I have read this book twice; this audio version was more comprehensible than either of my previous readings.
Inherent Vice covers much the same physical territory, if Crying can be considered to cover any real geographic location, but the newer book is more playful and less determined to take itself seriously.
There was never a letup in the action and the excitement level remained high. It kept this listener's adrenaline flowing.
The well-described locations and complex relationships among the many characters gave this story a solidity that I appreciated.
I spent four years at Queens University before and during the most recent Troubles in Belfast. This novel is gritty and descriptive. It rings true, at least to me. And it is excellently performed in a voice that captures the accents of Belfast while remaining understandable to an American ear. It also captures the violence and ugliness of the dialect, but this adds to the verisimilitude of the work. Neville tells a powerful story that is hard to put down.
Stabenow worked hard to get some good science into her fiction. The influence of Heinlein on both plot device and characterization is strong, but the females in the story are given a more satisfactory personality than Heinlein usually did. It seems clear that the succeeding novels are being prepared for in this tale, although it is good in itself. I ended up listening to three quarters and reading the last quarter in e-text, since it was free. Both media compelled my interest.
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