Bauer is not a bad writer technically, but this story was boring as hell. I thought I could get my Stargate fix from this book but it was just tediousBauer is not a bad writer technically, but this story was boring as hell. I thought I could get my Stargate fix from this book but it was just tedious. Felt like maybe she was trying too hard or something. I don't know, it was just disappointing and I more or less skimmed the last third so I could be done with it....more
Sound the trumpets, I've finished Harry Potter! I didn't enjoy this last one as much as #6, which in the end turned out to be my favorite. The DeathlySound the trumpets, I've finished Harry Potter! I didn't enjoy this last one as much as #6, which in the end turned out to be my favorite. The Deathly Hallows had a lot of lulls and was unnecessarily dragged out (I'm guessing the only reason this story took a year to play out is because the other ones did). The explainathons didn't help much either. I have to wonder if Rowling left the door open for a spin-off starring the orphaned son of Tonks and Lupin. Orphans seem to be special in the Wizarding World. Anyway, I get why people who read this series when they were younger are so attached to it, but it didn't do as much for me at my age. I'm just happy I can now tick it off my list of "must-reads". Adieu Harry. You cheated me out of the tragic ending I was mistakenly led to expect and had hoped for, but adieu....more
From what I can remember of the previous books, I think this one was better than the second one. It was paced more quickly and there was a lot going oFrom what I can remember of the previous books, I think this one was better than the second one. It was paced more quickly and there was a lot going on. There was so much going on that at times it got a bit confusing. Dozens of characters in separate, ever-changing groups, always on the move, people dying and new characters being introduced almost until the end makes for a lot to keep track of.
The relationshippy parts in this series seem a bit packaged and shallow to me, kind of forced and even too easy in a way. And the way it wrapped up so neatly in the end was disappointing. I did enjoy Marcus as comic relief. And I was impressed at what Vale ended up doing in White Plains, not necessarily because I approve of his action but because it was unexpected in a YA novel. There was so much death and gore and violence you wouldn't think it appropriate for this genre but somehow I didn't feel much of the horror you might expect. The author attempted to have his characters feel something about this but did not succeed in transferring that feeling to this reader.
This series is clearly bound for movie adaptation à la Hunger Games and Divergent. And I think it might even be quite decent in that format. As for the books, they were a mostly enjoyable adventure but didn't delve as deep into the emotions and issues they raised as much as I would've liked. The trilogy focuses more on action than anything else.
3.75 stars. A good book, with a slowly unfolding mystery, humour, emotion and action, but I didn't really like what the "mystery" turned out to be, I3.75 stars. A good book, with a slowly unfolding mystery, humour, emotion and action, but I didn't really like what the "mystery" turned out to be, I kept hoping the characters' theory was wrong. And the ending wasn't very satisfactory, you never find out what happens. I know that's meant to be the point -- there's always "more than this". But I wish Ness would have given a bit more of the more!
It's hard to write much of a review without giving away the mystery. Enjoyable characters, lots of suspense, but some plausibility issues. This book doesn't top Ness' Chaos Walking Trilogy, but not much does ;) Definitely worth the read, as Ness is one of the best YA authors in the business. A lot of books in the genre are basically action/romance movie-like fluff, but Ness' stories are infused with meaning and real emotion....more
2.5 stars. Good idea, mediocre execution. The relationship between Michael and Patrick was the most well done part of this book. I liked Michael's ide2.5 stars. Good idea, mediocre execution. The relationship between Michael and Patrick was the most well done part of this book. I liked Michael's idea of inventing The Game to get himself and his brother through the zombie apocalypse, and how it eventually became a liability. Less well done were the actual characters. Michael himself was yet another protagonist with self-esteem issues and the usual habit of blaming himself for everything. The other characters, aside from Patrick, were one dimensional stereotypes and could have used a lot more meat on them. Patrick was more endearing. This book had a lot of little inconsistencies and implausibilities, even given the premise of zombies. It was frustrating at times, and the climax was rather too neat. Definitely not a book for nit-pickers or people who expect detailed world-building....more
Aarrggh a cliffhanger! Damn you Kelley Armstrong! *shakes fist*
This book reminded me a smidge of Graceling, set in a sort of fantastical kingdom, youAarrggh a cliffhanger! Damn you Kelley Armstrong! *shakes fist*
This book reminded me a smidge of Graceling, set in a sort of fantastical kingdom, young people with special powers. But it wasn't as good. It wasn't bad, it just didn't suck me in. I'm regretting not waiting until all three were published before beginning to read though. Why do I do that to myself?...more
I can't figure out why this YA trilogy isn't more popular. My library only ordered one copy of this book, and I was the only one who put it on hold. EI can't figure out why this YA trilogy isn't more popular. My library only ordered one copy of this book, and I was the only one who put it on hold. Even after having it for the entire 3 week loan period, there was still nobody waiting when I returned it. Sure, it's science fiction, not urban fantasy (no angels or vampires), but I also suspect this series wasn't marketed much. Which is a shame, because it is of much better quality than series like Hush Hush or The Lorien Legacies.
Not that The Jenna Fox Chronicles doesn't have its faults. My biggest problem with books 2 and 3 is how little things have changed in the 260 years Locke was trapped in a computer matrix, including Locke himself. He was basically in a sensory deprivation tank. He should either be irrevocably insane, or a zen master. Instead, he's (mentally, emotionally) the same average teenage boy he was when he was downloaded into the computer. I tried to figure out how this could be possible. I thought perhaps the matrix wouldn't allow for his brain patterns to change, but then how would he have created memories? And he definitely remembers being in the "box". So it really makes no sense that his personality didn't mature at all, after 260 years. And thus his relationship with the teenaged Raine is kind of creepy, much like, oh, a centuries-old vampire or angel falling in love with a teenager.
The world outside has changed a bit, but everybody still speaks with the exact same vocabulary as Locke. It is too easy for him to fit in with Raine and her friends - they should have all kinds of slang that Locke has never heard of, and vice versa. Pearson gives a couple of nods to this fact, and Locke almost gets caught, but really, he had it much easier than is realistic. If you time-travelled back to 1753, you'd stick out like a laser show in a sea of campfires. These implausibilities bothered me quite a bit while reading this series (though it wasn't as big an issue in The Adoration of Jenna Fox).
The plot of this third book was decent, a bit of an unlikely spy thriller, really. Pearson's writing is fluid, introspective and mature, but still highly accessible. I rolled my eyes a bit at Locke and Raine's "instalove", but at least it was a watered-down version, not immediately requited, and not the main focus of the plot. The political aspect of the series (citizens vs. non-pacts & bots) gets satisfactorily wrapped up by the end of this book, but it's a bit of an afterthought/info-dump.
I had a difficult time when I first picked up the book, the same week the Boston Marathon bombings occurred, and the manhunt was getting constant live news coverage. (This book is set in Boston and Locke travels to many locations mentioned in the news, including Copley Square where the bombs exploded). For this reason, I had to put the book aside for about a week. Even then, it was sometimes hard to concentrate on it. I have a hard time knowing whether that was my issue or if the story just wasn't that interesting to me. It's a decent finish to the trilogy, more like the second book than the first.
I really prefer the artwork done by Georges Jeanty over that of Karl Moline. The faces are so much better, for one thing. I don't know why it was neceI really prefer the artwork done by Georges Jeanty over that of Karl Moline. The faces are so much better, for one thing. I don't know why it was necessary for Buffy to have a homosexual experience, why not make it Xander? Or would male homosexuality be too off-putting. Yes, I'm being snarky, but also serious. ...more
I'd already read The Long Way Home and No Future for You, which makes up a large portion of this volume, but I re-read them here to remind myself of tI'd already read The Long Way Home and No Future for You, which makes up a large portion of this volume, but I re-read them here to remind myself of the story. I really like the art in these graphic novels. The story-telling isn't very linear, so it can be confusing, but if you pay attention you can figure it out. The character dialogue is right out of the show--you can almost hear the original actors' voices. Various plot lines get started in this first volume, it will be interesting to see what happens....more
I will have to blame my failing memory for my inability to really grasp the end of this book. I do remember enough to get what happened but not enoughI will have to blame my failing memory for my inability to really grasp the end of this book. I do remember enough to get what happened but not enough to think about the meaning of it. And I found the bouncing through time confusing as well. I found a good chunk of the book boring, especially Donald's chapters in the first section. Not as good as Wool, but I still plan on reading Dust in the near future....more
I was so excited when I got my advanced proof of this book in the mail, courtesy of a goodreads firstreads giveaway, I took a picture of it and postedI was so excited when I got my advanced proof of this book in the mail, courtesy of a goodreads firstreads giveaway, I took a picture of it and posted it on Facebook. Unfortunately my excitement didn't last long after I started reading it. I admit that it took me somewhere between 150 and 200 pages to finally realize I was approaching the book all wrong. I'm in the middle of Orson Scott Card's Ender's Saga, and this is a very different type of science fiction. Basically it's like Dirk Gently on Mars, but not as clever as a Douglas Adams book.
I've read quite a few of Sawyer's novels, and he has a very simple writing style in terms of sentence structure and--necessary science jargon notwithstanding--vocabulary. His characters are equally uncomplicated, which is a mild way of saying they often feel to me like hollow stereotypes. What saves Sawyer's stories for me has always been his speculative ideas: what if everybody in the world simultaneously experienced a few minutes of their own future (Flashforward)? What if the Internet became sentient (WWW trilogy)? What if we could visit a parallel universe where Neanderthals survived instead of Homo Sapiens (Neanderthal Parallax)? The speculative idea in this book was: what if the discovery of fossils on Mars led to a gold-rush-type scenario? In comparison, this idea just didn't cut the mustard with me. Sure, people could also transfer their consciousnesses into android bodies, but that's a pretty well-used idea. Sawyer probably knows this, so he didn't really bother exploring the implications of it here.
Instead we get a story about a bumbling private detective who gets mixed up in the lives of people trying to find a long-sought-after fossil deposit. I don't read P.I. novels, so I really don't know how Alex Lomax stacks up as a main character in that genre. He thinks he's a wit, even though his jokes consist mainly of cheesy-dad puns lame enough to make a seven-year-old roll his eyes. He kind of just fumbles around, sleeping with hot women and getting other people killed. Maybe that's a "gumshoe" genre convention too, I don't know.
The plot is actually a series of three plots in the sense that the story seems to be wrapping up twice before it actually does. The first time this happens is due to the fact that the first ten chapters of this book were originally a novella called Identity Theft. The second one happens when the main plot seems to have climaxed, but there is actually more to come.
To be perfectly honest, I found this book to be a series of silly antics and repetitive gunpoint stand-offs that had difficulty keeping my attention. Aside from Rory--who was endearing despite being somewhat of a stereotype--I really didn't care about the characters and what happened to them.
If you read purely for entertainment purposes and enjoy non-serious private detective novels, you might enjoy Red Planet Blues. I like to read books that make me think a little, and this one just didn't. So for me, it was disappointing.