I'll start by mentioning that I did not finish this book, and so this review is based solely on the first 10 chapters or so.
I started this book after finishing the last, currently published, Mitch Rapp series by Vince Flynn (RIP). I chose this series based on a recommendation from a friend that said this series was similar. I was unimpressed within the first few minutes, but kept going in hopes that it would get better. However, it never turned a corner for me, so I stopped the listen. Here are my main gripes:
1) The narration was sub-par in my opinion, and not even close to the same level as George Guidall from the Mitch Rapp series. I know that this has no bearing on the storyline itself, but a good or bad narration seriously impacts my ability to listen to a book. Nothing against Armand, but his narration seemed almost childish compared to George.
2) The storyline was full of holes. No spoilers, as I didn't get very far, but there were so many holes early on in the story that I just couldn't get past it. I tend to over-think when I listen to books, so this could be my problem, but throwing it out there for others to be aware.
3) The gross stereotyping of Mormons was borderline offensive. Full disclosure, I'm a Mormon. Brad's brood generalization of Mormons seemed to paint us as a bunch of women hating idiots. At least that's how I interpreted it :/
4) Vince's dialog in the Mitch Rapp series, that was used with various members of government agencies seemed spot on and professional. Brad's dialog seemed corny at times, and a bit childish. I'm not a government employee, so this is based on how I would expect them to interact, versus actual experience.
I'm moving on to a new series, and regret the credit I lost on this purchase.
I, like many, was affected in many ways when Robert Jordan passed. I had conflicting emotions of sadness and disappointment on not being able to see this incredible epic completed. When I found out that Brandon Sanderson was going complete the series I was excited and nervous. I am no literary elitist, so take this for what it is worth, but Brandon did the impossible.
When listening to this book, I could not discern the difference between his writing style and Robert's. This book picked up perfectly where book 11 left off, and kept me glued to my iPhone more than usual. I found myself making extra trips to the grocery store, driving slower, and taking long-cuts, just so I could have more time to finish the book.
As always, Michael Kramer and Kate Reading do an incredible job capturing the characters voices and emotions. I look forward to seeing the completion of this epic fantasy, and am now going to go check out Brandon's other works.
I agree with some of the others on this one. The storyline had an interesting twist, but the execution failed to produce a quality book.
I have a technology background, and it pains me to listen to authors who obviously know little of technology try to incorporate it into their work. The story had such a childish feel to it that it was difficult to listen to all the way through.
The only saving grace was that you truly wanted to find out how it was all going to end. Then, when you do, it is so anti-climactic and unbelievable, that you find yourself thinking "That's it?".
There is so much more that could have been done with the idea, it is disappointing.
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