Absolutely wonderful. Ms. Murphy writes the most amazing, beautiful story of life, death, endings and beginnings. The past and the present the living and the dead become one, in a way that breaks your heart and uplifts your soul. Still my favourite author ever, love her and her writing even more than ever before. Thank you, 's Murphy, for a beautiful, uplifting story.
First off, I want my credit back. Apparently, Harris has said that she wrote this book as an insult to all the people who have been loyal to her over the last 10 years and made her a very rich woman at the same time. I believe it. No matter what you call it, manure is manure. The worst thing is, I can't take this manure out to the compost pile and make something useful of it because it is an Audible edition.
554 one and two star reviews on Amazon so far. The thing is, there is no telling how many people simply don't write reviews, get their books other than on Amazon or Audible and post elsewhere, or else are too angry to post reviews at all. When you add up the number of angry comments, we are talking a landslide anger-fest against Harris taking our money then shoving manure in our faces ---- and laughing about it!
Everything that she set up over the past 12 books (well, 10. I should have known better, 11 and 12 were an indicator that Harris had lost respect for her readers) was turned upside down in this book. Sookie is turned back into a victim. Strong characters become weak and ineffectual. All the gains that Sookie made over the last books in strength, intelligence and self sufficiency are thrown out the windows. Her vampire friends are suddenly evil again. All the people who hated Sookie and wanted her dead now love her. I could go on and on, but I think I just threw up in my mouth a little.
Don't lower yourself by giving Harris any more of your money. Go read the reviews on Amazon instead. They tell the story better than Harris did - - - and give you very exacting reasons why and how Harris PURPOSELY decided to dump a pile of manure on her readers.
I hate to be derivative, but I agree with Pam Gearhart's review. There just is no "there" there. King has rarely disappointed me in the past and I have many of his books. Sadly, I just can't like this one.
King is known for his characters who feel like they are really here, that they are real people. I identify with so many of his characters. Roland Dechain, Pennywise the Clown (shudder!!!!), Delbert Grady in “The Shining”. And I remember all the characters in “The Stand.” However, with “Under the Dome” there just isn't that connection as there is with so many of the other King characters.
The book is terrifically long, over 1,000 pages. Normally, like with the Uncut Edition of The Stand (1472 pages), I am so deeply into the story that I am still disappointed when the book is over. In this case, I got about 200 pages into the book (with difficulty) and just fizzled out. I tried picking up again several times, thinking I was just in the wrong mood for the book, but I never could get through it. I just didn't care what happened to any of the characters. And if I can't care about the characters, I won't waste my time reading the book. Life is too short, there are too many books out there, to waste time on something I can't get into.
I know some people really love the book, which is understandable. But, thankfully, not everyone likes the same thing, and this is just my own opinion. Take it or leave it, I still love many of King's works.
Raul Esparza, however, does a great job as the narrator.
I will admit it. I love this series, and Reflections doesn't disappoint. Alexis started out in Color Me Grey as a young, a little bit spoiled, a little bit flaky, woman with an interesting background and an interesting new opportunity as the lone female member of a Private Military Organization.
Through the first and second books we watched as Alexis learned and grew, as a soldier and as a woman. Each was a true treat to read, and this third edition does not disappoint. Secrets are revealed, mysteries are solved, and Alexis truly grows into who she was always meant to be.
the wrap-up of this volume of the series would, should J.C. have decided to end the series at this point, be a clean break. Ends are tied, relationships are brought to fulfillment and relationships between the partners are high and tight. Mr. Black is still my favorite character besides Alexis (White is just a little too prissy for my tastes!) but all of the characters, whether you like them or not, are well written.
Though kids and family are taking up J.C.'s time right now, according to her Facebook page, she has written lately that she is working on a new edition, and I can hardly wait to read it! I got these books for my Nook, then when they came out on Audio I immediately jumped on them and have not been disappointed.
The Dark Tower The Gunslinger
"The Man In Black fled across the desert, and the Gunslinger followed. The desert was the apotheosis of all deserts, huge, standing to the sky for what looked like eternity in all directions."
Back in the 80's, before "The Dark Tower" became the huge hit it is today, I lucked out, coming upon this jewel of modern American writing in a tiny little used book store in a tiny little town in Texas. King dreamed up the story from a reading of "Childe Roland To The Dark Tower Came" by Robert Browning, and carries all of the angst, pain an despair which fills that poem.
The series centres around Roland Deschain, The Last Gunslinger, who may be a creature of myth and legend, or simply a man, as he tracks the Man In Black across a bleak and hopeless desert - a desert of reality and of the soul.
"My first thought was, he lied in every word,
That hoary cripple, with malicious eye
Askance to watch the working of his lie
On mine, and mouth scarce able to afford
Suppression of the glee that pursed and scored
Its edge, at one more victim gained thereby. " Robert Browning
The Gunslinger immediately gripped my attention and refused to release me. Poetry, mythology, pain and loss, a searching of the mind soul and body. As a Browning fan, the concept touched me deeply.
Over the years, I was thrilled every time a new Tower came out, and was never disappointed. This is King stretching himself, moving outside his "horror" boundaries, while still remaining true to his writing style in many ways. The world of the Tower is desolate, painful and digs deep into archetypes of the human soul.
Is this another world, somewhere lost among the tides and times of the Universe, old beyond measure and dying? Or is this our world, old itself beyond measure, stretched thin and worn, fading into the universe with a whimper, rather than a bang.
The story grows and develops over the subsequent editions, building and expanding on its mythos, its archetypes, its heart. A serialized novel of depth and power, of heartbreak and redemption, with characters unlike any others, The Tower is a blend of poetry, art and prose unlike any other. Read "The Gunslinger." Then gift your soul with the rest of the series. And think - - - what is real? Are we? Is Roland? Is the world of Roland just on the other side of our own reality?
George Guidell does his normal, spectacular job as the voice of the Audible.com edition of the series. His voice, which has narrated over 900 audio books, and won two Audie Awards for Excellence in audio book narration, is perfect for the part and never deviates from its power and perfection.
Review originally published at Amazon.com and refers to the written copy. I then bought all three of the series when they came out at Audible.com.
I LOVE this series.
Wow. Some of you “reviewers” are really incredibly snotty, aren't you? OK, there are some spelling errors. Take a grammar pill, people! Much like Alex says, “Reading is a habit of mine, not a hobby, but a habit. It seems I just can't get enough. I will read anything.” Alex is up to doing anything too – anything from rappelling down a hill to swimming several miles in clothing and boots. You GO, Alexis!!!
Yes, Alexis comes from a privileged and yet unconventional background, but she doesn't seem all that spoiled to me. She is, admittedly, a bit “young” for her age, and somewhat naïve, and that is somewhat irritating to me, but that smooths out in the future books. Hey, she is 24, comes from an upper class background and has never really had much bad happen to her. She has to learn and grow, just like any young person. She is smart, stylish, and passionate about everything she does. Well, not everything. I mean, who really wants to be a data-entry clerk if they have half a brain? Oy. As “BigAl” says in his review, Alex “. . . has a passion to experience life that most of us lack.”
Some of you are pretty bent out of shape that Alex came from a privileged background, but she certainly isn't cut any slack when she starts out in her new venture as a member of a private military organization as it's lone female partner. And I can't see you whining and crying about her kicking butt and taking names, meeting and exceeding the new and tremendously difficult requirements of her new job if she was one of those with a penis. You would be talking about how “hot” the jock is. As for not really knowing what her father does for a living, other than being “in the military” --- anyone who knows, or is related to, certain military members knows full well that they are never allowed to know what their spouse/brother/son/daughter/wife is doing, where they are going, or when they will be back. Or, yes, what is is they really are responsible for. So get over it.
And speaking of penises – come ON people!!! Not every single book on the planet has to devolve into getting naked and getting it on. It is like you expect every book written to be “Oh, I meet the guy. Oh, I hump the guy. Oh, my life is complete!” Yes, Alex is quite taken by White, and when she realizes who he is, the guy she fell for at age 12, well, that explains that. And Colin is her friend. Yes, she is possessive of him, but who hasn't been possessive of their best (and mostly only) childhood friend? And Black is the kind of person I would love to have for a mentor if I am her. What is not to respect about this quiet, intense, knowledgeable giant of a man who gives her the courtesy of the respect that she earns through her hard work?
OK, I understand the Navy person who complained that the Military ranking wasn't perfect. I get fussy about stuff like that too, when it comes to forensics or other things that I am extremely knowledgeable about. Bummer. But it didn't faze me enough to upset me. You might mention it to J.C. She is on Facebook, and is always extremely nice to everyone who contacts her. I have “spoken” to her many times, and she is a real sweetheart. So, give her a break, people. She has written a series of three book that I, and others, enjoyed immensely. So, there are a few problems. Tell me one author that hasn't done something to rattle your cage at some point or the other. I have read books published by large houses that had glaring errors in them. J.C. Is doing this on her own dime, her own time, and with a lot of her own heart and soul poured into her books. I am sure she would appreciate a bit of respect for doing something that I certainly haven't been able to do, and I would doubt that many of you naysayers have either.
Great action, minimal actual 'violence' and a new twist on action/adventure. Jessica Geffen does an acceptable job - her voice is a bit too 'childish' for my particular tastes, but she fits the character so I was able to become more comfortable with it by a few chapters in, and was fine with it by the time I reached the second book.
Much like “ShySusan Somewhere in Darkest Utah” (Audible.com review) I re-listened to all the Mercy books and short stories, in order, to prepare myself for the newest installment in the AMAZING Mercy Thompson series. It has always been my habit with series I love the most, allowing me to immerse myself into the series and all the characters. And, as always, Mercy (and Patricia, of course ((GRIN)) don't disappoint in this newest installment to the series.
Mercy is tough. Tougher, smarter, and classier than nearly any other Urban Fantasy heroine out there today. She has been through hell in the last couple of years, and the quality of Patricia's follow through and deep care for the development of her characters is still as amazing as always.
Mercy has been beaten, tortured, shot, burned and variously abused. And, she has been raped. Patricia's handling of that rape was brilliant. She didn't break Mercy completely, but she definitely is taking her time helping Mercy heal completely. Her handling of the situation across the last few books has been masterful, making me wonder if Patricia might possibly know someone who had this happen to her. The great thing about her responses is the way Mercy(Patricia) is so honest in her handling of the situation, and how her friends all gather around her, support her, and help her through it. She killed the person who did it to her – bully for her!!!! And it wasn't someone she trusted and had a true relationship with. Unlike other writers, Patricia didn't make it a close “friend” and she didn't make her carry the blame for what happened. Sure, she fells at fault at first, but she isn't made to wallow in guilt and shame. Her flashbacks and panic attacks are realistic, but she comes to realize that she is not truly at fault. Patricia gains my undying respect for that. But, that is another book, the storyline carried into this book, but not overwhelming it. Mercy is getting better. Good for her!!
The storyline continues soon after the events of “River Marked” where Mercy was once again drug into a situation outside of her control, and did her best to handle it as she always does – she sees what needs to be done, and does it, no matter the cost to herself.
As in her other stories, Mercy is strong, secure and focused. She knows, going in, that it is going to cost her for what she does. But she does it anyway, because it is right and good and true. She is the kind of person anyone could wish themselves to be. She doesn't whine and complain, she just does the right thing. She is given what she needs to get the job done, and she does it. Often, at great cost – especially to her body, and sometimes to her very soul.
One of the other things I like about Mercy is her relationship with Adam. He is an alpha wolf and a strong one. But he doesn't lord over Mercy. He doesn't shove her around, force her to submit to his will. He loves her the way she is, tough as nails, scarred and beaten up and all. He knows that she does what she does because it is right and good. He doesn't try to overwhelm, but he does give her the support she needs. In this edition, it is him and the rest of the Pack that Mercy is coming to the rescue of, and he knows without doubt that he can rely on her in all things. Very impressive in a writer.
Many of the other characters in the series make a stronger appearance in this edition than they have had the opportunity for in past books, and I love that. Patricia's 'extras on set' are fascinating in their own right, with back stories that deserve all the attention they can get. She could go on writing this series for as many books as she wishes, and I would invest in every one. But I would also happily invest in books lead by some of the other characters as well – especially Zee. I was, however, heartbroken by the loss of a pivotal member of the story. I know, I know, losses are to be expected, and there has been little true loss through the story line, but the loss of this particular character had me in tears.
As for Stephen, Mercy's vampire friend – well, I am prejudiced. It would be very, very hard for me to be friends with Stephen, no matter what. Hey, there has to be someone you can't bring yourself to like, right? Well, besides Marcillia . . . Stephen has been around since that witch Marcillia first showed up in what was an undiscovered country back in their day – and had everything to do with the fact that Mercy is nearly alone as a Walker these days. Stupid vampires. Hate em, hate em . . .
Even though Stephen is a “friend” of Mercy's, he is still just as guilty as Marcillia and the others of slaughtering Mercy's people. No forgiveness here, Stephen! Of course, as a “Native” myself I am allowed to be bitter about the slaughter of our peoples, right? That is my excuse, and I am sticking with it!
Overall, Patricia's series is quality all the way. As I always listen to her books, I can also assure you that Lorelei King again delivers an incredible narration. We have been blessed to have her brilliant voice as Mercy for each of the books in the series and she never disappoints. Much as Renée Raudman IS Kate Daniels, Lorelei IS Mercy. Talk about matches made in Heaven!
You can read “Frost Burned” as a stand alone. However, I don't recommend it. You would be depriving yourself of a brilliant writer's work, magnificent characters (even those you love to hate), tremendous world building and many hours of pure pleasure.
Highly, highly recommended – as in, however many stars you want to add on to the FIVE I give all of the Mercy Thompson books, you may still want to toss in a few, they are THAT good.
Mercy is, without a doubt, the strongest, smartest, most amazing heroine there is out there today. She went through hell in the last book, things no woman should ever have to go through. She is damaged, desperately. But, unlike other authors, she KNOWS it is not her fault, she stands up, brushes herself off, takes control, gives the blame for what happened to her to the person who did it to her, not accepting the blame for herself. She relies on her friends to help her make it through. She knows that it will take time for her to heal, but she is willing to do the work to help heal herself. She is strong, smart, and did I say, amazing???
If you love strong urban fantasy, a main character who doesn't whine, doesn't blame herself for the actions of others, and can kick fanny and take names, you are going to adore Mercy.
The story moves forward beautifully in this book, and doesn't fail to continue the story in a wonderful manner. You get much more insight into Mercy's family, her friends and the world building continues to amaze. Mercy and Joanne Walker are my absolute favorite characters in urban fantasy today, and Lorelei King IS Mercy. I own the printed copies, but Lorelei assures that I spend much more time listening than reading. I TOTALLY DISAGREE with those who say Lorelei isn't a wonderful narrator for Mercy - she has a beautiful voice, clear and beautiful.
It IS IMPORTANT to read the books in order, and I can guarantee you that the investment is worth it. If you love them as much as me, every time you want to go back and read wonderful books over again, these are definitely the ones to go back to.
Mercy is not your typical female heroine. First off, she never intended to be a heroine. She is more interested in keeping her Volkswagen repair shop running, paying her bills, and living a quiet life in her 70's model trailer with her Manx cat. Oh, yea, and tormenting the werewolf in her back yard. The Alpha werewolf. Uh huh. Well, she WAS raised by werewolves herself, by the Maraq, in fact, the leader of all the werewolves in the US. A pretty good feat for a woman who shifts into a coyote. This books starts working out the whole Alpha thing, and it is fun, funny and keeps Mercy strong rather than making her weak, as some UF authors do to their heroines.
What develops is one of the more well developed series in UF. When Mercedes, or Mercy as she is called (yep. A Volkswagen mechanic named Mercedes) takes in a new, young, isolated werewolf, her life takes a new, and dangerous turn, leading her back into a life she thought she had left far behind.
Next to Kate Daniels (Ilona Andrews 'Kate Daniels' series) Mercy is one of the best realized female UF lead characters on the market today. She doesn't whine, cry, piss, moan, or otherwise turn into a whiny little boy-toy. As time goes along, you can see a romance coming on, but like Kate, Mercy's story is about the story, not about the smex. Thank goodness..... I like a good love scene as well as anyone else, but I am MUCH more interested in the story. There are none of the "seedy, ridiculous sexual encounters" (thanks to Leslie Sims of Denver for that little snippet) that are so common in other supposedly UF stories (read "the label says UF, and there are a few weird characters in there, but it is mostly about the sexual encounters).
I have read the whole series multiple times (there is nothing like reading a strong female character when you are feeling low!) and I am really looking forward to "Frost Burned" due out in 2013. I am rereading the series in order and have downloaded "Frost Burned" already - LOVE LOVE LOVE MERCY!!!!
Jane is raped, tortured and betrayed by everyone she held dear. Beast was raped, tortured and betrayed, and is now enslaved. And you people think this is good? The total annihilation of yet another strong female character?
Hunter did a crap job in this one. Leo sent her to Ashville to do a job, she protected herself from death, and protected his scions also, and she was punished for it.
A man breaks into her room in a hotel while she is sleeping, naked, and shoots at her, TWICE, before she responds, so SHE is guilty of starting a war, NOT him. Yet she is punished by the most vile rape scene I have had the unhappiness of witnessing in an author I used to respect.
And then, Hunter has Leo give and take Jane's blood - - - which, remind me if I am wrong, turned the last Skinwalker into a raving lunatic. So, she is going to use the vaunted next three novels she was just awarded for this stupidity into us watching Jane turn into a raving lunatic, killing and eating humans until she is hunted down and destroyed?
Hunter has lost my respect, and my money. I am sickened and disappointed, not only by the turn the books took, but by the number of people who found this sort of rape and destruction of a once strong character both exciting and wonderful. Where are your minds, people? I don't know what is worse - the fact that I am so deeply sickened by the people that liked this book, or the fact that I am so deeply HURT by Hunter's betrayal of her character - and her betrayal of me, as a reader.
I liked and admired Hunter's portrayal of Jane Yellowrock. She has known more pain in her life than any one person should have to stand. She lost her life, her friends, her self respect, and yet still she helped people, she met her responsibilities, and she gave of her heart, her body and her soul. Everyone. EVERYONE. Betrayed her. And yet she soldiered on, only to be demeaned, raped, and tossed aside like a used come rag. And everyone read it and called it good. I suppose I feel so deeply betrayed because I, like Jane, have been so brutally betrayed through my life. I too was used, betrayed, and thrown aside. Brutalized and yet I still tried to do my best. I Identified with Jane's strength and caring. Only to have her turned into a broken mess, with even Beast ripped from her, chained to Leo, a prisoner in her own mind. Her life, her very soul, is destroyed. Sort of like mine.
I suppose I shouldn't allow myself to become so tied in with a character in a book. But with my own life of pain and betrayal, I had fond a friend in Jane. Through Hunter's betrayal of her character, I have again been betrayed. It hurts. I sit here, crying, once again being reminded that my world is nothing but pain. And knowing that, not even in books, can I ever escape.
Every were and vampire Sookie gets around winds up getting her beaten, shot, staked, raped, and generally treated like hell. Alsead was a self centered ass, Quinn was a self centered ass (well, centered on his whack mom and can't find five minutes to call for WEEKS after Rhodes?) Bill feels terribly guilty for his horrible betrayal of Sookie, and Eric, well, Eric is still just self-centered Eric.
I think she should wind up with Sam! He is warm, loving, caring, (did I mention Warm?? As in his whole body is warm ... not a cold, dead body!)
I'm rooting for Sam . . . hey, I used to handle dead bodies for a living. Sleeping with one? Hooooo boy! NOT a nice thing to consider!
Rereading the whole series now, and really love Sookie, and since I listen to Audible, I can't tell you how much I love Johanna. She IS Sookie Stackhouse.
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