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John

Brattleboro, VT, United States | Member Since 2008

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  • The Half-Made World

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Felix Gilman
    • Narrated By Tamara Marston
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (99)
    Performance
    (65)
    Story
    (64)

    The world is only half made. What exists has been carved out amidst a war between two rival factions: the Line, paving the world with industry and claiming its residents as slaves; and the Gun, a cult of terror and violence that cripples the population with fear. The only hope at stopping them has seemingly disappeared - the Red Republic that once battled the Gun and the Line, and almost won. Now they're just a myth, a bedtime story parents tell their children, of hope.

    John Baker says: "best of the subgenre"
    "best of the subgenre"
    Overall

    I gave this 4 stars because it's not quite in the same league as the best contemporary SciFi like "The Windup Girl" or fantastical re-imaginings of the West like Dan Simmons "Black Hills". In the class with other Steampunk books it is a five star. But, if you like all of your stories to be very clear and wrapped neatly you might not like it as much. It's not as straightforward as the typical genre novel. This is the kind of book with an emphasis on allegory and theme with a literary lilt to the language.

    I am also tempted to subtract a point for the ending. My impression is that the author is planning a sequel but was to busy literrary pretense to make the convention clear so it seems to be a bit abrupt. But it kept me engrossed enough and was written well enough to let that sloppiness pass.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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