Elis Peters writes literate novels that assume the reader is intelligent. The Brother Cadfael stories are well thought out very well written. The characters are believable and the stories plausible. "St. Peter’s Fair" isn't Peter's best novel, but in a world of gratuitously gruesome and vulgar entertainment, her historical fiction is always an escape.
I thought that a woman reader portraying male characters might not work, but Johanna Ward does a wonderful job. Enjoy!
Whether or not one agrees with Niall Ferguson, he's always interesting. "Civilization: The West and the Rest" is an entertaining look at why Western Civilization developed its preeminent world position, a look at history through different eyes. He weaves historical facts into well thought out theory. But, a few premises are too narrow to be the full truth, particularly his praise of Martin Luther who was a despicable, neurotic bigot. Still, I recommend the book because it's thought stimulating. Mr. Ferguson reads somewhat speedily, but he's one articulate man.
I love "Law & Order." "The Intercept" reads like a Dick Wolf script, and that's not a good thing. The story is repetitious, derivative, and bland up to the final few minutes. What makes Mr. Wolf's scripts great are the actors in the "Law & Order" TV series. They the characters to life, make them compelling. But, there's nothing captivating about any of the characters in this novel. Nothing. The book reads like a script.
Who wouldn't want to know more about the Navy SEALS and bin Laden? Right? The story has so much promise.
Unfortunately, "No Easy Day" is the most boring, trivial, simplistic account of nothing. Go ahead. Waste your money and time to read/hear the same things you already heard from news accounts and Mark Owens' "60 Minutes" interview. There's nothing new here. And, the platitudes… Don't get me started.
Holter Graham did the best he could reading this novel.
Mr. Horowitz is not the writer Doyle was. The writer does mimic Doyle's style, but, unfortunately, the story is predictable and bland. The one bright spot is the narrator; Derek Jacobi is terrific.
Like most Clancy novels, "Act of Valor" is a middlingly written great story—only without the great story. The story is predictable, melodramatic, and needlessly technical. A reader knows who's going to be killed halfway into the story. The dialog is laughable, particularly between husband and wife.
Maybe the movie is better. The screenwriters have better editors.
There are no surprises in "Steve Jobs." His history, management style, and persona were legend in Silicon Valley before this biography was written. Okay, the relationship with Joan Baez surprised me, but that was it. And, who would turn down an opportunity like Ms. Baez?
Don't expect any deep business or personality analyses in this biography. The stories are interesting, but the writing tedious. The author's lack of technological knowledge prevented him from painting a fuller picture of Steve Jobs in context.
I hope Mr. Isaacson's other biographies are better written than "Steve Jobs." The writing is repetitive, unpolished, and rushed to press without sufficient editing. Did I say repetitive? If I had a dollar every time the phrase "Jobs was furious" was used, I could retire.
The reader was patronizing, sluggish, and sounded as though he were reading a children's bedtime story.
"Liberty" is one of the most mediocre books I've ever read. The story is simplistic, the plot implausible, the characters uninteresting, and the writing ungifted. Mr. Coonts patronizes his readers by filling in obvious narrative with excruciating, unnecessary detail and gratuitous violence. The dialog is particularly laughable. Mr. Coonts' style? Don't use one word or a sentence when you can use five.
The description of "Full Black" sounded so promising. I enjoy a good action thriller. Unfortunately, the book is beneath mediocre. Not even close to good. The story is predictable, the plot unconvincing, the characters thin, and the writing simplistic and bloated. The writer assumes that his readers are too stupid to "connect the dots," resulting in pages of poorly written, unnecessary paragraphs. Where was the editor‽ The narrative of the violence is overly testosterone-driven and repulsive.
The protagonists have no redeeming virtues, unless one believes in the author's political agenda: the end justifies the means. Where is John le Carré when you need him?
Unlike other Daniel Silva novels, "The Messenger" crawls. The protagonists are uninteresting and the action and dialog predictable and preposterous. When a reader can't identify with the characters or plot, the novel fails.
Christopher Lee reads well, but he doesn't develop the characters as well as John Lee. And, his accents are undeveloped, Italian, Israeli, Saudi all sounding nearly identical.
Is this end of the Gabriel Allon character?
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