Pride and Prejudice and Zombies was an anomaly. It was a re-working of a literary classic that retained its cultural significance, while adding in a h...morePride and Prejudice and Zombies was an anomaly. It was a re-working of a literary classic that retained its cultural significance, while adding in a hilarious subplot that actually worked with the original text. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls, a prequel to the original novel, seriously pales in comparison. However, there's nothing terribly wrong with it, either.
Set in the early days of the second zombie apocalypse in England, author Steve Hockensmith gives us a look at what happened before the Bennet sisters became such efficient warriors of the deadly arts. While the story is frequently very clever and very original, Hockensmith seems to forget what made the original so brilliant: the context. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies worked because it wasn't an author re-writing the original work, it was the author presenting "an extended edition" to the original work, leaving the original language intact. Hockensmith's writing is very modern, which I cannot fault him for. The problem is simply this: the humor works so much better when it's thrown into Jane Austen's words.
One thing that I can fault the author for is his own English. While reading the ARC of this novel, I frequently got the impression that this was an unedited manuscript. Mr. Hockensmith, in what appears to be an attempt to emulate Austen's language, goes so overboard with the comic details that it feels like beating a dead horse. We understand the scene, we understand the humor, but we don't need all the extra, extra reminders of why it's funny.
However, despite its flaws, I cannot dismiss Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls. On many, many occasions it made me laugh, sometimes very hard. There's no denying that Mr. Hockensmith has a lot of clever ideas up his sleeve, but reading this book made me think that it was rushed into publication too soon. Had the author and an editor spent a few more months on it, then they probably would have had something great, possibly comparable to the original. But still, I have to say that I recommend it. It's good for a few great laughs, and a lot of great zombie mayhem.(less)
It's a great story, but Tom Perrotta's writing, usually very straightforward and direct-to-the-point, is scattershot and messy. The characters are ver...moreIt's a great story, but Tom Perrotta's writing, usually very straightforward and direct-to-the-point, is scattershot and messy. The characters are very compelling, but poorly developed. Each detail is relayed to you through off-topic anecdotes that take your mind off the actual story.
Not a bad book by any means, but nowhere near Tom Perrotta's best.
Under the Dome, Stephen King's latest heavyweight novel, is by far the best book he's written since Bag of Bones.
With a scale this epic, it's hard not...moreUnder the Dome, Stephen King's latest heavyweight novel, is by far the best book he's written since Bag of Bones.
With a scale this epic, it's hard not to compare it to his masterpiece, The Stand. Both novels are well over 1000 pages in length, both feature a large cast of characters, and both have incredibly intense finales that are impossible to put down.
I'm not going to summarize the plot in any way for two reasons: 1. You probably already know what it's about 2. I don't want to accidentally spoil anything you don't know
What I will tell you is that Stephen King has crafted yet another masterpiece of modern horror: one of the best, most compelling and most terrifying glimpses into the darkest corners of the human psyche. I cannot recommend this book any more. But be warned, this is also one of King's most gruesome, brutal and unflinchingly violent novels.
Approach with caution, but please, please, approach it eventually.
"It is a truth universally acknowledged that a zombie in possession of brains must be in want of more brains."
I had very high expectations for this bo...more"It is a truth universally acknowledged that a zombie in possession of brains must be in want of more brains."
I had very high expectations for this book, and not all of them were met. Just like Jane Austen's original novel, the book moves very slowly. Even the scenes of graphic zombie violence carry the same thick prose. However, the concept is much stronger than I thought it would be, and the author manages to make the zombie subplot work through the book's entirety.
Not a masterpiece by any means, but nonetheless very enjoyable.
Easily one of the best and scariest mystery novels ever written.
Those of you who know me —or my writing— are aware of my intimate relationship with hy...moreEasily one of the best and scariest mystery novels ever written.
Those of you who know me —or my writing— are aware of my intimate relationship with hyperbole. I love saying "This is one of the best ____ ever" or "One of the greatest _____ of all time." This time, I really, really mean it. You can choose to take what I say with a grain of salt, that's entirely your choice, but I am 100% serious, 0% hyperbolic when I tell you that Dennis Lehane's Darkness, Take My Hand is among the best detective novels ever written.
Picking up where A Drink Before The War left off, Lehane's private detectives Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennaro find themselves once again investigating a case that seems pretty standard and simple. However, in the world of Dennis Lehane, this couldn't be farther from the truth. The truth, it turns out, is something more disturbing or terrifying than anybody could have ever imagined.
Dan Brown's got real competition: this book is impossible to put down, and it never lets up. The twists and turns are fast and often, barely giving you a chance to get your bearings before the next shocking revelation. Darkness, Take My Hand is an exhausting novel that will take complete control over your life until you've read it from cover to cover. An absolute masterpiece: one that will surely be remembered years and years from now.
A heartbreaking but wholly rewarding celebration of love.
Add Audrey Niffenegger to the list of "Masters of Modern Literature," for she has truly captu...moreA heartbreaking but wholly rewarding celebration of love.
Add Audrey Niffenegger to the list of "Masters of Modern Literature," for she has truly captured what very few authors can do: the power of true love. You would never guess that The Time Traveler's Wife was Ms. Niffenegger's first novel. The story is rich in detail, her characters couldn't be more convincing... Everything about this book screams "seasoned pro."
What truly makes this book a new classic among romance novels is the fact that it doesn't beat you over the head with its message. Is Henry DeTamble, the male love interest, the perfect man? Hardly. Apart from his inability to literally stay in the present, he steals, beats people up for their clothes and abuses drugs. Is Clare Abshire, the female love interest, perfect? Absolutely not. In other words, these characters feel real because of the fact that there are things about them that we hate, and the characters hate, too.
More than anything else, though, Ms. Niffenegger's story is incredibly complex. By page 30 it becomes apparent that this isn't just some little throw-away novel to her. No. Almost every chapter screams of meticulous attention to detail. Ms. Niffenegger has crafted an entire universe of time and time lost.
Ms. Niffenegger has crafted a deeply moving and truly captivating masterpiece with The Time Traveler's Wife. Here's hoping she keeps up the great work: I cannot wait to see what kind of story she comes up with next.
Not being a fan of anime or graphic novels in general, I was a bit apprehensive when several of my friends recommended this Japanese manga series to m...moreNot being a fan of anime or graphic novels in general, I was a bit apprehensive when several of my friends recommended this Japanese manga series to me. After two years of promising that I'd "get around to it," I decided to start reading the first volume. I'm glad I did.
Death Note follows the disturbing adventures of an exceedingly bright young man named Light, who happens upon a notebook during high school. But obviously not an ordinary notebook. If Light knows a person's face, he can write their name in the notebook, and that person will drop dead of a heart attack. Additionally, if he writes down additional details, including a cause of death, that too will happen. As the story progresses, a brilliant detective named L, whose face and identity is unbeknownst to anybody, begins to investigate as hundreds of criminals begin to drop like flies all over the world.
Death Note is a unique and very compelling story, full of vibrant characters, a whimsical plot and a provocative message: Is it evil to murder the world's most evil men?
An amusing little short story about an Amazon Kindle from another dimension. Has some terrific moments that are genuinely scary (including a nice tie...moreAn amusing little short story about an Amazon Kindle from another dimension. Has some terrific moments that are genuinely scary (including a nice tie to King's The Dark Tower series), but mainly just a technophobic monster-of-the-week short story. Still, an entertaining and amusing read.