This was the most intriguing new science fiction book I've read in a long time. The plot was kinda standard mystery but everything else was really newThis was the most intriguing new science fiction book I've read in a long time. The plot was kinda standard mystery but everything else was really new. He took some modern technical paradigms, projected them into the future and created an amazingly well developed "world." In addition, the book takes place mostly in an anachronistic simulation of the 1990's. And since the main character is a participant in the experiment there's an interesting ethnographical aspect to the narrative. (eg. he keeps referring to the "tiny feathered dinosaurs" in the park. The author used a great voice for this character and uses a neat plot device to tell the backstory in flashback/dreams.
Overall, this was a great read. I would not suggest it to someone who is a straight fantasy fan, it comes off a little Hard Sci-Fi at times. Although it is not actually necessary that these moments make any sense to the reader, it may be a little off-putting to someone who is not generally a fan of the genre. I would recommend this to everyone else.
After reading about half of his works, this is my favorite Stross novel. I was kind of sad to read that he doesn't intend to write further in his "far future" universe....more
I've watch my husband read Gemmell for years now. I finally found a gap in my reading list to give him a try. I was surprised at how much I liked thisI've watch my husband read Gemmell for years now. I finally found a gap in my reading list to give him a try. I was surprised at how much I liked this book. Normally I'm not a big fan of in depth descriptions of battles ever since I read the Illiad and a guy got his head chopped off from a blow that went between his teeth. But this was well done as brief vignettes that highlight the action without getting mired in the gore. The women were interesting and self sufficient if a little one dimensional. The emotional scenes were believable and even poignant.
I was thinking this would be a "guy" book but now that I've read it I'd recommend it to any fantasy fan....more
I liked this book, I didn't love it. It was, I think, something of a fantasy melodrama. The characters had more depth than this would imply but for thI liked this book, I didn't love it. It was, I think, something of a fantasy melodrama. The characters had more depth than this would imply but for the most part were paragons or dastardly evil. Goodkind tried for more depth than I think he achieved. The themes of love and hate, vengeance and forgiveness were certainly not new. But the plot was engaging, the world rich in it's scope, and some of the prose enchanting.
Overall, I think this was a good first attempt. It may have needed a better editor but I am hopeful that the writing will improve with experience because I enjoyed the world and the story and I look forward to reading the next novel....more