Well, I must disagree with the previous reviews that were very disappointed with this book.
I think to appreciate this book, one has to understand that it is a collection of short-stories (something I associate with the early days of Sci-Fi, whether wrongly or rightly). To fully see what the author is trying to do, the reader has to see the stories as loosely connected. For example, think of how the Spanish-American war; the discovery of DNA; and the rapid growth of communication satellites, all of these this are connected but only tenuously. Think of this book as taking snap-shots in "future-history" and enjoy the stories as you come across them. Don't expect to see character development (just as you wouldn't in any other collection of short-stories) but do expect to see "species-development" in the only method possible broad-over-arching strokes of principles and concepts.
I'm a big fan of the magic or technology being an integral part of the story; a well thought out magic or technology platform really enhances the story. I certainly liked the shapes and colours concept. I also liked what she did with the balancing of the magical powers (no spoilers). However, there is no sense of occasion; I found myself numerous times getting half-way into a pivotal scene and having to backup to figure out just how in the world did I get hip deep into a major conflict (character or military) and miss the start of it? I suppose it could be in part due to the lack-luster narrator performance. Not a bad performance on any particular category just low to average marks in all of them (pacing, emphasis, excitement, etc.).
Not what I expected out of Asaro given that I have 3 other books of hers. I just think the whole production (book and audio) really didn't come together like they thought it would.
I think I'm done with Card. I guess there will always be a place for him in Sci-Fi, but I'm not sure I can take another Wesley Crusher Saves the World story. I've read at least a half-dozen of his and this just seems another cookie from the same tray. I think that my assessment may say more about me than Card; maybe I've been expecting too much military details like from Ringo; maybe expecting too much weapons details like from Maberry; maybe expecting too much character development like Brett. Either way, me or him, I'm done. Not in a mean vindictive sort of way, but just, 'I'm done.'
I tried I REALLY tried. But to say this story takes a while to get going (like half the time) isn't really fair. I don't mind stories that take a while to get moving. I like back-story and learning about characters and the environment in which they live. So much so, that I rarely look at books under 12 hours and almost NEVER buy them under 10. It's not that it takes a while to get to the point, I just didn't care by the time I got there. I don't think that Jonathan Davis' lack lust performance helped it in any way either. The mono-tone drone didn't help me engage with the characters or story. I liked his work with Neil Stevenson and he does, what I believe, is a good job with Asian accents and inflections but it just wasn't enough for this book.I hate to but, I have to give it a pass.
man, I tried I really tried but I just didn't care about any of the characters...not a bit...I only barely cared about the characters in the Ring World series. I guess there was always the mystery of the ring that kept me going in those books but this one was a slog all the way till about the 8 hour mark. I loved the Mote in God's Eye series, characters and all. I think this one was just too thin to keep me going. In sci-fi, it seems that the technology (or this case biology) becomes one of the characters; it needs attention and detail to make it interesting just like a regular character. In this book, that character was pretty flat. I'm not sure how I would have remedied that but there it is; it just wasn't worth it. The difference in the Mote series and this one for me may be that this was written in the late 80's, so maybe they got better at character development.
NIce work Recorded Books! at 7:26:00 you can hear people talking in the background between Rob's phrases! Nice! 80)
no, not at all.
Geeez....a lot more porn than I would have expected....WAY more....porn than I wanted.
I wasn't disappointed when I took a chance on this one (Amazon reviewers really seemed to liked it). Although mine was read by Simon Vance (extraordinary British reader). A must hear along with G.K. Chesterton's biography of St. Francis of Assisi.
...But not Mother Teresa either.
Here is my list of things that should have been addressed in the production. PRONUNCIATION! For crying out loud the same names and phases shouldn't sound so different that you think they are referring to something else completely! The lack of distinction between the character's voices really should have been addressed by the producer.
Here is my list of things that should have been addressed pre-production. GET ROY TO DO IT!
Here is my list of things that should have been addressed by Audible. Tell the publisher to send over the Roy Dotrice version which is posted on their website. I have sent emails to both the publisher and Audible but have yet to hear back from Audible.
I must say that without Roy, vol II is not going to make it into my library for some time if ever (public libraries can often get audio books too).
Well, I can't say it was a waste to get it but I wouldn't get it again. We've seen this sort of thing before in just about every Robert Ludlum book out there. Big Brother kind of stuff but the author was more concerned about warning us of the dangers than developing the plot and characters. Now, if he went more in depth into the worlds of "traveling" or the "big" computer system the antagonists were using (no plot spoilers), that could have helped. I think when it comes down to this type of "warning fiction", if you can't make the reader care, you're going to get no where. And that is where I'm left, I just flat out didn't care about what all these organizations could do.....maybe I should....hmmmmm.....
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