The Doctor and Rose 'trespass' on a human prison planet, and as punishment they get locked up themselves. Rose is in Juvie pretty much, and The Doctor...moreThe Doctor and Rose 'trespass' on a human prison planet, and as punishment they get locked up themselves. Rose is in Juvie pretty much, and The Doctor is banged up in a prison for aliens, where he has to bunk up with two Slitheen, and made to work on research and development (futuristic prison labour!). This was even a bit better than the last doctor who I read - Doctor Who: The Clockwise Man, although, I don't think think I can push it up to 5 stars, because it's a tv-tie-in, not a literary masterpiece.. is that mean? :P The doctor who was very definately ninth doctor, totally well done on that. I got a bit fed up with the Slitheen in the series, and by the time I could actually say rexacoricafallipatorius I was totally bored of them. But they're a bit better in written form, I guess it's because the writer gets to be as creative as he likes without worrying about budgets.
The Doctor and Rose take a trip to 1920s london, and end up stuck there and entangled in a mystery, when someone steals the tardis. The story was real...moreThe Doctor and Rose take a trip to 1920s london, and end up stuck there and entangled in a mystery, when someone steals the tardis. The story was really well thought out, very good as a mystery/whodunnit style that makes me want to read more detective novels! I love the clockwork elements; the clockwork have been my favourite throughout the new doctor who series, it's almost steampunky. I thought the characters were pretty well written, contrary to other reviews on this book, I really could see it as Doctor Nine and Rose. Maybe it was well written or maybe I have christopher eccleston's voice stuck in my head? Anyway, 4 stars! I'm glad I picked up the boxset, onto the next one!
It's 1976, and the world's population has been wiped out by an unknown affliction. Robert Neville is the last man alive. Immune to the plague by some...moreIt's 1976, and the world's population has been wiped out by an unknown affliction. Robert Neville is the last man alive. Immune to the plague by some trick of fate, he is left alone in the world, with nothing but an unescapable will to continue living.
After dark, the dead population come to stand outside Neville's boarded up home, to taunt and torment him. He keeps them away with garlic, crosses and mirrors, lest they come after his blood. During the day he goes through houses staking the people as they lie comatose in their beds. His nights are sleepless, and his days are bleak and lonely. Eventually he turns to investigating the disease, mainly as something to do, basically teaching himself the biology from scratch, and trying to bring scientific reason to vampirism.
Matheson's writing is really just amazing. For the majority of the book, Neville is entirely alone, just doing whatever is necessary to survive, and the majority of the dialogue is just Nevilles own crazy internal thoughts. And for that to continue for so long, and yet to be the complete opposite of boring.. it was exciting. It's so good in fact, that I read the entire book in one go, and I don't often do that.
I had previously seen the movie (the Will Smith version), which I actually liked very much, don't flame me! But this book of course is quite different. And then someone had explained the plot of the book to me, after I saw the movie, but despite this, I still found so much in the book that was just unexpected.
(view spoiler)[The one point that I'm left confused on, is whether Neville survived or not, I just can't get my head around it. For those people that have read the ending it might be clear to you. But I just can't get past the fact that this book is the point of view of Neville, it's almost as if he wrote it. And how can he tell a story if he is no longer alive? I would love to ask Matheson if he did it this way on purpose, to make me confused, or whether it's just a writers trick to have his protog tell his story from beyond the grave.. (hide spoiler)]
Additional Warning: If reading the new SF Masterworks edition, Do not read the introduction before the book, it's a bit too spoilerific, it would have been better at the end of the book as a review.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
Alexia Tarabotti, is a half-italian, allegedly unnatractive, past-her prime (at 26) young woman. Living in Victorian britain. Who has nothing left for...moreAlexia Tarabotti, is a half-italian, allegedly unnatractive, past-her prime (at 26) young woman. Living in Victorian britain. Who has nothing left for her in life, but to escort her younger and more eligible sisters to parties that she has no interest in (apart from the food, or lack thereof). She also happens to have no soul.
Then Alexia gets accosted by a hungry vampire in the library, and inadverntently kills him while fending him off. Vampires aren't actually suprising in this version of victorian society, nor in fact are werewolves. But what is mysterious is that the vampire was not sired by any other vampire, and was untrained and mostly unaware of his origins. This is the mystery. And that seems a good point to introduce Lord Connal Maccon, Alpha of the local wereworlf pack, and head of BUR (which stands for something pompous to do with paranormal investigation or beurocracy or spies or something). Maccon is apparently big, gruff, scottish, etc, everything that is expected of an Alpha werewolf. And Alexia and he don't get on at all, which is to say, they're blatantly denying the mutual repressed attraction for one another. Adventure follows.
Suprisingly, I gave this book 3 stars. I actually liked it. But I feel like I shouldn't have. I think this is similar to the reaction that some people have when you mention 'twilight' to them, they don't want to admit that they might actually have enjoyed it, or be tempted to read it if they hadn't, and their reaction is always over-emphatically "No, that stuff is awful". Well I rated twilight 5 stars, and I actually stand by that unashamedly, but this novel is different, this must be My version of the twilight dilemma. What I mean is, I feel slightly ashamed of my 3 stars. While I was reading it, my notes (yes I write notes now while reading) were largely about what was annoying, or just plain wrong about the book. And yet I ended up enjoying the thing anyway. I feel like a little bit of a literary failure.
So what was wrong with it? Well where to start.. Alexia is a spinster apparently, we get told this repeatedly, despite the fact that she's only 26 and as such is far from being past child-bearing age. Either this is part of the 'relate to the heroine because she's apparently unnatractive and unworthy but she proves them wrong' trope. Or the author just really loves the word 'spinster', like she loves all other unnecessary words being thrown about, without regard to conventional use or grammatical correctness, because it feels all victorian or something.
Many people have claimed that the book is very 'Austen', No no no no, it's not Austen at all. Thats the kind of thing you might say if you thought you knew or liked Austen, just because you've seen the crappy new Pride and Prejudice movie, or heaven forbid.. bridget jones diary. No it's not Austen. Not any more than Terry Pratchett is JR Tolkien. Not to say that either is worth less than the other, but really, to compare them like that is probably to an insult to at least one of them. This is not Austen style writing, and it's not Austen style wit. It does have it's own brand of humor, and it goes for a faux-period comedic style of writing, that I actually enjoyed, but it's certainly in it's own class, not miss Austen's.
The one thing that was most jarring about the writing, and stopped it from being otherwise a fairly smooth read (despite ignorable grammatical errors), was the quantity of modern American terms used. I'm afraid to say that Alexia had 'jelly' on her breakfast instead of jam, and 'creamer' in her tea instead of just cream. Greatly spoiling the illusion of what was otherwise a fairly enjoyable alternate steam-punk victorian setting.
And so, it may have annoyed and irritated me like mad, it may have been stereotypical on the wallflower heroine/Alpha male hero romance front, Alexia's soulless state had a distinct lack of effect or involvement apart from one supernatural ability which could have been explained by any other non-explained-title, it may have misused and abused the english language.. But I admit. I enjoyed the damn thing. Because if I get over it, it's just fun, and it's got cool steampunk type things, and it's kinda quirky and it grows on you even if you really hate it, similar to a grumpy scottish werewolf I suppose.
Jhereg is a fantasy with a sort of reverse murder-mystery twist; where the protagonist's dilemma is not 'Whodunnit?' but 'How do I do it?'.
Vlad Talto...moreJhereg is a fantasy with a sort of reverse murder-mystery twist; where the protagonist's dilemma is not 'Whodunnit?' but 'How do I do it?'.
Vlad Taltos is a skilled assassin, but his latest target is a little tricky to tackle and a little hard to find. But luckily Vlad has a small cadre of friends of varied talents to call upon, including his assassin wife, and his psychically bonded pet jhereg (a sort of miniature dragon).
Vlad is also living proof that not all assassin characters have to be darkly brooding, friendless loners. And the banter with his pet jhereg shows how lighthearted a character he can be. Not that he doesn't ever have questions about what he does, but the overall tone is quite light. I suppose in a world where death is not generally a permanent state, this certainly makes some sense. Most assassinations, (if not done with a morganti weapon) can be easily remedied by a sorceror, and the assassination serves more as a threat or a public humiliation than anything else.
Brust has built an interesting world for his series. The incredibly long-lived race of dragaerans, with their occasionally pointed ears, and love of sorcery are reminiscent slightly of elves. But their infighting and their tendency to be not always good guys certainly makes them different. Normal humans do live quite comfortably in this tumultous empire, but are often looked down upon by the 'superior' dragaerans. Vlad himself is a human, but has set himself up quite well, and made some good allies. One major reason why I'm likely to read more of this series is to find out just how Vlad is such an ally of questionable dragaerans like the character Morollan. Hopefully later books in the series will explore Vlad's past in greater detail.
In summation, this is a lighthearted yet detailed fantasy romp, with some good worldbuilding and a troop of interesting characters. If a little tiny bit deus ex machina in places. Recommended to fantasy lovers, especially if you like antihero types.(less)
Just the other day, I discovered an astonishing fact: Scott Lynch keeps a Live Journal.
This is just not possible.
Scott Lynch is not a mere mortal li...moreJust the other day, I discovered an astonishing fact: Scott Lynch keeps a Live Journal.
This is just not possible.
Scott Lynch is not a mere mortal like you and I. He should not keep a blog. He should not be seen at conventions. He should not have relationships with other writers. He should not live anywhere mundane and earthly like Winsconsin.
Scott Lynch is not a man, he's a legend. His books are not written by mortal hands. They are written with unicorn hair quils, inked with dragons blood, suffused with the breath of elves, carried to us by the hands of angels, who float on sunbeams drifting across the universe to us from far distant galaxies.
Thats why they take so bloody long to arrive.
The plot: The city of Camorr is a fantasy city reminiscent of a mediaeval venice. Composed of several islands and networked with canals; from the filthy squalor of the slums to the shining spires of elderglass. Street thieves, pickpockets, gangs, merchants, priests, alchemists and nobles all packed into one interesting city. Locke Lamora and his group of gentlemen bastards began as thieves, but were taught to be something better and brighter. Now they spend their time conning noblemen out of their riches, and conning Capa Barsavi into thinking they're still just honest street thieves. Locke and gang are in the middle of their biggest, most elaborate con job yet, when the elusive Grey King decides to use them in his own nefarious games.
Thoughts: Locke is one of the best anti-heroes I've read. He has a wit to rival that of Tyrion Lannister. And his ability to plan so intricately and meticulously, with every contingency prepared for, and with twists upon twists, is just awe-inspiringly beautiful. The lure of the character is that even the omniscient reader doesn't know what Locke ultimately has planned until it all unfolds, and he does it with such a hillarious sarcastic wit too. But don't worry, Locke is saved from the terrible fate of becoming a Gary Stu, by being remarkably not at all tall or handsome or strong. And by the fact then when he does get foiled in his plans, things have a tendency to go horribly messily wrong.
The story is told in a really interesting manner, as an alternating series of flashback episodes (Locke's childhood learning his trade as a con-artist) and 'present day' episodes (The gentlemen bastards current con job). At first I was inclined to be a bit frustrated by this, as each part ended just as it was getting really interesting and flicked to the alternate time. But the brilliance of this soon becomes clear because each flashback links directly to the next 'current day' episode, for example, showing how locke learnt a particular trick of the trade that will shortly be useful in the present con-job.
The Lies of Locke Lamora also contains one of my absolute favourite fantasy tropes; that of the ancient but long-lost, highly advanced civilisation which has left behind some mark upon the world, but on which very little is known. In the world of Gentlemen Bastards there are structures made of elderglass, a magical, beautiful and super-strong glass; including impossible tall towers. The citizens happily make use of elderglass, and some claim to understand the properties, but yet no one knows how it is made and who made it. Did I mention I love this device in fantasy novels? As if Locke's fantastic personality were not already enough to keep me reading, the mystery of the elderglass and it's alien origins is sure to keep me begging for sequels.
In summary: I loved, loved, loved this novel. It was just all shades of fantastic. Highly recommended to any fantasy lover.
This particular cover had on it a shining recommendation from George R.R. Martin himself, so that should tell you particularly how good it is. Because everyone knows that GRRM's books come from another Galaxy too. If you're a fan of Tyrion Lannister - you're probably going to like Locke Lamora too! (less)
In the seven kingdoms, a rare few people are born with a 'Grace'. A random special ability, that can be skill in combat, a magical touch with cooking,...moreIn the seven kingdoms, a rare few people are born with a 'Grace'. A random special ability, that can be skill in combat, a magical touch with cooking, mind-reading, etc. It's always easy to tell who is Graced, as from a young age when the grace sets in, that person always have two different coloured eyes.
Katsa is a young woman who is graced with killing. She's feared by many, and her ability is exploited by her uncle, the King of Middlun, who uses her to do all his dirty work. Katsa has a few close friends, the spy master Oll, a young lordling Giddon, and her cousin prince Raffin. Together they created the council of kingdoms; a secret vigilante group that go righting wrongs in the seven kingdoms.
We meet Katsa on her latest mission for the council, rescuing the kidnapped princ Tealiff, father to the current king of Lienid. During her rescue of Tealiff, Katsa crosses paths with Prince Po, his grandson, who is also Graced with fighting skill. At first they don't get along, but soon they have to work together to discover the real reason behind the kidnapping.
I was pleasantly suprised by this book, I wasn't expected to like it as much as I did. I'm not always keen on Young Adult novels, although I'm giving them more of a go these days. But this has to be one of the more passable YA I've read. At first the names are a great offput (I mean really? Prince Po?! - Thats the german word for 'bum' by the way - What was the author thinking?!), and the strong invincible super-powered, yet exploited and opressed young lady who yearns to be independent and never marry.. well that threatened to be a bit cliche, but the character was actually quite likeable in the end. I still think she had too much power, but at least she had weaknesses that the author wasn't afraid to show, and she wasn't entirely self-centred and shallow like some YA heroines.
She did have a little too much opression forced on her for realism tho. The way I see it, the Uncle should have been Either exploiting her for her abilities, OR trying to marry her off, but not both. Surely he loses control over her if she's married? Pick one method of opression for the heroin, but not both please. Other than that and the names, I have few real complaints.
At least one of the bad-guys was an interesting character, well, we didn't see a lot of his personality and motivations, he was clearly a bad guy, but his abilities were certainly interesting. It could have been more interesting to see him have more page time though, I would have liked to have known what his motivations were and whether he really thought he was doing wrong or not, but then, it might have got moe creepy and non YA suitable if the creepy bad guy were actually allowed to do and say more, hah.
I wished also that some of the other character had been padded out a bit more, Raffin and Giddon particularly, I didn't feel that they had enough personality separate from their interactions with Katsa. But I can't complain too much, then it wouldn't have been such a quick and easy read.
I wouldn't highly recommend it, but if you particularly like YA fantasy, then it's actually not bad.(less)
This is another of those books that is most commonly shelved as romance, but is actually a fantasy with some elements of romance in the story. I had t...moreThis is another of those books that is most commonly shelved as romance, but is actually a fantasy with some elements of romance in the story. I had this wrongly shelved as paranormal romance, which I guess I had picked up from other peoples labels and reviews. But as soon as I read the blurb in the shop, it was clear what it was actually about. which just shows you, don't judge a book by it's cover.
Yelena is a prisoner about to be executed for murder. But the Commander needs a new poison taster, and the law is that the job must be offered to one that is about to be killed. And so Valek, the Commanders adviser and spy-master, offers Yelena the position, and she accepts. Valek begins her training by feeding her the poison 'Butterfly Dust', for which she must then recieve an andidote every morning for the rest of her life. Thus securing her loyalty. Yelena's job puts her right in the middle of all the political intrigue, And if Yelena's job weren't dangerous enough, she begins to discover she may have magic abilities, in a country where magic is outlawed and punishable by death. All the while being haunted by traumatic memories of the past.
I thought the setting was very unusual for a fantasy novel, Ixia is a country that has recently been overtaken by a military regime. Each area of Ixia is ruled by a general, and all citizens wear uniforms and must carry paperwork. It's a tiny bit orwellian, But this is all still in a fantasy setting, which is a strange, but interesting new twist for the genre.
I'm fairly sure the book was supposed to be Young-Adult, but after reading it I'm not actually sure what age range I would recommend it for. Parts of the plot were a little easy reading to me, something that I could happily have read when I was 10-12 and in my 'point fantasy' stage. But then some parts, particularly the flash back scenes, would require much more emotional maturity.
The one mistake that I think the author made, was using certain items from real life in her fantasy setting. It wouldn't really have mattered, except one particular item was pivotal to the plot, and was supposed to be a mystery to the protagonist, but since it was taken directly from real life, and not invented for the fantasy setting.. it was no mystery to me as a reader, which was a bit of a let down.
Despite that one problem, and despite it being a young adult novel (which I don't often read), I think I'm definately going to continue to read the rest of the trilogy. Good thing too, since I already bought all 3 books together.
Presumably everyone here already knows what this one is about, consider how big the TV show is. Dexter is one of my absolute favourite TV shows. But I...morePresumably everyone here already knows what this one is about, consider how big the TV show is. Dexter is one of my absolute favourite TV shows. But I didn't decide to pick up the book 'til recently (after already having watched 6 seasons of the show). I wasn't in a hurry to read it, as most of the revewiers seem to be of the opinion that the books just aren't as good as the series. But I thought I'd fancy making my own opinion on it.
Spoiler note: my spoilers only apply if you HAVENT seen the tv series (season 1), if you HAVe seen it, feel free to read all...
Dexter works as a blood splatter analyst for the Miami Police department. He also happens to be a serial killer. But he follows a code given to him by his late father Harry (who was the only person ever to know Dexter's secret), which allows him to continue his secret life without getting caught, and the code also states that he only kills 'bad guys'. Basically he cleans up anyone that slips through the net of the judicial system.
In Darkly Dreaming Dexter the Miami police are investigating a series of particularly creepy murders. Dexter's sister Deborah really wants to be on the case, but is stuck on duty posing as a hooker. Deborah knows Dexter has a particularly good knack for figuring out homicide cases (but she never guesses why), So she gets Dexter to let her in on any of his 'hunches' so she can use the information to help her police career. Meanwhile Dexter gets the distinct impression that this particular killer is directing his crime scenes AT Dexter. It's a like a kind of creepy serial-killer love-notes that only Dexter can read. And he's not sure if he actually wants these cases solved.
If you've seen the tv show, it's basically the condensed plot of the first season. But there are notable differences. Dexter is a notably odd character, not that he isn't in the show, thats pretty much the appeal of him. And yet here, he's actually a little harder to relate to. He waxes poetic a lot, particularly about the moon, but only to himself. His outward character, whatever everyone else sees of him, is very easy-going and jovial, in fact he's always cracking jokes. But much too many smart-ass jokes. I mean really, maybe he'd do better fitting in if he just kept a bit quiet sometimes? But then I suppose its ridiculous of me to expect such a short novel to show many insights into a character that's I've seen be developed through 6 series of a television show. And of course Michael C Hall is such a phenomenal actor on the show, not suprising the original written character can't compete with him.
As I say, the book is fairly short compared to the series, there isn't much side plot to speak of. Dexter's relationship with his girlfriend Rita is included, and provides some interesting moments highlighting Dexter's strangeness of character. But it's only a brief part of a short novel.
(view spoiler)[There is absolutely no side plot with Deborah and Rudy. In fact there is no Rudy. The killer is aways a mysterious character until Dexter discovers his identity. Which kind of lessened the tension slightly. But presumably thats also to do with the fact I already knew that Rudy/Brian is Dexter's brother. Although an interesting point that cropped up is that in the novel Brian looks remarkably similar to Dexter (which causes complications the one time Brian is caught on security cameras), which is something they obviously didn't pull off in the series. (hide spoiler)]
I guess the main reason why I didn't really enjoy this novel is probably because I've seen the tv series, which kind of spoils the mystery. But now I'm pretty damn impressed with the production of the show, because they really have improved upon the novel so much. The show really is better than the book! But much kudos to Jeff Lindsay for the original concept, I'm sure it would have recieved 3 or 4 stars if I'd have read it first.
Don't think I'm going to bother reading the other novels. I don't have to, theres 2 more series of Dexter already in the contract! I can't wait. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
Elinor and Marianne Dashwood grew up in the family estate of Norwood, with their mother, father, and younger sister. When their father dies, the estat...moreElinor and Marianne Dashwood grew up in the family estate of Norwood, with their mother, father, and younger sister. When their father dies, the estate goes to their older half brother John, and his wife Fanny. Fanny makes sure they get very little money from John, and generally makes things difficult, so Mrs Dashwood and the 3 girls move away to a cottage near the estate of a friendly distant cousin Sir John Middleton. Sir John introduces them to many new people, including Colonel Brandon, a reserved gentleman who shows a fondness for Marianne. Elinor quietly mourns the loss of her relationship with Edward Ferrars (Fanny's brother), who she no longer hears from. And Marianne promptly falls head over heels for John Willoughby, the dashing young nephew of the middletons who is not quite a sensible choice in the end.
The book begins in typical Austen fashion, with a sort of quick recap of the story so far, then really begins just as the Dashwoods are moving away from Norwood. As such I never really felt Elinor's true feeling for Edward. It's all related as a past occurance, and between two somewhat shy characters it's hard to see any great feeling anyway. So that really doesn't have any great impact on where I hoped things were going for Elinor. Pride and Prejudice's Darcy and Elizabeth was subtle, but in it's own way momentous, not like this.
And Marianne is hard to like because she's fairly superficial.. not to say she's not intelligent, but she's not very sensible.. but then thats the point of the character. She's just difficult to relate to. I could see her attraction to Willoughby, but I couldn't agree with it, the Colonel was the more interesting prospect from the beginning.
The side characters are probably the most interesting in all this. Mrs Jennings is the mother-in-law of Sir John, she's a very friendly, and well-meaning person, but she says some really rude and socially unacceptable things sometimes. And Mr and Mrs Palmer are probably the most funny and entertaining. Mrs Palmer being the younger sister of Lady Middleton, is an extremely positive young lady, and Mr Palmer is really dour, and rude, but not in an unclever way. Their interactions were always funny to read. He never says anything well-meaning, but she takes it all as a joke. Probably the highlight of the book.
Overall, I think it was a fairly good read, but, not my favourite Austen. The main characters just didn't click with me. (less)
Dragon Keeper is Robin Hobb's eleventh book set in the Realms of the Elderlings, and the first in a new story arc set immediately after the events in...moreDragon Keeper is Robin Hobb's eleventh book set in the Realms of the Elderlings, and the first in a new story arc set immediately after the events in her Liveship Traders trilogy, but focusing on new characters.
After hundreds of years, the last serpents have finally made their migration up the rainwilds river, and with the help of the rainwilders, and the dragon tintaglia, they make their cocoons for the winter. But the new dragons that hatch out in summer are deformed, slow-witted, and unable to fend for themselves. The rainwilders are unwilling to continue to care for the dragons, and the dragons themselves yearn after ancestral memories of an old elderling city. So a mutual decision is soon reached that the dragons should be escorted upriver in search of the city, Kelsingra.
The novel mainly follows the three main characters, Thymara, Alise and Leftrin.
Thymara is a rainwilder who was born deformed, with scales and claws, (and would have been abandoned at birth if not for her father). Thymara feels a great kinship for the dragons, and is one of the few with an innate ability to understand their speech.
Alise, is the plain and studious daughter of a Bingtown Trader, pushed into marriage for the sake of financial security, by her somewhat unaffectionate parents. Her only love in life is the study of dragons and elderlings, and her great desire is to study the newly hatched dragons in person.
Leftrin, is captain of a liveship, a barge named Tarman. Who is the only ship cabable of pushing further up the shallow acidic rainwilds river.
The novel is interspersed by a series of communications between the birdkeepers (postal service) at Bingtown and Trehaug, which tells a cute little story but nothing momentous, but sort of serves to mark out the passage of time, as the novel passes through several years of time jumping to major events in each main character's time.
The liveship traders is my favourite of Robin Hobb's series, so I loved returning to the same world to hear the continuation of the dragons' story. And I am so eager for more details on the elderlings. But Robin Hobb is so determined to keep them mysterious, we recieve a few tantalising glimpses through Alise's study's and the dragon's remembrances, but nothing wholy new. Robin Hobb is such a tease, I guess I'm just going to have to keep reading the series to find out more.
I did love all the new characters. Thymara especially is fascinating, because she has so much in common with the new dragons because of her deformities, but I'm not sure she even sees things that way yet. She's born into such a harsh society that outcasts their deformed children, and kills the worst of them at birth. And yet she's so young and naive at first, she hasn't properly questioned this regime yet. I enjoyed seeing her conceptions of things change slightly as she talks with the older rain wilds outcasts.
Apart from the elderlings, I'm also curious about Leftrin's liveship Tarman, as he seems different to all other liveships, not just that he's a barge, but he doesn't seem to have a figurehead, just painted eyes on the front of the ship. And I'm so curious as to whether he will still prove to be alive and sentinent in the manner of the other live ships.
There was also a little 'cameo' appearance of my favourites from the liveship series, Althea and Brashen Trell, and their liveship Paragon, which I won't spoil by relating, but it was so good to see them again, like old friends!
I thought the novel progressed a little slowly, and I'm a little bit frustrated by it. but then I have a history of being frustrated with Robin Hobb's novels, no matter how much I love them. Often feeling like I'm struggling to pull more detail out of the story than Hobb is willing to write into it. But I did really like it, and I'm glad I've got the next one ready to read soon. I think this will prove to be another great series.(less)