When my family latches on to a series we all like, it's a very fun time. We spend a lot of time chatting, emailing, texting and when each and every chapter has been thoroughly exhausted, we start predicting what's going to happen in the next book.
Aragon and Saphira have been part of our family for the last decade. But this last book has left us with very little to talk about. Christopher Paolini seems to have left the excitement and spontaneity behind and chosen a safer, more predictable path.
We are being totally, knowingly, happily taken for a ride. Anthony Ryan has The Talent. He creates questions, histories, personalities and knows how much to reveal and what to leave unanswered. His characters are likeable, easy to relate to and I worry about them when I’m not listening. The world he has created is similar enough to know but different enough to be interesting. Steven Brand is the perfect voice for this story and these characters.
We are addicted. We are being played like a fiddle. We are enjoying every minute of it.
We gave Fall of Giants very high marks and looked forward to #2. But this one fell flat for us. Too many characters involved in old-fashioned soap opera drama, drama, drama. Gave up on keeping names straight and the historical situations and just got through it.
The combination of story and narration make this more an experience than just listening to a good book. It is so good to learn about Native American culture from a Native American. Mr. Marshall presents the life and times of Crazy Horse in factual detail - the good, bad and ugly. History is what it is. We can only learn from it and this book gives us a wonderful opportunity to do just that.
"The Dinosaur Hunter" is simply a sit-back-and-entertain-me, awesome story with the perfect narrator for the part. We are big Homer Hickam fans, and this is one of his best.
This was a first listen for us with narrator, Paul Blake. We're enjoying him very much. He's different from Robert Glenister (narrator of the first two books in this series) but just as good. It is rather annoying when changes are made in a middle of a series. But if, as in this case, the story is worthwhile, (and Conn Iggulden is always terrific) than getting to know a new narrator is part of the fun.
"The Red Thread" is the next selection for my book club. I can't wait for the discussions! The idea of telling the story of the sad prediciment of people in China who give up their baby girls and the Americans who take the heart-rendering journey to adoption is what attracted me to this book and lead me to recommend it to my book club friends.
But for all that, I found the plot shallow, the people shallow and way more sex than was necessary.
The stories of these marriages (the Americans) were depressing and, for the most part, self-inflicted, and I found very few of them ready to be parents.
It was hours of these horrific situtations and sad tales and then The End. They get their babies and, we must assume, that everyone lives happily ever after. As if a baby is the answer to everyone's bad behavior and problems. What a shallow, sad soap opera!
I don't know of any other author that could have done justice to this bit of American history. It has a lot of charaters... and ships... to keep track of and the narrator does a great job helping to keep them sorted out. The story itself is just plain frustrating and leaves the reader wondering how America ever made it past the Revolutionary War. All that said, it was well worth the credit and time. What an interesting and little known part of our history!
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