bigger set of balls then Joe now. Don't get me started on how Maberry is trying to turn this into a super politically correct novel. The speeches on how there are lots of good Moslems etc... are endless. The series has been optioned for a TV series, so Joe has to clean up his act. The mileage they get out of Joe's girlfriend's death in book two is unbelievable, even while they set up his next girlfriend.
WHAT IS EVIL?
IT IS WHAT THE LOSERS CALL THE WINNERS.
Having said all I have said this book is worth your credit. It is still better then most books out there. It has some good action and plenty of great macho lines. I enjoyed it and will be getting the next book in the series.
Ray Porter, may be the best narrator on the planet.
THE ONLY THING THAT FITS IN A PIGEON HOLE IS A PIGEON.
It is a great story, maybe a little Pollyanna for some. I am a sucker for misfit children happy ending stories. This book flew by, warmed my heart and was just plain fun to listen to.
I did not realize it when I listened, but do see now how the author glorified himself. This is to be expected when written in first person, plus it is an author. To be a writer, you have to believe you have something so important to say that people will pay money to hear you say it. I also thought that for most of the book things went a little too smoothly. I know several parents who have adopted and there are always problems, especially with special needs children or trouble children. I was also not crazy about the direction the story went when the parent started questioning the Martian child part of the story. It is still a really good book, and I will be checking out Gerrold's Science Fiction Books now.
Brick did an excellent job.
Boy meets girl, boy is impressed with girl's large breasts, girl and boy along with girl's father and his girlfriend fly to Las Vegas to get married, the same night they first meet. Next morning girl and girl's step mother decide to parade around the house topless. Girl admits to step mother that she would have slept with her dad if he wanted, she loved him so, what was the problem. Step mother admits to admiring step daughter's husband.
Do I need to continue, cause there is more?
Forster predicts facebook in 1909. Only this is more high brow, discussing music, literature, etc. People live underground and only communicate through this sort of face book. They sit and sit and sit and discuss and discuss. Hey, I know some people like that!
Yet, it would not be a story without a rebel.
Action packed lovers may be bored with this, while deep thinkers may love it. This was considered the top Science Fiction Story by some until 1965.
Guess, I am half action seeker and half deep thinker.
I had never heard of this author or this book, but when offered as an audible daily deal, it sounded interesting. It was a warm story with lots of surprises. Having it written in first person, by the boy with Asperger's Syndrome made the book that more personable. I am always interested in books that show thinking in a different way and this was different. It was interesting at all times, sometimes I laughed, sometimes I cried and sometimes I was scared.
If you are a fan of Temple G. you should like this. It also reminded me of the Curious George books, only much more adult.
ALL THE FACTS YOU TAKE FOR GRANTED CAN BE COMPLETELY WRONG SOMETIMES.
WHAT WAS YOUR SIN?
Actually I have several. Niven and Pournelle used this as a way to complain about modern problems. They hit everyone in New Orleans pretty hard. At first I thought too much so, and then the night I finished the book, the news had a story on the New Orleans Mayor, who had just been convicted of bribery and taking money on construction projects. They hammered hard on scientist that gave false evidence. They mentioned scientists in the 1970's who warned us about a coming Ice Age. They hinted that today's Global Warming Scientist might be scamming us. The talked about DDT and how it should have never been banned and the lives it cost to ban it. They talked about Silicon Breast Implants and how it was never proved they caused any harm. Lawyers got hit hard, etc...
Even though I agreed with a lot they had to say, the book had no plot as of course neither did Daunte's book. I would think two smart writers could visit Hell and have a plot. No character development here, today's readers need more.
I KNOW THE WAY OUT OF HELL
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