Bloodlist is the first of an eleven book series. I found this first one at Audible, liked it, and read the next ten in the series. I'm looking forward to Audible getting the rest on line. Some of the plot twists can be a stretch, but on the whole the characters and plot lines are great story telling.
Intense Refreshing Gripping
The standout scene occurs early in the first book when the title character undergoes vivisection. After that the buy into the main character's point of view is complete and there's no turning back.
I listened to the sample because I saw her name as narrator. And yes the audio version and in particular the Ms Pearlman's talent as a narrator add another dimension to enjoying the book just not available to silent reading of the text.
The quality of the writing is high and sustained through out the trilogy. Often such a fantastic first book is followed by a weak sequel, but that does not happen here. Shepard not only understands his main character thoroughly but has an unusual grasp across a broad range of very real political and philosophical issues. All too often a SF writer will sketch out a simple black and white conflict - political or other issues - and then have the characters run through the plot. Shepard achieves something I've rarely seen in that on both the political dimension and across several softer issues he sets up a very believable universe within which his characters operate. But these background issues are never allowed to dominate. The story is well told and the characters always in the center of the action with the wider issues and setting providing an enjoyable and very realistic background.For example, in the political realm in SF authors often can't help grinding some current axe, but Shepard resists anything like that. The political factions are not reflections of today's, but realistic creations fitting the future world that the main character - Sandy - lives within.The struggle between those people and entities against the creation of artificial life vs those who wish to embrace its potential would seem to set up a very black white background, but that doesn't happen. As the main character moves through the trilogy it becomes clear that this division is nuanced with hidden agendas popping up from unexpected but believable sources. And at no point does Shepard allow some very complex background material to overwhelm his main character(s) or their stories.Shepard could have fallen into the trap of not allowing one side to have of the 'right' on some moral ethical issue. In the third book one android recommends to another to read the book by Shelly 'Frankenstein' in order to understand why the organic humans fear the created artificial life forms so much.
Well thought out presentation of the terrorist problem and possible solutions facing America. Those who see our terrorist threat primarily as a legal problem will react badly to what the authors have to say (and might even try to score the book low not on its merits, but because they're afraid of its content and want to supress a valid point of view). Those who see a need for solutions with less due process and more direct action will appreciate the analysis. The work is an excellent contribution to the debate over where we go from here.
As is typical for a book covering a political topic like this one, you will find most reactions are either in the over-the-top-hate-it or over-the-top-love-it category. If you hate Bush and are even more stirred up by the least rumor of some conspiracy, you are not likely to read even part way through this book, which is really too bad. I found the book very insightful on many aspects of Bush. One area in particular that was very good was the author's coverage of Bush's relationship with his Father, which is, I now understand, much more complicated than I had guessed. I found some of the most interesting sections dealt with how and why Bush gets the left so upset because it reminds me of some of my personal reactions to Clinton, the President, when he got the right so upset not too long ago. But I think this is something many of the people so rightously upset by Bush today are going to learn the hard way. If you like Bush already, this book will explain a lot of how the man is able to accomplish so much. Anyway I highly recommend taking the time to listen to it.
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