Let me point out from the start, that I only made it 1/4 of the way through this audiobook. I am an avid audiobook listener and have tremendously enjoyed Simmons' Hyperion books. This one however doesn't cut it.
The character development is minimal. I have some interest in what happens to the main character Kate. I see no compelling reason though for her to have adopted her baby boy. Of thousands of babies she met in an orphanage there was nothing special about this one; no formation of a bond; no hard luck case that was much worse than of hundreds of other orphans. Still, he apparently is cute and maybe that is worth going through heck for.
The writing that finally got me down involved the endless medical terms and genetic details. I would expect a few just to establish Simmons' validity as a story teller. The continued detail though seriously bogs down the story telling. The narrator can only trudge through just so many eight syllable words before I'm ready to stop listening.
Unfortunately, the reader also trudges through most of the story telling too. Most female and male voices he tries are very similar. The worst is the voice of the ex-husband Tom. This voice sounds just like Rodney Dangerfield. I kept expecting him to finish his emotion filled dialog with a puchline of, "I get no respect!" This reader would do well to use only his own voice, without changing for each character.
The concept of this vampire tale is very unique and very intriguing. It is unfortunate the writing and narration do not deliver.
Sam is a great character. His internal conflict is believable. Jory is a weak character who needs to get over himself. The lesser characters are nearly all well written but there are far too many of them. When we meet a secondary character we also meet his coworkers and most of his family. However, few of them contribute to the actual story line.The exciting thread of the book is supposed to be that hit men are after Jory. Apparently they are all bumbling idiots. Jory freely follows all his standard routines of home, work, and clubbing, but is seldom threatened by those who are chasing him.Jory's interactions with the people who love him, are bitchy at best.The narrator is great. He creates believable, likable voices for each character and accurately switches to the correct voices throughout the dialogs.
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