Into this serfdom ruled by nobles and the Church, Keane and his men brought the radical ideas of freedom, equality, and democracy, and a technology centuries ahead of the world they must now call home. Yet all their knowledge and training might not save them from the true rulers there, creatures to whom all humans were mere cattle, bred for sacrifice!
©1990 William R. Forstchen; (P)2006 Blackstone Audiobooks
"Some of the best adventure writing in years!" (Science Fiction Chronicle)
It took a little bit of time for me to get "into" the story. But once I did, I didn't want to stop listening. The characters were engaging and the action riviting. The narrator did a great job giving each character a distinct voice. He didn't sound silly doing women's voices either. My only complaint was with the author's use of the words "evenly", "coldly" and "grimly". It got to be tiresome to hear those words over and over and over again to describe how someone was speaking. Other than that, I would now like to find out what happens next! Looks like I must get the next book!
Good story, bad writing.
As a previous review said, every time someone says something in this book, they say it coldly, evenly, or grimly. Or they are grim faced when they say it. Sometimes it happens multiple times in the same paragraph/conversation. Sometimes what they person is saying wouldn't be said in those ways. It doesn't help that the narrator says the lines no differently, even when our author tags them that way.
Speaking of the narrator, I think he used to do voices for american cartoons, because everything he says sounds to enunciated and excited. Really annoying. When he starts to do voices and accents it is much better, but his normal voice really gets annoying.
The story itself is pretty good, if you can get yourself past the writing flaws. A civil war battalion gets lost in another world populated by peoples from various places and times in Earth history. Oh, and man eating giant monster mongols. Cue war.
Do an internet search for Fortschen grimly, coldly, and you will get tons of returns on excerpts from his other books where people say the same things. I blame his editor for not fixing his poor use of those same three adverbs. Most of the time they weren't needed, and they ruined an otherwise good book for me. I spent the last part of it beating my head against a desk.
It gets worse towards the end, almost as if he is getting more and more lazy as he writes. Oh well.
This is the first in a series of books known as the "Lost Regiment" series, and I wish they were all on audio books, however, you have to read this. It is historically accurrate insofar as the regiment goes. It should be, its written by a historian. What happens to the regiment and the story to follow you'll have to read for yourself, but it is a great, exciting, edge of the seat story you won't be able to put down until the end. It leaves you wanting more...to find out what happens after this initial story is concluded.
I hope audible.com puts the rest of the series to audio and I hope some producer takes this story and makes a movie...its ready to be a hit!
This is a new series to me (though I've read Forstchen's "One Second After" and recommend it to anyone and everyone) -- and it was an entertaining listen.
As several other reviewers mentioned, the author's choice of adverbs is a bit limited and repetitious. If it had been written in software that has a word search, one could eliminate abut 75% of the uses of "evenly" and not lose a thing.
There are some other "oops" moments, as well, as Forstchen seems to forget occasionally that the protagonist has but one arm, and would have a bit of trouble leading a charge on horseback while brandishing a sabre or firing a weapon. There are several instances in which characters of different cultures and different languages have no trouble conversing without an interpreter... But the striking omission to me is the lack of attention to the feelings of the regiment over losing the link to ALL their loved ones in the "tunnel of light" event. The author devotes just a couple of paragraphs to this, which would have an overwhelming effect on everyone in the regiment.
Despite all that, Forstchen really knows how to write battle scenes, and keep them exciting and engaging. Lawlor's narration is fine once you get used to him, and I liked the listening experience well enough to order the next one in the series.
I liked the concept but it was poorly executed. At times the book was superb but mostly it seemed to be written for young adults. I may read more just to see if the author can do better.
Having read the entire series and then have the first book on audio is great. The historical accuracy of the regiment is fundamentally accurate - How they react to such an unknown threat such as it is, I believe is as humanly accurate as you can get. I enjoyed re-reading it and enjoyed listening to it. I look forward to the rest of the series to be added to this audio collection. If you like stepping outside the box, you will not be disappointed here.
Can Civil War tactics and technology free a people far from Earth form masters more terrible and hard hearted than the worst slave master in the South? This book is filled with well written action with good character development by a writer who has studied the Civil War period in such detail he can make you feel you are right there with the clouds of gray smoke and the sounds of battle all around people you have learned to care about who are just doing the best they can out numbered and far from home.
I'm usually not one to complain, but I barely made it through this one. The plot and characters were underdeveloped and unimaginative, the narration was one-dimentional and strange (Over-Enunciated), and I thought worst of all was the author's dire need of a thesaurus. I'm all for onimonipia, but not everything on earth goes "snap". I'd pass this one up.
Tried three times and just couldn't get into it. I can't figure out exactly what's wrong with it, but it doesn't work for me. It doesn't grab me. Never got past the first sections. Maybe it gets better, but I never got deep enough into the book to find out. Sorry.
Enjoyed the storyline and the battle tactics. Industrial capacity sure helps when pressed. Not sure "modern" man could fair as well as the Yanks.
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