This is one of his 'mutant/monstrous outsiders' who rape and kill sort of books, who's formula is similar in many way to 'Ghoul' and 'Urban Gothic' (though both of those are superior novels to this).
Brian does a fair job of setting up a believable 'survivor' reality TV show setting complete with the sort of people you find in such programming- and then mixes it in with his creatures. However he dramatically lessens the effectiveness of his horror story by adding a few paragraphs from the creatures perspective early on in the book which effectively diffuses the tension and mystery with an early creature reveal. From then on its a B Movie 'by the numbers' sort of story. Most of the horror isn't tension but either gross out or uncomfortable graphic scenes of a sexual nature.
To his credit Brian does throw in a few surprises, and has some interesting characters I grew to like. His reality TV show portrayal is accurate and believable. ( I've actually been on a reality TV show so I can vouch for how that aspect felt right) I grew to sympathize with the characters plight and wanted to see what happened to them, "B movie" story telling and all.
This novelization of a really old Dungeons and Dragons game module. That might sound like a stupid concept - but the author doesn't take it too serious and had a lot of fun with it. The characters are fresh, the adventure light,and dialogue boarders on outright comedy with interesting and musing interaction.
Once this story has laid the ground work it needs in the first chaper - it really takes off and captivates for a long and constant ride. Marisha Pessl creates a realistic sense of mystery and suspense with complex and interesting characters. The story slowly pulls its parts in, tightening the mystery's web in a delightful fashion. The producers choice of an A-List reader, Jake Weber was spot on for the story. Everything really falls into place with this suspense audiobook.
This started off strong, but the story developed so many jumps forward and back in time I lost interest with the otherwise very fine characters. The story seemed like it had too many of its own spoilers, tipping its hand too early, and then running back to how this all led up again and again and again. Rather anti-climatic. Instead to the tension and peril tightening, I found it to be the polar opposite, dragging and tedious.
I put this down about half way through since I didn't care about the characters anymore and there are so many other books out there to sample.
Christopher Buehlman makes a wonderfully fresh and different story from the modern vampire story. As he so frequently has done with his other novels, he takes a genre beaten to the ground by pulp authors, and get you to quickly care about the people he creates.
If you are unfamiliar with his works, Christopher often puts a heartbreaking, harsh and realistic edge in his stories. He also seems to not be interested in writing sequels, though if he were to deign to do so, many would line up to see the return of his characters and follow their adventures again.
I'm a fan of Charlie Huston's other works. However this one was very irregular in the way the story was told and jumped about. The characters never really caught on. Something about it just never grabbed me. Perhaps I'm prejudice regarding the stories subject matter, having been a contractor for the US gov's alphabet soup agencies in the bitter post 911 climate. A case of reader nit picking? Maybe. Irregardless, this feels like one of those unfinished novels an author digs out of his or her bottom drawer to fill a promised quota. It falls short of his other works by comparison.
I don't know about you but I've grown so very tired of looking for magic and fantasy novels. It seems like i'm always Pawing through trite, whiny tween books, and the predictable female power/porn/romance fantasy novels. Blargh.
Finally! A really good magic/fantasy novel written for adults. The main characters are dysfunctional, sometimes distasteful, but in the end realistic and ultimately interesting. There's real danger and they make mistakes. The writing isn't for kids, and its not all about romance/fantasy daydreams. It feels a lot like Peter Clines "14" with modern characters and classic fantasy mixed.
Larry Correia is a talented, entertaining writer, and Ray Porter (reader of the excellent novel "14") is equally fun to listen to. So this is a really nice combo for some fantasy novel reading.
The setting of the story is from the table top war game "WarMachine" from Privateer Press. A Warhammer 40K sort of story - 14th century Crusades meet SteamPunk SciFi robots and some fantasy magic tossed in. So this odd setting is taken and given a "Dirty Dozen" story plot. You'd think this would be one to avoid - but Larry Correia pulls it off nicely although its far from 'great'.
Its sheer pulp fiction with the flaws you'd expect. It's a little stale at times, pushing tired stereotypes and paper characters around the pages. The story is also a little weak in the dialogue with Soldiers sounding like the way civilians sound like when trying to talk like a military person. We hear this "Silly Civie Speak" in Hollywood writers all the time. I'm sure Larry knows what the clipped and abbreviation jammed talk should sound like and chose to dumb it down.
The WarMachine religious Crusades setting does feel a bit creepy with the wars in many countries with people labeled religious zealots today. This sci-fi veil of 'this is only a fantasy world with no ties to what is happening today' feels pretty thin. Is Larry trying to make this connection and statements while armored in the deniability of SciFi fiction? If so I wish he would have not done that and just engaged in combat with the Goblin races or Mercs, and avoid the whole 'middle east" in turmoil theme. I picked this book up for good fun - not to relive Military service and questions of ethics and war in countries with troubled populations.
Irregardless of a few flaws that should have been edited, the book is solid entertainment and you can pretty much expect that from Larry Correia. I was able to purchase this story with out a second thought, and have solid good entertainment until the end. Larry has never left me down as a constant reader and a fan.
Argh - the furthest decline yet in the previously interesting and creative stories of the Sookie Stackhouse/Southern Vampire Mystery Novel series. I love the earlier novels - they're classic - but these later ones are just so phoned in. I wonder what happened to Charlene's inspiration.
There is nothing new here - no where to go with the story - the characters do their same old static shtick. (Sookie even makes a joke about this in the story) The only thing left to do is burn out some of the previously interesting characters, add a few poorly flushed out villains and minor characters, and slowly spin towards the final conclusion of the series where presumably something exciting will happen.
I found this dramatized novel to be a little better than many of the Star Wars novels. I always think the injection of Star Wars sound effects and music to be a little unnecessary, but the writing and narrator are quite good and power on through the goofy sound effects.
If you've enjoyed Star Wars novels in the past - or if you're a fan of the 'Knights of the Old Republic' then you'll likely find this book an entertaining listen.
I assumed this was a lame Tron/Cyberpunk/Matrix retelling.. Wow! I mistaken about it being just another tired, junky "Tron" or "Cyberpunk" B novel. Its a great surprise - like when I listened to "14" for the first time, only better.
Bottom line - This is the best book I've listened to in years. There is a sea of trash out there and this is the kind of 'great' story you seek and hunt for among all those other titles.
The author weaves a bleak future earth - but the story and its characters are all romantically nostalgic and Geeky in a great, fun way. This is a big hook - its always interesting and steers clear of being completely depressing and bleak. I found the novel to be exciting and interesting from the first line - to its last. I even enjoyed keeping Google open in a second window to look up all sorts of fun references made in the book.
I am an older game developer and professional geek at heart who gets payed to entertain others. So I really 'got' everything being discussed, and I think most people will still follow along easily too and enjoy the story.
Regardless, this is now on my 'Top 10 favorite Novels'.
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