On the whole, I like this series... but this particular volume didn't really speak to me. I'm a fan of "furry fantasy" - but not a fan of dystopia, so this book, where the world literally crumbles at the main character's paws, didn't score high on my list. Add to that a focus on the very real death and carnage of a major geologic upheaval, and some parts are genuinely grim.
Erik Davies does a good job with straight narrative, but I find that his voices can be a bit inconsistent from one book to another... the wolf Heep, for example. If the story were stronger - as the past volumes were - I might have not noticed so much.
I'll stick with the series because I'm a huge wolf fan - but I'm hoping that this was an anomaly in an otherwise sound tween fantasy series.
It's a fine book for someone who wants to read a more generalized story about working with wildlife or exotic creatures. I generally enjoy those sorts of books... but bought it because I wanted to hear about BRUTUS, not the wolves, wild grizzlies, other grizzlies, and myriad other characters Casey discusses. It was like taking a bite of cake expecting chocolate - only to discover it was, in fact, gingerbread. Not bad, but jarring, and not what was expected.
Focus on Brutus! If you're going to write a book and call it THE STORY OF BRUTUS, the story of Brutus should be front and center. Halfway through the book, I was still wondering what on earth happened to the bear cub between his removal from his mother and the snatches of anecdote about his adolescent and adult self.
The cadence of the narration wasn't my style... it seemed a bit off, emphasis-wise.
I would have minimized Casey's backstory in the opening chapters, having it support lengthier passages about Brutus, rather than the reverse. For example, it truly IS fascinating how Casey observed wild grizzlies... but start off discussing Brutus, his habits and needs, and then lead into the wild.
OR... well, we could take the easy alternative and change the title. A LIFE AMONG GRIZZLIES or WALKING WITH GRIZZLIES would have been more apt, and not so misleading. Don't get me wrong, Brutus IS included in the book... but given the title, he should be the focus, not Casey.
Not a BAD book... it's just not what it appears.
No. I was interested in this book because I hoped it would have specific ideas for making checklists effective and efficient... instead, I heard a LOT about doctors and nurses and how checklists are great for them. I gave up after two chapters, ran to the store, paged through the hard copy, and did not see anything that would apply to my need - making checklists for teachers or parents.
No, but I would be hesitant to read anything by this author again.
It wasn't bad so much as very bland.
Yes, certainly - if you are in the medical field, a medical student, or interested in checklists in a purely academic sense. It's not a BAD book... it was just bad for what I needed, and nothing I read prior to purchasing could fill me in on how it really left it to the reader to tease out the "how to's" of making checklists work for you.
The first chapter is enough to scare anyone away from a hospital. I have panic/anxiety disorder, and my nerves were jangling by the end of the first anecdote. It can be skipped entirely - it's truly not crucial to the book - if you are a sensitive soul.
I was thrilled with the release of one of my favorite Pratchett books on audio, but displeased to the extreme with the vocal performance. The voices for the animal characters and narrator are fine; the humans sound like caricatures. Keith and Malicia in particular are lacking; neither sound like children, and Malicia doesn't even sound female. There are text inaccuracies, on occasion, and while I understand why the German accents were chosen, they don't seem to fit the world of the book.
No... I feel the ending was horrible, almost a betrayal of storyteller/ listener bond. Hated it.
Alter the ending. She could easily have maintained the ending she wrote with a little more exposition, giving the reader more sense of closure in regards to the other vital characters.
I love all of Justine Eyre's characters. She is wonderful.
It made me want to hurl my device through the window of my car. I was THAT angry. The ending was, frankly, awful... A horrible thing to do to readers who have given years of time and hard earned cash to an otherwise great series.
I'd definitely recommend this book to a student or adult fan of children's literature... the characters are engaging, realistic enough for the now-older fans of the original series to appreciate, but still wholesome and goodhearted. None of this "gritty preteen" nonsense with this series... the author manages to keep the tone both light and emotionally engaging, weaving in real-world teen issues (friendships, first romance, social awkwardness) with honest-to-goodness fantasy. The core of Greco-Roman mythology is spot-on, lending a trendiness to what, for some readers, can be dusty traditional tales.
For the tween reader who favors (ugh) dystopian sci-fi, this series won't hold up - but for kids who are still allowed to be kids without the "edge" modern media tries to put on them, this is exactly the sort of romp to fill a snowy winter afternoon. Don't get me wrong - this isn't pat and bland. Percy Jackson's world is to, say, the dystopian realms of The Hunger Games what Spider-Man is compared to the X Men: more humorous, willing to laugh at itself, and definitely not into taking itself too seriously.
Oh, and there are educational gleanings in there, too, from the best place to find whale sharks in captivity to what was going on as Fort Sumter was attacked... happy teacher, here. The best kind of learning happens when kids don't think they ARE learning.
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