The worst part about doing reviews for books is when an author contacts you and ask that you review their book and you have to tell them you didn’t liThe worst part about doing reviews for books is when an author contacts you and ask that you review their book and you have to tell them you didn’t like it at all. I only managed to get about 1/3 of the way through this one before I put it down.
The book desperately needed a good editor. It uses some '&' symbols as intra-chapter breaks – this is non-standard English and I do not like it (But I am an arse, so do with that that as you will). It also has major flow issues and it feels very unfocused.
The science is hinky (maybe not wrong, but pretty close to wrong) – gene therapy is not a cure all for all diseases. If it is so aggressive it overwrites all pathogens how does it differentiate between dangerous organisms and our natural bacterial flora?
The main character, Stanley – I like him. Oddly though he has Asperger's he comes across as the least wooden and most believable person in the story. In fact the most unbelievable thing about Stanley is not Stanley but the fact that his home has the power infrastructure to run his experiments and the DNA sequencers he needs to create his Correction… AND he has somehow avoided being raided by the DEA, DOE, and the Local Police when his enormous power bills (usually indicating drug activity) send them huge red flags.
The villain is, at best, a caricature. He is kill-happy (I would have thought money and industrial espionage would have come first) and he and his cohorts are also weirdly specific product name droppers (Gulfstream G6, was that detail needed?). His hired killers are even worse (Shogun Assassin – Really? Because he is Japanese, or because he uses the traditional Shogunate-era shotgun. And Shadow Baha'i Corrector? What, was evil Evil Jehovah Witnesses already taken?)
As for the NSA's triumvirate, again more caricature than character. Offensive nicknames and writing a major character entirely in Vernacular (and I HATE that! Just say he has a heavy accent and write in plain PseudoTransLatin).
I wish I could have liked it. The idea is good, and as I said I like Stanley (though even someone with heavy autism can understand serendipity if it is explained to them and I think he would have sold his correction as a cancer cure, even with the flaw it has better odds for the terminal than... well death)....more
Interesting bits and pieces, but that is all they are – bits and pieces that add up to nothing. A nothing from a very, very disgruntled ex employee. IInteresting bits and pieces, but that is all they are – bits and pieces that add up to nothing. A nothing from a very, very disgruntled ex employee. It is an obvious hatchet job....more
Stephen King: "The Little Green God of Agony" ***** - Excellent.
Leah Bobet: "Stay" **** - Do love me a good Windigo yarn.
Simon Bestwick: "The Moraine"Stephen King: "The Little Green God of Agony" ***** - Excellent.
Leah Bobet: "Stay" **** - Do love me a good Windigo yarn.
Simon Bestwick: "The Moraine" **** - Nice.
Laird Barron: "Blackwood's Baby" ***** - Mr. Barron is quickly becoming one of my favorite horror writers.
David Nickle: "Looker" **** - Creepy cool.
Priya Sharma: "The Show" *** - Very good, but none of the characters are very personable - and having a sympathetic character in the mix helps with horror. Still sometimes bad things do happen to bad people.
Margo Lanagan: "Mulberry Boys" *** - Interesting, but it seem horrific to me... Then again I usually root for the Mad Scientists.
Brian Hodge: "Roots and All" **** - Again not all that horrific, but I liked that in the end he had to .... well no spoilers. I liked the end.
A.C. Wise: "Final Girl Theory" ** - Wild idea, but I just didn't enjoy it.
Livia Llewellyn: "Omphalos" *** - Solid story.
Simon Bestwick: "Dermot" ***** - Yes, in those circumstances I fear too many would make the same deal.
Alison Littlewood: "Black Feathers" ***½ - Good and creeps, but it touches a little too close to home.
Chet Williamson: "Final Verse" *** - Not bad, but kind of predictable IMOP.
Terry Lamsley: "In the Absence of Murdock" ***½ - Good. No idea why he disappeared when he did, but it was nice and creepy.
Glen Hirshberg: "You Become the Neighborhood" **** - Slow unfold, but the payoff is excellent.
John Langan: "In Paris, in the Mouth of Kronos" ***½ - Nice. It was a bit predictable, but I did like it.
Anna Taborska: "Little Pig" ****½ - Yep, that is horror.
Peter Straub: "The Ballad of Ballard and Sandrine" ** - Meh!...more
- “Some Desperado” by Joe Abercrombie - A Red Country story ***** - DAMN GOOD!
- “My Heart is Either Broken” by Megan Abbott ***** - Wow. Very, VERY Go- “Some Desperado” by Joe Abercrombie - A Red Country story ***** - DAMN GOOD!
- “My Heart is Either Broken” by Megan Abbott ***** - Wow. Very, VERY Good.
- “Nora’s Song” by Cecelia Holland *** - I DO NOT like historical fiction, but the story is well written.
- “The Hands That Are Not There” by Melinda Snodgrass **** - Great story, but the ending felt a little forced. IMOP the aliens should have killed him (that would be the logical thing to do), but if they had done that there would be no story. Also, I didn't really feel the menace from the dangerous woman (she felt more liked a miffed maven or a pissed-off pawn).
- “Bombshells” by Jim Butcher - A Harry Dresden story **** - Excellent, would have gotten a 5 save I cannot stand it when everyone is beautiful and brilliant and bad- arse (and hints at maybe death can be cheated... I REALLY HATE that).
- “Raisa Stepanova” by Carrie Vaughn **** - Great story.
- “Wrestling Jesus” by Joe R. Lansdale **** - My only complaint is that the dangerous woman of the story wasn't dangerous at all, and barely featured in the story - in fact she was just a sexual backdrop and motivator for the men. I found that kind of disappointing.
- “Neighbors” by Megan Lindholm *** - A good, solid story - mayhaps a little over-long.
- “I Know How to Pick ’Em” by Lawrence Block ** - Didn't really like this one. Well written, clever; just not my thing.
- “Shadows For Silence in the Forests of Hell” by Brandon Sanderson ***** - Excellent. I would love to have this as a RPG setting.
- “A Queen in Exile” by Sharon Kay Penman *** - Another Historical Fiction, also well written.
- “The Girl in the Mirror” by Lev Grossman - A Magicians story *** - Solid, if a bit Harry Potter-like.
- “Second Arabesque, Very Slowly” by Nancy Kress **** - Very, Very Good.
- “City Lazarus” by Diana Rowland **** - Nice!
- “Virgins” by Diana Gabaldon - An Outlander story ** - I have a bias against this series, so my opinion may be slanted - but I believe I would give it a 2 even if I didn't have this bias. The story was meandering, filled with beautiful sexy super geniuses, and the woman in question acted illogically on several points.
- “Hell Hath No Fury” by Sherilynn Kenyon **** - Felt like a good old fashioned Southern Ghost Story.
- “Pronouncing Doom” by S.M. Stirling - An Emberverse story *** - Good story, but a point off because all the technology that failed works on differing principles (and I HATE that people just put a blanket over all technologies without considering some might stop and others continue to work fine. Fire and water seem unaffected, but no steam power? It does not track)
- “Name the Beast” by Sam Sykes *** - Interesting. Nice to see humanity on the other side.
- “Caretakers” by Pat Cadigan *** - Solid story, but maybe a little longer than it needs to be.
- “Lies My Mother Told Me” by Caroline Spector - A Wild Cards story **** - I do love me a good Wild Cards Story, I just felt the ending didn't make a lot of sense from the bad guys perspective (that is for a group trying to control and manipulate Aces they had a piss-poor plan for delivering ultimatums... massively stupid IMOP)
- “The Princess and the Queen” by George R.R. Martin - A Song of Ice and Fire story ***** - Simply Faboo!
The Repairer of Reputations - ***** The Mask - ***** In the Court of the Dragon - ** (kind of forgettable) The Yellow Sign - **** The Demoiselle d'Ys - **The Repairer of Reputations - ***** The Mask - ***** In the Court of the Dragon - ** (kind of forgettable) The Yellow Sign - **** The Demoiselle d'Ys - *** The Prophets' Paradise - *** The Street of the Four Winds - **** The Street of the First Shell - *** (non-genre, but the last bit bumped it up to a good story... just) The Street of Our Lady of the Fields - **** (Love story - really good) Rue Barrée - *** (Love story, not bad)...more
The main reason it gets a 2 is the editing stunk. A good editing, standardizing the text, dealing with the non-standard English, making the cartoons clThe main reason it gets a 2 is the editing stunk. A good editing, standardizing the text, dealing with the non-standard English, making the cartoons clearer - it would have earned a solid 3. Some of the individual stories were very, very good.
Story Ratings: Dracula's Guest - *** (not bad... not great either) The Judges House - **** (I like a good rats in the walls story) The Squaw - *** (If thStory Ratings: Dracula's Guest - *** (not bad... not great either) The Judges House - **** (I like a good rats in the walls story) The Squaw - *** (If the cat had lived I would have given it a 4) The Secret of Growing Gold - ** (Poor copy of the Tell Tell Heart) The Gypsy Prophecy - ***(The Prophecy was true... and misinterpreted) The Coming of Abel Behenna - ** (Meh!) The Burial of the Rats - ** (Also Meh!) A Dream of Red Hands - *** (Not bad) Crooken Sands - ** (Another Meh!)
I picked it up for "The Horla", and i was a little disappointing in that story (it might deserve 3 stars, but it gets 2 because I was unhappy with it)I picked it up for "The Horla", and i was a little disappointing in that story (it might deserve 3 stars, but it gets 2 because I was unhappy with it). Overall I really enjoyed his work.
My ratings of each story: Mademoiselle Fifi - ***** An Affair of State - **** The Artists - **** The Horla - ** Miss Harriet - *** The Hole - *** Love - ** The Inn - **** A Family - ** Bellflower - **** Who Knows? - ***** The Devil - **** Epiphany - **** Simon's Papa - **** Waiter, a “Bock” - *** The Sequel to a divorce - *** The Mad Woman - *** In various Roles - **** The False Gems - *** Countess Satan - ** The Colonel's Ideas - **** Two Little Solderer's - *** Ghosts - **** Was it a dream? - *** The Diary of a Madman - ***** An Unfortunate Likeness - *** A Country Excursion - **
Long and dull, as many history books are. If you are interested in the history of history it might be worth perusing, or maybe if you want to write a sLong and dull, as many history books are. If you are interested in the history of history it might be worth perusing, or maybe if you want to write a story set in the period and would like to better grasp the ideas and prejudices of the day.
Even if you are not so inclined the you should read the intro/preface, written by a contemporary of Newton to the Queen by John Conduitt (Politician and relative of Newton) - It is as fine and wonderful example of Obsequious Narcissism as I have ever read. It is a must-read!
The information is overly simplistic, he relies far too much on 'Flatland' (you would be better off reading Flatland inI wanted to like it.
The information is overly simplistic, he relies far too much on 'Flatland' (you would be better off reading Flatland in fact), hes repetitive, the 'fiction' story is drivel, and I do not believe he can go more than three pages without mentioning God or Gods.
If you are interested in 4D objects and beings and you have no idea what those things are, then maybe this book would be okay... maybe, but I don't see how.
I suggest you PICK OVER this one as it deserves to be at the bottom of a CLIFF (Yes I am bad and I should be punished). ...more