So....ponderous. From back in the days when I insisted on finishing every book I started. Today I don't think I would make it past page 100...and thatSo....ponderous. From back in the days when I insisted on finishing every book I started. Today I don't think I would make it past page 100...and that's the good part of this snoozer!...more
I don't really want to rate this one at all...I'm tempted to give it only 1 star because I really didn't like it much at all. But I have a healthy resI don't really want to rate this one at all...I'm tempted to give it only 1 star because I really didn't like it much at all. But I have a healthy respect for the classics and can certainly appreciate the time in which this was written. Cooper offers a distinctive voice from that era, I feel sure, and so I award the novel with a lofty 2 stars.
The story was a good one, and if written today by a gifted author would make for a fine historical fiction novel. But the style is just a flat-out turn-off with extremely long passages that seemed to go nowhere (at least before my mind wandered off) as well as more than one strangely placed soliloquy that brutally interrupted the narrative flow. Ah well, I've had my eye on these "Leatherstocking Tales" for many years and have now finally fulfilled that promise to myself. Alas, when it comes to my grand scheme of reading adventures, it was not a treasure found but rather a trophy added. Consequently, I have no plans to pursue any more of Mr Cooper's work....more
I've read John Locke books before so knew sorta what to expect. This one really stumbled around randomly like Mr. Locke just started with an idea andI've read John Locke books before so knew sorta what to expect. This one really stumbled around randomly like Mr. Locke just started with an idea and then wrote down whatever came out. I felt like I wasted my time. ...more
I really loved the premise of this book. The main character is a marine archeologist and gathers a team of experts in response to a find that seems toI really loved the premise of this book. The main character is a marine archeologist and gathers a team of experts in response to a find that seems to lead toward the discovery of the lost Atlantis. And I knew if I liked the book there were at least three more by the same author and with the same protagonist. The author himself is a professor of archeology at Cambridge for crying out loud and has led numerous underwater excavations and written extensively on the topic. To top that off, my daughter is an archeology major with a keen interest in underwater archeology so I figured she could enjoy it after me. What could go wrong?
Well, this is the hazard of buying a book by its cover. If I had looked at the Amazon ratings for all four books by David Gibbons I would certainly have looked elsewhere as I have rarely seen so many negative reviews for one author. It's easy to see why. The book had such promise and fell soooo short. To begin with, Mr Gibbons may be a great professor but he hasn't a clue about what makes a quality novel. My most important criteria for a good read is characterization. Characters have to be multi-dimensional and go through changes (either positively or negatively) somehow within the course of the novel. The main three characters in this book started out perfect and ended up perfect. The first half of the book is devoted to the three of them showing off their knowledge to each other, sounding like professors in a classroom. I realize that there is a lot of information that the reader will have to know in order to make any sense of the events that come later, but Mr Gibbons goes way overboard here. Way too many facts that, while interesting on their own, were just not necessary for good story telling.
And the plot was simply not believable. In the space of about two days, the characters solved numerous archeological puzzles that have been around for eons, one discovery leading to another and among the three of them they always managed to have the expertise required to answer the puzzle before them. And then half way through the book we get the thriller part thrust upon us in the form of a sunken Russian nuclear submarine and assorted bad guys to interfere with the archeological parts of the novel. The main character gets shot and is in dire peril of losing his life but three pages later it's as if that never happened. We get to see him shooting down a helicopter with a gun (of course he happens to know the weak spots of that particular helicopter and can adjust to the 200 mile per hour winds so he knows just where to aim). Truly Mr Gibbons seems less comfortable with the action parts of the plot and it shows in it's choppy presentation. The "edge of your seat" thriller aspect of this novel was more like "why do I care what happens to these people?" As soon as he can he wraps up that portion of the story and the characters go back to their professorial discussions and one-upsmanship.
It's too bad. I think Mr Gibbons has potential as a writer but this one seems like yet another attempt to capitalize on the success of The DaVinci Code style of novel. Hopefully he can learn how to build suspense, hold his audience, and most importantly, create characters to which the reader can relate and come to care about. Unfortunately, given the ratings he has received on his other books, it seems he has not learned these lessons and thus will be limited to impulse buyers who are attracted to the cool covers of the books. ...more