I always enjoy the futuristic "space marine" type stories. I love gadgets, and they always seem to have the coolest gadgets around. These are stories I enjoy just to relax. Nothing too deep.
I have read or listened to a number of books by Ian Douglas, and I had forgotten how he frequently goes into long discussions about things that do not seem to be necessary to the story. They are obviously interesting to Mr. Douglas as he provides a lot of information, but in a written book, you can simply skip large sections without losing the story or important content. This is harder with an audio book.
I like this story, but I only gave it a 3 because probably 10% could have been left out. The performance was OK, but not great.
I do not want to take anything away from this performance, which I thought was excellent. However, the full audiobook was a better investment. It has been years since I listened to the original Neverwhere story, and I loved it. You need the time to understand all the complexities of what is going on -- and this is one of the most complex stories around. It is also a little hard to understand everything in the beginning due to the thick British accents, so you miss a bit of the set up.
This would have been a great adaptation from a Marvel Comics theme. The technology and science really get in the way and you have the feeling that you are reading more about gravity mirrors and positron guns that they story. The story really does not make a lot of sense if you think about it -- so don't. It is a comic book kind of story with unrealistic but remarkable high-tech toys. If you like such toys (even though they are unrealistic), you will love this. To convince the reader as to the reality of these toys, the author spends too much time on the technical aspects and not enough time on real character development. It was OK. The narrator did well, considering what he had to work with.
I liked the way Anderson introduced the characters, then circled back around and kept bringing us up to date. The cycle of characters repeats throughout the book. This adds a lot of continuity to the story. My problem was that the story never seemed to end, and even when it was supposed to be terribly tragic, the story just felt melodramatic. I do not know if that was the story (suspect this was the case) or the narrator. Actually, I felt the narrator did an adequate job, but you could not tell from his voice if someone was about to die or go swimming. This story had the epic feel of a James Michener novel, and it felt like it would never end, but then it finally did end, leaving everybody in limbo until the sequel. I do not like books that do that, so it is unlikely I will buy the sequel.
I mostly enjoyed listening to this story, but was unhappy with the ending. There was a lot left unsaid or unexplained. It would have been nice to bring all the information together.
The Narrator was very even toned and quiet. She spoke well, but mispronounced a few words. I felt the story was more dramatic than her reading, which was always very even.
It was a worthy read, and I stayed to the end, but felt unsatisfied when it concluded.
This was one of the more painful experiences I have had with Audible books. Since I did not have the written version, I could not be positive if it was the writing or the performance. One thing was clear, however, that the performance/narration was terrible. At times, I felt it was like a high school audio production.
The story line stretches credibility. The ultimate kicker, however, was that when the story gets to a pivotal point, the reader is informed that you have to buy another book (sequel). That's not going to happen.
My goodness. It is hard to know how much of this is the writing and how much is the performance. I suspect the latter is the bigger issue. You have two groups of mercenaries, but the lead characters spend so much time feeling sorry for themselves, whining about their fate, that the story gets painful. The purpose for the story gets lost in the whining, self-loathing, and complaining. I realize these are fictional stories. We expect the merciless, gun-toting, never-miss killer. When these characters start to whine, you lose me.
I listened to this story over a period of a couple of weeks of travel. I was really intrigued by how the story started. It was clear that the author has a good grasp (or at least the appearance of a grasp) on computer technology. There was a struggle between the ethic undertone of the story and the sheer overwhelming technology involved. I really tried to suspend my disbelief. I am a tech guy, so I was intrigued. However, the story ended in such a way that I almost got whiplast. it was if the author just said, "OK, I"m tired of writing. Here is a mystical pathway to follow. Adios" Very unsatisfactory "conclusion to a very convoluted story.
I think I must have missed something. The "critics" say this was a fast-paced story. My lord, it was painfully slow. The biggest issues were the characters and their interpretation by the narrator. There is no emotion in the way the characters are presented, and Marty, who is always whining, is really annoying.
I suspect this belongs in the juvenille fiction category, although I may be insulting this age group. It is written and performed (it seems to me) for a pre-teen audience. There is no emotion. The story takes so painfully long to develop and most readers would already know what's coming. Each step of the story is predictable.
I am really curious who "they" (the critics) are. I no longer trust any of the first 20 reviews given on any book, which is a real problem for something that is new.
I have this story a rating of two stars. I guess I was feeling kind.
Jefferson Mays does a terrific job of navigating this complex story and bringing all the characters into reality. Corey's book had a slightly different dynamic than the first two books, involving more psychology and philosophical perspectives. It was exhausting -- especially the last section. Great listen in all respects.
I enjoyed the first book in this series, but this one, the seond one was better IMHO. The characters were better developed. The narration by Mays was excellent, allowing you to feel that you were hearing more than one person. Nicely done! There was some referencing needed to the first book, so I am not sure if the second would make as much sense if you had not read/listened to the first.
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