Getting my brother (12) to read is liking getting a cat to take a bath, getting a high-schooler to go to school, getting a cheerleader to go to computGetting my brother (12) to read is liking getting a cat to take a bath, getting a high-schooler to go to school, getting a cheerleader to go to computer club. All those really difficult things in life.
I read this series myself about a year or two ago, so when he needed a book to do for literature in his homeschool, I suggested that he pick this one and I'd do it with him.
He moaned and groaned and hated life, that he'd have to do something so awful as reading. I just shrugged and told him to suck it up and drive on.
We get started, and the first chapter goes just like I expected it to. We take turns reading out loud, 2 pages at a time, and each time his turn is over he hands the book to me like it burned him to touch it, let alone read it. But then, after we hit the end of the second chapter or so, I notice something: he starts to enjoy it. He starts sneaking in an extra page once in a while, 'accidentally' skipping my turn. Towards the end, he's reading 10, 20 pages in one sitting by himself (out loud, remember) as I sit and work on my knitting. (Because I can't just sit there, donchaknow. ^^). Now it's a fight to get him to stop reading long enough for us to discuss the questions.
When we finish the book and he takes the final test, he steals my copy away and reads it again. And again. And again. I begin to lose hope of ever recovering my book, but one day I find him his own set in the thrift store.
Maybe he'll actually go on to the next book in the series now. *laughs*
Anyways. I love this book. I love this series. A friend of mine actually suggested it to me once many, many years ago, but I never read it. For some reason the name stuck in my mind, though. Happy I am that it did, for now I've another great series I can read and reread. As does my brother. ^^...more
I was actually caught off guard by this book. I almost did not choose to read it - I came across it in a huge bag of books someone gave me and, were itI was actually caught off guard by this book. I almost did not choose to read it - I came across it in a huge bag of books someone gave me and, were it not for the poems on the back cover, most likely would have passed it on without a second glance. Something about it caught my attention, though.
The first few hundred pages were a bit of a slog...felt like the setup of a generic mystery type book. However, around page 400 or so I began to become truly interested in what was going on, and in fact finished the second half of the book in about 2 days. xD
However, just like the book had a long, somewhat dull introduction, after the exciting climax...it then dragged on for another 50 pages. Not that the events that happened during the conclusion were bad, just...it went on and on and the excitement the end of the 'trial' had brought seemed to fizzle out.
Overall the book was very good, I enjoyed it a great deal. Did I enjoy it enough to read through all 700 pages again, to keep such a large book on my already crammed shelves? No, I think not.
However, it is a good enough book that I will highly suggest it to anyone looking for an interesting, sometimes exciting thriller that's a little bit different from anything I've read before....more
Now, to be honest, most of Piers Anthony's books are strange - it's what I love about them. But they're strange in a good way,This book was...strange.
Now, to be honest, most of Piers Anthony's books are strange - it's what I love about them. But they're strange in a good way, while this was just...strange in a strange way.
I got this book from a free shelf at a thrift store. I was like 'Ooh, free Piers Anthony, yay!' Then I started reading it...and mostly just got confused.
I'm not sure if this is intended to be horror...thriller...erotica...romance... It sort of ended up a jumbled mess of nothing in particular.
Many people, I imagine, take offense at some of the subject matter delved into in the book. I actually found those scenes to be among the most interesting to read, to be honest.
What was more frustrating to me was the writing style.
I have to make an admission right here, though. There is something about Piers Anthony's writing style I don't like. I don't like how...abrupt his style tends to be, how it often feels more like a script than a book. I've grown up on books that have paragraphs of descriptive detail and prefer to focus on showing, rather than telling, in my own work.
However, for most of Piers Anthony's writings, it works, because the characters and situations are so compelling, so interesting, that it shows through without having to rely on a lot of description.
It does not do so in this book. Most of the characters fall very flat and lifeless. I found myself not caring as people died, because they didn't come across as 'people' in the book, just one sided characters being pushed into situations that didn't seem the least bit plausible.
And by plausible, I don't mean the 'firefly'. Actually, with all the lavish thought put into how the creature works and lives and hunts and feeds, the 'firefly' was, quite possibly, the most 'real' and interesting character in the book. Any time the creature showed up, I cheered, because I was fascinated by how it worked.
No, it is all the human interactions that come across to the reader as implausible, unbelievable. The way the characters talk to each other is stilted and awkward. Their physical responses seem forced and stiff and unnatural. The 'alien firefly' seems more human than the humans.
The erotic sections of the book were even more stiff (no pun intended. Really). The feeling was more coldly clinical than anything else, and the phrasings used more stilted still than the rest of the book.
To be entirely honest, there were a few times I flipped back to the cover of the book to doublecheck the author's name listed on it, but what I read feels more like sometime trying to write in Piers Anthony's style...but not succeeding. Or possibly succeeding too well in emulating parts of his style, without managing to keep any of the 'humanness' in his writing.
I don't...regret reading this book, I think. I'm not sure, to be honest. It was very long, very convoluted. There were, however, a few parts of the book I did enjoy reading, but they were few and far between.
I don't think I could recommend the book to anyone to read, though. Or rather, I don't think I would. If you can find it cheap or free, flip through it and think it looks vaguely interesting, well...I won't say that you shouldn't read it. But it's not a book I would suggest people actively seek out, either.