I loved the Thomas Covenant and the Mirror series. This one was written from the first person perspective. I really dislike that type of writing, but it was Donaldson and decided to stick to it, hoping that I would come to like it. Two and a half hours into the story and the main character starts talking about how he raped the woman he took captive. Raped and brutalized her to the point where (paraphrasing) "it took three days before she could start learning how to help him" - I had to quit at that point. I'm going to request my credit back because I simply will not support anyone who thinks that rape is an appropriate part of any non-fiction story. Donaldson did it in the first book of the Covenant series and I found it difficult then. To think that he does it in an even more brutal way and then portrays the woman as 'helping' later puts a spin on rape that is irresponsible at best and criminal at worst.
Even though you've heard much of this story already, it is imperative that you listen to zoe's tale. Her perspective is fantastic and the narration is great. She's funny, smart, still a teenager and the way her feelings and fears are presented (both in story and in narration) are fantastic.
It made me laugh and cry - her stories of childhood and losing her birth parents and her falling in love with a boy her age and her courage and her struggles...just get this and listen to it - it's a very satisfying listen. One you will probably want to hear again and again.
It's me, I know. I just don't like listening to short stories or anthologies. I was disappointed that this book is a series of short stories within the same universe as "the old man's war". In fact, if you look at the list of books under the series "the human division" you will find each of the sections within this book.
If you like that kind of thing - go for it. I don't. I wish it had been made clear when I bought the book.
Because I think all novels should say this up front, I will tell you that there are graphic sex scenes in this novel. I don't think they are necessary and find myself rolling my eyes and fast forwarding through them.
I do think that the writing is quick witted and sharp! The narrator's delivery only helps deliver the punch lines. All of Molly Harper's work has that dry, quick, intelligent and often self-deprecating kind of humor that makes you laugh out loud even when you are trying to be quiet...like when grocery shopping and listening at the same time :-) I get the weirdest looks - and then people smile when they see the headphones almost as if they have done it too. But I digress.
Get the book - it's a light fun read. Not an epic tale to keep me up at night and alternately laughing and crying, but quite respectable.
It's a 3.5 without the unnecessary sex scenes - sorry - I just don't need those images in my head when I'm trying to select a pork loin. The story really doesn't need them either.
This is definitely a young adult book - I'm not sure I'd even call it young adult - it's actually geared toward early tweens. The description sounded intriguing and if it had been handled better, it could have been a great mystery. Things were weird from the beginning, though. A slower discovery of the peculiarities of the town and less scooby doo style monsters would have made for a much better book. Look, I like YA scifi/fantasy novels, but this was just to juvenile for my taste. Far more juvenile than the description suggests, so beware.
I was hoping to get more information on who is behind the anniversary day bombings - no such luck. I'm not even really sure what the point of this book was, other than to make money.
The book follows the stories of a few different people who were affected in some way by the bombings. We see a woman break up with a boyfriend and possibly find someone new. We see people trying to find loved ones who can only do so via DNA gathered from very small samples (since many were vaporized when the bombs went off). We follow a man who wants to find the person ultimately responsible but apparently gives up after very little investigation.
The stories aren't compelling nor did I find the people interesting. It's all just reliving misery in the lives of the people we follow.
Sorry folks, I like KKR but if you don't get this book, you won't be missing anything crucial to the ongoing mystery. I was truly disappointed that a) I wasted a credit and b) I wasted my time. I've been disappointed with several things she's written lately but only now have I seen that lackluster writing in the retrieval artist "world". I'm not sure if I'll get the next one due out in March or not.
I had to look the author up to make sure he wasn't a teenager. I'm willing to suspend disbelief to a degree but this is really awful. A kid in high school can defeat anyone in hand to hand combat because he is psychic. He manages to defend himself against 5 killers without breaking a sweat while avoiding all video cameras.
The society is weird - a child of a broken home is not allowed to marry or have children. Some one is promoted 5 levels and transferred to a new group after 10 minutes in the presence of that new group's commander. Earth is a "bunch of peacemakers" and yet they have thousands of weaponized ships including battleships, cruisers and dreadnoughts.
Protagonist is a fugitive but suddenly is embraced into a special group and is immediately declared the leader of this group. This group has the ability to command all earth's space ships.
It reads like a teenager wrote it with all the "cool" stuff he could cram into it.
The narrator...well, the vocal enhancements (reverb, distortion, etc.) are just annoying and feel like laziness.
Save your credit...skip this one.
I'm a big fan of Brandon Sanderson. He's a great writer and his world building is paced well and sufficiently complete. By that I mean he tells you details about the world just as you need to know it. He leaves things to be discovered as you progress through the book and/or series.
I do have one complaint and I'm surprised his editor didn't make at least an attempt at correcting this. There are points in this book where all you hear is "blah blah SPARKS! blah blah SPARKS!" etc. I'm not exaggerating and it got really annoying at times. Fortunately the rest of the book is excellent, so I can get past it.
This book (and series) is suitable for teens through adults. There is violence, of course, but also some great thoughts/lessons on stereotyping a group of people. The romance is sweet and innocent. The language is only as strong as "SPARKS!"
Get the book. Find a few hours to listen straight through. Enjoy yourself!
The first book was great. There was an interesting detective-like story with clues along the way. There was one sex-scene and the rest was story.
This book - not so much. It is a series of the author's imaginings of what Hell would be like. You go from one tortured description of torture to another. Dollar loses limbs, is subjected to horrific sights, sounds, tastes and experiences. There's no feeling of progression. It's just boring after a while. These scenes were littered with flashbacks to Dollar's sexual encounter with Cas. Now, however, it's really more about the sex. The entire book is torture and sex and sex as torture, in explicit detail.
I know the author can do better, the first book proves it. This book, however is a huge waste of money and time. Relying on sex scenes to propel the story is just cheap and beneath the author's skill and my respect.
Skip this one - you won't miss out on anything.
I love scifi and fantasy. I've been reading the genre for over 35 years now. While this book is well written and fairly narrated, it was just depressing. I listened to the entire book and there isn't a single scene that is amusing or light. There are three main characters. One is learning at a monastery where extreme deprivation and even torture are used as teaching methods. An example is being buried standing up so that only your head is exposed and being left there for several days. Another character is learning to be a warrior but is being singled out for ridicule and deliberate belittling by the instructors, is trying to avoid being assassinated while he and his friends are being beaten up by the bullies. The third character is undermined in her political tasks by treachery and dismissal as a woman trying to do a man's job. Even though the three survive to the next novel there is no real feeling of celebration or joy...just constant setbacks and an overwhelming feeling of hopelessness. Don't worry, I've not given away any spoilers - what I've written is what you find in just about every fantasy novel but in the good ones, you are given something to be happy about and hope that the protagonists will do more than just survive, that they will win in the end. That hope is not presented in this book.
Simon Vance as always does a good job of narration.
Cyborg Dragon Space Ship...that alone should tell you something. This is just a bad book. It is poorly written and poorly narrated. The dialogue is stilted and truly odd. One minute we're listening to characters speaking normally and then it changes drastically. It's as if the author pulled out his thesaurus and went wild. The result is the following sentence: "[,,,] exposing her magnanimous ivory breasts." (see time stamp 4:22:31) I was so startled by this particular sentence I had to go back and see if I had heard it correctly and then I bookmarked it so I could let others hear it.
I really tried to listen to the flat narration and the confusing and poorly written story. I really did try but after 4.5 hours, I had to stop. I just couldn't take it anymore. Save your credits. I hope someone gives the author a dictionary to go with his thesaurus so he can see the entirety of a word's definition before he uses it.
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