Not quite as good as American Gods but lighthearted and funny. Hilarious at points.
This book uses the same mythos as American Gods and is set in the...moreNot quite as good as American Gods but lighthearted and funny. Hilarious at points.
This book uses the same mythos as American Gods and is set in the same world/universe. There's not a ton of overlap though, and they can be read independently.
I liked this a lot, but I will admit to some frustration at a really boneheaded move by the main character. I even put the book down for close to two weeks but finally picked it back up and he redeemed himself. (less)
The world setting in this book was wonderful. I liked Ivy and Jinks, but I kept wanting to slap Rachel upside the head for acting like a brainless idi...moreThe world setting in this book was wonderful. I liked Ivy and Jinks, but I kept wanting to slap Rachel upside the head for acting like a brainless idiot. Plans are GOOD things. Really. I promise.(less)
The interesting bit about the schoolchildren being eaten, finding the stash of books and reading them, gathering...moreSince it isn't clear from the blurb...
The interesting bit about the schoolchildren being eaten, finding the stash of books and reading them, gathering/creating weapons, and actually fighting the monster that is eating the schoolchildren all happens before the story even begins. The first scene is her coming home from killing the monster.
It reads more like the 2nd book in a trilogy than it does a stand-alone novel. I actually put the book down and went to check online to make sure it wasn't the sequel to some other book.
Also, being a possessive caveman does NOT equal romance. Nor is it fun to have a heroine that faints all the time. (Ok, I'm exaggerating. It was only 3 times.) I was sorely tempted to go round up some feminists and camp out on Saintcrow's lawn.(less)
This is a re-read for me. I read it once many years ago, and it came up as a book-of-the-month for a group I want to participate in, so I figured it's...moreThis is a re-read for me. I read it once many years ago, and it came up as a book-of-the-month for a group I want to participate in, so I figured it's time for a re-read and see if my opinion has changed now that I'm a bit older.
First, Bradbury is MUCH better as a short fiction writer (IMO) than he is as a novel writer. He has a tendency to go on and on and on in his novels and he never really has time to do that in his short stories. And, more importantly, he's about as subtle as a sledgehammer which is great at giving a strong ending to a short story but ends up feeling like a jackhammer when it's in novel form.
All day today, I've been making a mental list of things I wanted to talk about in my review - is this book more about reading, is it more about the ability (desire?) to think critically, is it about censorship and government oppression?
And just before I started typing, I pulled up the table of contents in the e-book and realized my Kindle skipped an intro by Neil Gaiman by default. It's a fantastic intro and mentions practically everything I wanted to say and more, so instead of listening to me ramble on and on, just go look at the sample of the 60th anniversary edition and read it yourself.
One paragraph particularly stood out for me. Gaiman says "Ideas-written ideas-are special. They are the way we transmit our stories and our thoughts from one generation to the next. If we lose them, we lose our shared history. We lose much of what makes us human..."
This particular idea jumped out at me because through the last half of the novel, I was thinking (without having any prior knowledge of Gaiman's involvement with this edition) of American Gods and Gaiman's argument that television (and the Internet) has made culture more ephemeral - something that is changeable, that isn't universal, that doesn't last. And in my mind, that's part of what Bradbury is saying as well -- that the changes in our behavior that were made with the inception of television (not necessarily the TVs themselves, but the lack of socializing, the lack of stability, the decline of "community") also leads to the decline of our culture as a whole.
I find it interesting that two authors half a century apart could use such wildly different premises, ideas, and plots and eventually end up with the same kernel of truth.(less)
In the fairy tale kingdom, they have a type of magic called the Imperative, which leads princes to find damsels in distress...moreA nice, simple, cute story.
In the fairy tale kingdom, they have a type of magic called the Imperative, which leads princes to find damsels in distress, leads stepmothers to become wicked, causes princesses to wander aimlessly until their iron shoes wear out.
All stories are collected as histories, and scoured through for clues when sticky situations come into effect -- such as the one in this book where the prince DOESN'T show up to rescue the princess.(less)
This is the second book I've read by Saintcrow and they've both been bad. To be fair, though, this book would have had to be fantastic for me to give...moreThis is the second book I've read by Saintcrow and they've both been bad. To be fair, though, this book would have had to be fantastic for me to give it more than three stars. I'm only reading it because I bought both books at the same time.
The main character is much too perfect for my taste. And while I wouldn't quite call the watcher a "possessive caveman," isn't it creepy to be informed that this guy you just met will follow you around for the rest of your life to protect you, whether you like it or not?
However, the main character only fainted once. That's an improvement over The Demon's Librarian I suppose.(less)
Awful. Just a really, really bad combo of really heinous crimes and lots and lots of jokes...
And way too much talking -- pages at a time without hardl...moreAwful. Just a really, really bad combo of really heinous crimes and lots and lots of jokes...
And way too much talking -- pages at a time without hardly any exposition to break it up beyond the standard "she said"/"he said" labels.
As a side note -- the ereads edition I bought has plenty of editing errors where multiple paragraphs were run together with not even a space between two different people talking. I just peeked at the sample for the Kindle edition, and spotted one in the sample, so they obviously haven't corrected the issues yet.
I've had this book for a couple of years now, but I've put it off, afraid that it would be too reminiscent of McCaffery's Pern Series. There are plent...moreI've had this book for a couple of years now, but I've put it off, afraid that it would be too reminiscent of McCaffery's Pern Series. There are plenty of similarities - bonding with dragons straight out of the shell, the dragon riders being insulated from the normal society, dragons as a type of air force - but there's plenty of differences as well. It's a Regency setting versus a primitive fantastic setting, they're fighting other dragons versus fighting forces of nature, there's just a deep affection for the dragons rather than a telepathic/empathic connection. Also, the adult relationships seem more natural rather than being forced by the dragons' relationships. I was rather surprised by how much I liked this book. Even though I love dragons, I'm not a huge fan of novels about war, and between that and the Pern similarities, I was expecting to be bored, but instead I wanted to pick up the next one right that minute. Sadly, I didn't own the 2nd book yet, so it has to wait a couple of weeks. (less)
I may be doing this book a disservice by rating it, as the first half of the book was read piecemeal - a few pages or a chapter at a time on my phone...moreI may be doing this book a disservice by rating it, as the first half of the book was read piecemeal - a few pages or a chapter at a time on my phone when I had no other book with me. I'm sure the extremely slow pace of reading (8 months for half the book) might have contributed to the disinterest I felt for the characters.
Marla is violent, foul mouthed, self centered, rude, manipulative, and prone to thinking she's the center of the universe. She's such an anti-hero that I found myself cheering on her enemy Susan (who you don't even meet until the final chapter) as it seemed that anyone would be better at being in charge than her. Maybe it's because she's not in her city and I just couldn't see her management style in action, but I can't see ANYONE willing to take orders from her on a regular basis. A few hangers on like Rondeau? Sure. But competent, powerful people? Nope. I just don't see that at all.
I also didn't care for the way it starts in the middle of the action. As the book opens, Marla has already traveled to San Fransisco to try to find a magic artifact to help prevent Susan's spells. Especially with what we learn later on in the book about Susan's plans - it just doesn't make sense that she would travel so far. Marla's definitely not above violence, and she's quite talented and powerful. I just don't understand why she traveled so far for aid when she could have tried to confront Susan directly. Maybe starting a bit earlier - perhaps as she's learning of Susan's plot might make the whole trip San Fransisco logical instead of something for me to scratch my head over. (less)