We're all familiar magic and the summoning of supernatural beings, and we understand there are rules that must be followed or...bad things will happen. You've gotta use the correct words, and draw your circle and...protective magical symbols exactly right, and don't let summoned demons trick you into coming out of the circle...we get that.
What makes this series stand out (aside from brilliant writing, very interesting, clever, and funny story, etc.) is getting the point of view of the summoned beings..what are they thinking and feeling...what drives them...what determines if they do what they're ordered to do or...do something horrible to their summoner?
Amazon says this book is for "ages 10 and up" - I fully agree. I'm in my late 30s (that's the "and up" part), and I loved the whole series. Also, I plan on buying the print version for my kids this holiday season.
I mostly read or listen to sci-fi/fantasy and leave getting my cosmology, quantum theory, and particle physics to the nice, digestible shows produced by Discovery, the History channel, and the like. I also really try not to use credits on something this short (less than 6 hours!)...but I'm glad I made an exception for this one. I'll admit I had to listen to the book twice (but enjoyed it both times), and that there are still some things this guy says that...I'll probably never comprehend, but wow...this book is interesting. The author also does the narration, which was actually good in this case - he's got this...sort of...animated, smart-alecky attitude combined with true passion and excitement for his work. I also like his attention to detail (or I should say attention to the right details - trying to cram all the details that went into this work would make a book like this completely inaccessible to someone like me) and his overall...take on science - that scientists don't know everything and how they should spend as much time trying to disprove their results as they do trying to prove them, etc.
Anyway - the book kind of brings you up to speed on where these guys are on figuring out...the universe, and presents some really interesting ideas on where everything came from (spoiler alert: it's in the title :P - but it's not that simple, trust me). If you're at all interested in the subject - get this book. Oh, and one final thing - Krauss doesn't say there isn't a god - just that there doesn't HAVE to be one - but it doesn't take a rocket scientist to be able superimpose god over what's being presented here either [translated: if you believe in god, this isn't going to change your opinion]
I really loved this series - could not put it down. The characters are great - immediately drawn into the story and felt connected with them. Assassins are awesome, we all know that, but this series is so much more... Extremely well written - and not...your standard, predictable story-line...
Get this one.
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