Pretty much says it all. “A Night of Blacker Darkness,” is a ?fresh? take on the classic genre of the British farce. Set in a world of vampires, vampire hunters, criminals and constables, this book follows the unlucky protagonist as he tries to convince everyone that a he is not a vampire. Overall, it made me laugh and if you are looking for a light read with silly circumstance and a touch of gothic, this may be the book for you.
I have given this a very low rating, but I want to be fair. I don’t think the content was poorly done and I think the author achieved what s/he intended, I just didn’t find it funny.
This is a collection of mostly unconnected short stories written in the style of tabloid articles where the subjects are various characters from folklore. Things like Cinderella gets google glasses and accidently calls her step mother or the Beat and Bell get into a fight over his behavior.
Each story is about 3-5 minutes long and basically works like setup a slightly odd situation include a fairy tale character, play it out and use sensationalized language.
It didn’t connect with me, I got about half way through and just turned it off. However, I could see people liking it who also like people magazine and similar celeb gossip mags. It did a technically good job of satirizing the writing style and topic selection of such publications.
The book isn't bad. But it telegraphs every reveal so much that I feel like its going. "Hey can you guess what is about to happen, can you? What if I give you a hint? TWO HINTS? Eh? eh? eh? You guest it yet? Don't you feel cleaver? Good for you."
Seriously, I wont give the details exactly in case someone reads my review who would otherwise enjoy the "surprise!"
But if you can't guess who Percy's Jacksons father is long before the book tells you, then you may not be very bright or you are a very young kid with no previous understanding of Greek mythology.
The Long war continues exploring the universe created in the long world. In this book Baxter and Pratchett explore what happens to human society when the pressures of scares resources and space is removed. Specifically, how old mental paradigms and the people who have lived all their lives with them deal with no longer being valid. The long war is specifically the conflict between those who adapt quickly to the new realities and start taking advantages of the new freedoms and those who want to deny that they need to change to live in a universe that has two new demotions.
Unlike a majority of Pratchett’s works, this is not a comedy. There is humor in it, but this book is more a philosophical exploration of human society, prospecting, exploration, colonization driven through a science fiction setting. There is little attempt to explain jumping, why it is possible, but a lot on the consequences of it. The root appears to be a variation of the multi-world theory based loosely on a branch of quantum theory. This is however, not hard science fiction; more Douglas Adams than Isaac Asimov.
Overall, it was a fun read with an interesting insight into humanity. I highly recommend it to anyone who loves to explore new and interesting worlds.
X – 1 does a wonderful job boiling down some of the best science fiction of early 20th century into 30 minute dramas. Like with any abridgement, the stories as written by their original authors are almost always better, but this radio series gives you exposure to stories and authors you might otherwise have missed.
Additionally, the show is just entertaining. It was well put together and performed.
Finally, this is an interesting peek into entertainment history. Before the TV was king, these radio shows were are central part of the American persona.
This book is uneven. Don’t get me wrong it isn’t bad. It is in fact very good verging on quite excellent in places. I think I’ll remember Master Wu and his story of hunting ninjas and the secret for quite some time as cleaver, funny, and touching.
However, it starts out as a collection of lightly inner connected pros that could easily be independent and then enters a long story of the core of the book and switches quite a bit. The pacing changes frequently enough to distract from rather than enhance the story telling. It actually reminds me quite a bit of the works Haruki Murakami, however Haruki is more skillful in changing pace.
All that being said there is no page, nor paragraph that I could point to and say that it is not witty, well written and entertaining. I did however at several points have to stop, and listen to or read something else before I could return to this book.
Now, here is the point I really wanted to talk about. I bought this book because when I read reviews here and at amazon.com, I saw several that compared this work to those of Terry Pratchett and Douglas Adams. Nope. Not a thing like. Sure there is humor, but this is more like Joseph Heller and Kurt Vonnegut. Which is to say it is honestly and truly well writing and does have a dry and sarcastic wit to it, but it isn’t a thing like the over the top and silly dry humor of Pratchett or Adams. Shame really as I would love to find someone like Pratchett, Adams, Wodehouse, possible more Adams and Pratchett than Wodehouse really. This book is, alas, not it. Eoin Colfer is also quite good though most of his books are targeted at a teen and younger audience.
I am a huge fan of Terry Pratchett and I quite enjoyed listening to some the background behind the myths and tales from which the discworld borrows. My only complaint is that is spent far too many chapters talking about the Tiffany Aching novels and not enough time on the earlier works. Further, I would have loved to have Nation and Long earth included in the analysis even though they aren’t discworld books. However, overall it was quite informative, interesting, and entertaining.
This light hearted comedy follows the travels of Brian Gulliver into marvelous and very fictional lands. Each of these lands represents the logical extreme of many of modern ideas including a land run by doctors, a land run by back to earth people, a land of just 1 law and many other fantastical scenarios. The stories are well told and very funny. If you are a fan of BBC humor, you will very likely enjoy this series. I am personally hopeful that there will be a series 2.
I quite enjoyed the first story. After years of getting spam, it is quite enjoyable to hear someone putting one over on the scammers and the spammers. However, the pleasure is quickly reduced as the overall theme simply repeats over and over again. I would say this is the equivalent of prank calls with the sole difference that the victims are getting their just treatment.
I could see why others would enjoy this book, but for me, the humor was shallow. Perhaps 1 short story would work, but as a large collection it is just appalling.
The author can be quite witty and as such, I would give this book a 2 even though I couldn’t personally finish it.
Fun little adventure into conspiracy and corruptions. The story is light and entertaining and while it centers around one of America’s largest political hot topics, the author doesn’t express favor for either side of the argument and it only serves as a driving force and background for the story.
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