Gretna, LA, USA | Member Since 2006
I've always loved epic stories of superheroes and villains struggling with their powers, their weaknesses, their loneliness, their victories, and their defeats. From comic books to movies, I love the genre.
This is more of a tongue in cheek take on the genre, and a WELL-WRITTEN one, at that. We see this epic battle for global domination from the viewpoint of the anti-hero, a pompous, yet brilliant super genius who uses his superior intellect to create fantastic plans toward world domination, and to foil the superheroes that cause him jealousy and frustration to no end. Mix science fiction with magic and the otherworldly, and throw in a bit of jealousy to boot. This is a story about faults as much as strengths. We ALSO see the story from the perspective of a newly born heroine who is still finding her way in earth's ultimate super team.
The audiobook is fun, fun, fun. Did I say fun? Sure did. It's witty, engaging storytelling at its heart. The writing is fast-paced and very descriptive. You'll also want the sequel to get to the shelf quickly, and rightfully so - It seems to be built for further adventures.
Some books are deep, meaningful works that will spark debates and arguments for decades - This audiobook will not do that. It WILL, however, be a memorable and unusually fun work of enjoyable listening that challenges the superhero genre in a fresh way that makes it an easy and solid recommendation.
So, don your cape, take to the skies, and get this audiobook as you do so!
If you follow my reviews, you know that I like to roll the dice, to randomly buy a series on a whim, on the luck of the draw. Sometimes, it's a bust.
This time, it's a definite win, but if you go by how the series was created, you'd probably run in the opposite direction.
Here's one for the books: Jim Butcher is well-known for his "Dresden Files" series, created a fantastic fantasy series on a BET. Yep, a bet. Read on.
To quote the Codex Alera Wiki site, "the inspiration for the series came from a bet Jim was challenged to by a member of the Delray Online Writer’s Workshop. The challenger bet that Jim could not write a good story based on a lame idea, and Jim countered that he could do it using two lame ideas of the challenger’s choosing. The “lame” ideas given were “Lost Roman Legion", and “Pokémon”.
It DOES sound lame.
Well, Butcher makes it work. To the nines.
I've finished this first novel, and I'm enjoying this unique story line of humans with Roman similarities binding with elemental furies. Add unique races, backstabbing, politics, military battles, duels and an interwoven story line that pulls it all together, and you get a fantastic story that's simply put, a VERY VERY good listen.
The whole concept of fighting alongside elemental familiars used here is wonderfully executed. It's deep, well-thought magic-based partnership of man and magical creature is a pleasure to experience.
So, what about the writing?
Again, if you follow my reviews, you know that I love ENGAGING fantasy or scifi writing. Anything less won't do. And this is definitely engaging. There's great characters that plot, backstab, challenge, fight for their beliefs, devour their enemies, and celebrate their victories. You're taken on a great romp of a story, and in the end, isn't that what we all want in a good listen?
I know I do, and I so enjoyed this first audiobook in the series, that I bought the entire series. Yep. And I'm not disappointed with the decision.
Who knew that Lost Roman Legions and Pokemon could knock it out of the park?
Home run, Jim. Home run.
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