I am an uber Discworld fan so I'll listen to anything from Terry Pratchett. The Long Earth was good. Discworld it was not. I enjoyed it non the les..Show More »s. More in the style of classic science fiction, the only thing it was missing was Pratchett's trademark sense of humor.
I own all of Terry Pratchett's books and this book was a huge disappointment. The Long Earth is obviously meant to be part of a series, and this nove..Show More »l was full of pointless information that did not add to the story, and there was very little character development or humor. The first half of the book should have been edited down to an introductory chapter. This book in no way resembles a book written by Terry Prachett but science fiction fans who enjoy books such as Larry Niven’s, The Ringworld will enjoy it.
If I had to sum it up in one word it would, unfortunately, be "disappointing".
I understand that a five book deal has been signed for the Lon..Show More »g Earth series but I'm not sure if it was the authors or the publishers who came up with that number, if the pacing of this book is anything to go by it was the publishers. I still like the basic premise of this universe but this book really felt like filler with a little bit of setup for the next book...s?
Most everyone's back from the first book, with a few new additions, but generally the assorted sub-plots don't actually go anywhere, or do anything more than circle around so they're ready to kick off at the start of book three, like everyone was in a holding pattern for no particularly good reason.
There are flashes of interest, you can pick out Pratchett's dialog and plot contributions (although they felt startlingly lacking in this volume) and the ideas that Mr Baxter brings are reasonably obvious and interesting when they appear (usually in some monologue form) but the whole thing never gels. It was an incredibly frustrating read, made more so by these little sparks that appear here and there defining the bones of what could have been a stupendous, much longer, book.
This is also how I felt about a previous collaboration between Stephen Baxter and Arthur C Clarke, perhaps he just shouldn't collaborate, or perhaps he needs a better editing team, more willing to request changes from these two very well established authors.
I'm not going to be able to not read the next installment, but I wouldn't recommend this book to any but the most die-hard completist.
On the audio side, Mr Stevens did a bang-up job continuing on from the first book and I greatly enjoyed the way he read this, excellent personification!
The first is the book itself. There's no real plot and no character development. Stuff just happens...Show More » There are many interesting concepts, including the "long Mars" of the title, but not much is done with them. The ideas are offered, there are hints of mystery in the background, but that's it: no resolutions based on those ideas.
The second is with the reader, Michael Fenton Stevens. He has a great voice, and he can British accents with ease. However, most of the characters in The Long Mars are not British. His American accents sound phony and affected, and it doesn't help that he pronounces words the British way even when he's reading in an American voice. (To be fair, my attempts at a British accent probably sound even more fake to someone from Britain). His Chinese and Russian voices sound similarly over-accented and unrealistic.
The end result is a dull book read by a distracting reader. If you fell so in love with the first book in the series, The Long Earth, that you enjoyed the sequel, The Long War (which I felt had similar issues), then you'll like The Long Mars. Otherwise, I suggest you give this one a miss. Pratchett, Baxter, and Stevens have done better elsewhere.