Wow I really... wanted to like this book. Space. Female linguist protagonist. Non-human aliens. These are things I like.
It just felt really awkward. TWow I really... wanted to like this book. Space. Female linguist protagonist. Non-human aliens. These are things I like.
It just felt really awkward. The action scenes seemed to be decently written, but outside of that, the dialogue was stilted and the characters strangely flat. Then there was the sex scene thrown in there that made me think the author may have started out in fanfic, because it felt like that sort of gratuitous. And to top it off, the ending just ... stops. It's not exactly a cliffhanger, but it felt like actually the entire book was just a prologue to set up the actual 'adventure' that is meant to happen.
I think this was the author's first published novel, so I might try the sequel sometime to see if it improves, but basically "it was okay" is the best I could muster about this one....more
As of right now (2014/01/18), I am still a bit spotty in understanding in some places, and my rating has more to do with somehow rekindling abnormal aAs of right now (2014/01/18), I am still a bit spotty in understanding in some places, and my rating has more to do with somehow rekindling abnormal amounts of enthusiasm about this series than it being particularly well written, ahah. I might revise it on a later re-reading. But having never read the manga before and yet knowing the anime pretty well/having just rewatched it, it's interesting what's different and what's the same....more
One: why are there suddenly Japanese? Of all the cultures to randomly throw into your primarily Jewish/Muslim/Christian religious mix, why on earth woOne: why are there suddenly Japanese? Of all the cultures to randomly throw into your primarily Jewish/Muslim/Christian religious mix, why on earth would you decide to add Japan.
Two: I must say, I'm not sure any other writer gives me the impression anyone could die permanently half so well as Hurley. Which I both enjoy, because it's unusual not to be able to rely on "the good guys will be okay", but also hate, because half the time I get invested in someone in this series they die.
Three: I really hope there isn't actually more, because it gets more and more ridiculous for Nyx to manage to complete missions as is, and we also keep creeping further and further into magical omnipotence for shifters and magicians. Also I have feels about Nyx and Rhys, but I don't want to get into that right now....more
So this book gets described as similar to Ender's Game a lot, in that "If you liked one you should like the other," and I do see why they're listed asSo this book gets described as similar to Ender's Game a lot, in that "If you liked one you should like the other," and I do see why they're listed as similar because hey, smart kid in space in the middle of a war being instrumental to the ending of that war by being used as a tool by adults, basically, but they feel so different to me, I'm not sure that's what I'd compare it to if I was going to compare it to anything. And I really wouldn't recommend one just because you liked the other, unless there were other factors that made me think you'd like both. What just jumped to mind was that it actually reminds me more of Kushiel's Legacy, in the narrative style, story, characters, and themes, though obviously not in setting.
I did like the book, but not with the head-over-heels love I felt for EG. I didn't love Jos even close to the way I loved Ender. Which I'm actually not sure if is a matter of when I've read each of them: I read EG when I was 12 and an isolated smart kid in a clique-y private school, so I grokked Ender then in a very "This is my life" way, and I also doubt I'd have quite the same sort of connection to him and the book if I'd only been discovering it just now, having grown up and away from that period in my life. So maybe if I'd read Warchild also when I was 12, I would have found it way more button-hitting than I do now, also.
But I do think it's also a matter of what kind of stories they each are and what kind of characters they are, and it would have been different anyway. Warchild is much more personal: most of the story is told in first person, so you're literally reading what Jos sees and thinks about events, and I feel like you could argue that the story is mostly about how Jos connects to people, quickly and deeply and refuses to let go, whereas Ender's Game uses third person to put distance between you and Ender the way the rest of the story shows how everything in Ender's life drives wedges between him and everyone else, even those he wants to be close to.
I may have more thoughts later, but I kept making these compare/contrast thoughts in my head while reading it so I figured I'd just write that down. I do want to pick up the other two books, and it's also made me more confident I will enjoy Gaslight Dogs, so I think I will pick that one up too.
Random: The first section of the story is actually written in second person, and it made me very irritable. I flipped to a random page in the middle of the book just to see if it switched voice at any point, because otherwise I was pretty close to throwing it across the room....more
Under normal circumstances, I probably would have only rated this book a three, as plot-wise, it is hardly riveting, though enjoyable enough. Though tUnder normal circumstances, I probably would have only rated this book a three, as plot-wise, it is hardly riveting, though enjoyable enough. Though the Enderverse books are never solely about the action, the focus is usually less trained on the characters themselves and their growth than some overarching plotline, which I felt was reversed here. There is still the usual intrigue, but the real reason I had to rate this book with four stars is simply because the book is about Ender and how he thinks and feels in the aftermath of winning the war and he is apparently a horrible Achilles' heel of mine.Essentially, I'd mainly recommend this book to diehard Ender fans. If you like the Enderverse in general, you'll probably enjoy it, and if you love Ender himself, I'd wager you'll really enjoy it, but otherwise, it's not a brilliant sci-fi novel or even particularly well-written....more