Coes is back on track with The Last Refuge! My disappointment with book 2 has been washed away. I loved the action and the political intrigue. Highly relevant to current geopolitical tensions. I enjoyed Peter Hermann's narration too.
The last third of the first book in this series saved it. No such luck here.
First of all, the dialogue from instead a teenager's head does get old after a while. Then the plot is fairly thin. Finally, there is no resolution. No denouement. You are just left hanging as if he wrote half a book and decided to stop there.
The readers are OK and they voice teenage sarcasm well. That's the best I can say.
I'm through with this series.
This book takes place soon after the end of the first book as our heroes deal with the events of the first book. Only this time we get some great new and fascinating characters.
This world and its spirit-based derivation of magic works really well. It sets up some great interpersonal dynamics, not only between people but between them and the spirits of doors, walls, rivers and trees. Only the wizards can communicate with these spirits.
And the spirits have personalities, just like people do. Genius!
The reader on this book does an even better job than he did with the last book. He is perfect for the wise-cracking Eli.
How can I not read the next one? Five stars!
I very much liked the characters in this book, which is very important to me. The lead character is Eli Monpress, a lovable rogue with more tricks up his sleeve than you might imagine. As the title suggests, yes, he is a thief. But he is so much more. He lives life with a smile and he reminded me of Robin Hood in the beginning of the classic Errol Flynn movie:
Nobleman: "You speak treason!"
Robin (with a smile): "Fluently."
The story flows smoothly and the author does a great job of letting me see the movie in my head. The world is interesting and the source of magic is too.
The reader is great as Eli. And I never had trouble knowing which character was talking, which is a problem with the poor to mediocre readers.
After reading a few merely average (or less) books, it was really nice to read a good one again! I look forward to more Eli Monpress adventures.
I really liked the first book in this series so I am shocked at how BAD this one is.
The story just drones on and the plot is often overly-detailed and your attention tends to drift while reading it. There is very little action. The author knew where he wanted to take us but did a poor job of taking us there.
The characters I liked so much in the first book changed significantly, often for the worse. Their jobs changed significantly. The evil people didn't seem to have much effect on them. Suddenly, I didn't care that much what happened to them.
The conspiracy was revealed in the first book, so the author seemed to have trouble figuring out what the characters should do and talk about.
The reader is just bad. I often had a hard time figuring out who was talking.
Too bad. I had high hopes for the series but I'm stopping here.
This is one of those books that you don't want to stop reading. The premise is fantastic and the heroes are likeable (always a must for me in any media).
The story is really great. I'm a sucker for conspiracies and this book has a great one! The author folds in several scientific discoveries and historical incidents too, both distant and recent. Nice!
The author took me in a different direction than I thought the book might go. I like that too.
A nice side-benefit for me was that the book was so thought-provoking. It illustrates man's imperfect view of God. It also depicts how man corrupts both science and religion through his imperfection. You may think differently and still enjoy the story.
The reader was a bit of a problem for me. His voice works perfectly for a smarmy character (there are several in this book). But he doesn't seem to be able to voice a lot of different characters. I got lost multiple times trying to keep track of which character was talking. The better readers excel at differentiation (see Bronson Pinchot). I gave him two stars but added one just because the book he was reading is so great.
All-in-all a great read and I am about to read the sequel.
The premise and the revelation of what this town is about is very interesting. You might find it interesting too. But don't bother with the other two books in this trilogy. The last book especially will just make you mad. Really, it's just the missing ending to book two. And the ONE SENTENCE epilogue in that third book explains nothing.
The reader is not bad. That's the best I can say.
Ugh! DO NOT believe the comparison with the TV show 24. The only thing this book has in common with 24 is the one day time period. No hero really. No political intrigue. No spycraft. Not even any plot twists.
There is very little interpersonal communication beyond military comm and chit-chat. Certainly no romantic relationships.
Instead what we get is chapter after chapter of profanity-laced interaction between--well, in any communication that goes on between any people of any kind. I get the impression that the author doesn't himself know how to communicate without f-this, g d-that. And I mean CONSTANTLY.
Then there is the ultra (read: painfully, excruciatingly) detailed descriptions of battles, mech, machinery, and spacecraft. Right down to mathematical formulas and vomit-inducing g-forces. Page after page of it. This author loves his technology.
Too bad he doesn't love his characters nearly as much. Nor I suspect even his plot.
The reader did his best with the little he was given.
Wow, did the book description ever fool me! But the misery is over now. Maybe a little Pepto Bismol would help.
Although interesting in that this story takes place a couple of decades after the last Grimnoire book, it lacks the usual excellence of the rest of the books and stories in the series.
It just falls a bit flat. I have rated every other book and story in this series 5 stars so it had to meet a very high bar.
Bronson Pinchot does his usual fantastic portrayal of Correia's characters.
Can't wait for other books and stories in this world. I will immediately buy them.
If you have read Hard Magic and its sequels, you'll enjoy this story much more. And you're going to love that series!
So go read the series then come back and read this. But that's not entirely necessary.
Pinchot is wonderful as you might expect from one of the best audiobook narrators around.
Bottom line: AWESOME! I'll read every book and short story in this series because I know I'll love it.
The idea of transporting a modern American town to the 1600s is a great idea and the result was imaginative and complex. But there was just too much explaining and detail about King so-and-so or Captain what's-his-name. It bogged down the action.
The reader was adequate.
I'm not sure I'll read any more of this series.
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