The third installment in Joel C Rosenberg's series almost a forgone conclusion. It is a typical read in the series but the elements of Christian eschaThe third installment in Joel C Rosenberg's series almost a forgone conclusion. It is a typical read in the series but the elements of Christian eschatology are wonderful to read. The woodenness and derivative ]Jack Ryan/Red Rabbit nature of the main character and his cast of American CIA military personnel was as expected and typically just too much. That being said the actions of new believers is what pulls the story along. I found myself looking up verses alongside characters and mostly skimming through the violence of the book. The most compelling part of the story was the internal struggles of newly converted Muslim leaders and the tie-ins of eschatology and the events of the imam.
The Imam is, again, an unwieldy farcical character of evil and extremism which makes his moments both predicable and jarring. Around pg 300, I was only surprised by him because an entire scene progressed without him killing a subordinate. One of the final scenes has the Imam in the presence of subordinates and a believer but no one seems to really know what to do with the Christian. The lead up to the moment and the internal struggles of the characters who are believers is amazing and truly the best part of the read.
They were the true heores of the book and constantly discussed and struggled to find answers to questions like: Whom do I tell? When do I speak of Christ to a non-believer? How much do I reveal? Will the Holy Spirit truly use me a as mouth piece for salvation? If anything, Rosenberg should really pull out these kinds of conversations and dialogues to build a manual on how to become a Missionary or Evangelist after becoming a Believer. ...more
I really wanted to read this novel. When I found out about the sequel, I couldn't wait to read the story. That being said, meh. I like Doctorow and moI really wanted to read this novel. When I found out about the sequel, I couldn't wait to read the story. That being said, meh. I like Doctorow and most of his views. His fear of a big brother government and a cyber-security world are spot on. The problem is that Marcus is just a dumb kid character. He never seems to put two and two together long enough to make a real change in his life. Ange is the best character in this novel and I wanted to know note about her this time. Because of all the baggage from his detention at the end of LB, Marcus is just too broken. He is weak and lost. I constantly wanted to scream at him and say, get the darknet out there and make it work for everybody. Tor isn't that complicated with the right help. It also felt like too much random stuff was happening to Marcus. The protest and riot. The goon squads and gyro copters. It was just too much to make it work because the randomness just didn't go together like it did in LB. In the end, it is a good read for those who like techno thriller. It's not great literature or his best work....more
James Rubart has found his place in the supernatural christian genre. This new series is in the same world as Rooms and The Chair but exist separatelyJames Rubart has found his place in the supernatural christian genre. This new series is in the same world as Rooms and The Chair but exist separately. What makes the book special is that the characters are asked to believe the amazing elements of the Bible that so many of us just glaze over and ignore. Teleporation,ESP, and Second sight. The main premise is an old one, Satan uses groups of his minions, demons, and fallen angles to manipulate our weakest places. However, a group of aggressive prayer warriors are learning how to ask the Holy Spirit for ways to battle these evils and personal sins. We are taken on a journey into the soul of five different people and the beginnings of a new type of quest. By using a middle aged Business woman, a hunky Rock star, College professor, and a Yoda like pop culture Christian hermit, we get to see the way the Spirit moves in an all encompassing way. This is a great origin story about faith and spiritual warfare. I'm really looking forward to what he has in-store for the Warriors Riding....more
**spoiler alert** Let's be honest and say the good before the bad. For the first book, not bad and it really speaks to the current YA market. The main**spoiler alert** Let's be honest and say the good before the bad. For the first book, not bad and it really speaks to the current YA market. The main character, Tris, is a heroine struggling with identity and personal clarity. Tris is an interesting antagonist in that she not perfect, she whines alot and is fairly self-centered throughout the book. Four, her love interest and trainer, is another emotionally crippled male side-kick who is believable to a point. Additionally, the premise of a divided culture rings true but lacks a clear explication for the more seasoned reader. The only information we are told is that at some point a disaster of epic proportions destroys the ecology and landscape of the American Midwest; thus a generation turns to "utopian" divisions to sustain am brittle peace. With all these elements, on the surface this looks and feels like a promising successor to The Hunger Games, but it is not.
The downfall of the book is in the writing. The sustainabilry of progressive conflicts is based largely on the teenage patchwork and their illogical impulses. Some would say, "they are after all teenagers," but they are paper thin characters. Random choices are made without explanation; whereas, other moments and choices are brooded over for an entire chapter. Another flaw is that it's resolution happens entirely too quickly when compared to the rest of the pacing of the book. It took almost 100 pgs for Tris to really get going, another 200 pgs for the major conflict to be revealed, and finely another 100 pgs for a third antagonist to be introduced. This was almost three stories in one book. ...more
**spoiler alert** In all, this is an excellent ending to an epic series. It is difficult to find a fitting end to all those we fall in love with but M**spoiler alert** In all, this is an excellent ending to an epic series. It is difficult to find a fitting end to all those we fall in love with but MS does a great stab at the tough end of it all.
The final installment concentrates on two storylines, the fall of Danu Talis and the Battle of Alcatraz. With the twins of legend now in the hands of Isis and Osiris we find out the real story. Now this is semi-predictable for anyone who has been reading. What is truly shocking, and I wish that I got to see more of this story unfold, is the real purpose of Virginia Dare. For someone who was placed as semi-minor antagonist, she really shines in this story. I would go so far to say that she is the namesake of the novel. Sadly, Sophie is relegated to bit of a dimwit in this novel. Her and Josh patch things up so quickly it was hard to believe, especially since Coatlicue had such a strong pull on him. In addition, Josh, taking the heavy-handed warrior role, was a bit hard to believe considering his weaknesses in the presence of Dee before this story. The complete absence of Sophie and Josh's parents int the past books made meeting them awkward and left a lot of the guess to the kids instead of the reader.
If you are happy to have wild and gruesome finale fights the payoff is given at Alcatraz. In fact, if it were not for that story's actions intertwined with the other, the Danu Talis story would have been too boring. I constantly found myself wanting to skip parts of the twins' story and get back to SF. That being said a lot of major characters die in this book and their deathsongs can come off a little overworked. Billy the Kid, Black Hawk, and Machiavelli were a real treat and play most comedy parts. One new Elder is introduced but doesn't do much beyond monologuing and then dies. And a new evil beast is here to scare you all, but just sounds ridiculous when explained by Flamel. I had to look it up but sure enough man-eating poisonous unicorns are actually a real myth.
Overall best book of the Second Codex, but not the best of the series. Good ending but a poorly written and semi-confusing epilogue by Marethyu left me disappointed. Wish I could get more of the adventurers of Virginia Dare and the Humans after the fall, but I guess that is what fan fiction is all about. ...more
So here is my problem with Ross Lawhead, he has some really big shoes to fill. Fantasy, especially the cross period type, is an exploding and popularSo here is my problem with Ross Lawhead, he has some really big shoes to fill. Fantasy, especially the cross period type, is an exploding and popular genre. If this is your first fantasy novel it will be a wonderful place to start, especially as a young reader. It compares to The Chronicles of Narnia, Nicholas Flamel's First Codex: The Alchemyst, The Magician, The Sorceress, and The Paradise War. However, that is the real problem. There are many other choices in the same vein and they tend to be better for the adult crowd. Young adults would love this book because the main characters relate their experiences in mythic England from their youth and how those travels affect them now as college age adults.
The chase scenes and mythos built around a "medieval" England are wonderful and spot-on but again the major sticking point is that the genre is crowded and may leave readers of fantasy a bit short. I felt like it was reaching for Tolkien John Ronald Reuel or even Joe Abercrombie but never really gets to feel of a full blown fantasy. It also borrows heavily from the work created by Lawhead's father but this is only in style the story is still unique and different. I would rate this a borrow not a buy for anyone interested.
(view spoiler)[It is a classic modern couple finds themselves accidentally a apart of a fantasy quest. It takes place in a mythic based medeival England and follwos the journey of a homeless young man, Daniel Tully, and an Oxford University student, Freya Reynolds. One of Freya's stongst mometns is early in the novel were she openly challenges a lectureer at Oxford about a missing history of England. She would make for a great starting point of analysis in the view of women in current fantasy literature. I really wanted to worry about their escape and success but it just falls short for me. (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Good quick read. For the expanse of ground he had to cover it was easy to see where he missed some things but the core concept was there. Fear the digGood quick read. For the expanse of ground he had to cover it was easy to see where he missed some things but the core concept was there. Fear the digital landscape, always. ...more
I came to this book, and the series, after watching the movie. That being said, how in the world did this get off the ground and transformed into a brI came to this book, and the series, after watching the movie. That being said, how in the world did this get off the ground and transformed into a brilliant screenplay. The book itself is long but comparable to Stoker length; however, in no way adds or builds on the mystic of vampirism. In the end it became a cumbersome task to finish the book and I only continued on to Lestat and Queen because I had no other gothic prose to read at the time. I do not recommend to anyone who enjoys good literature because this is simply vampire pulp. ...more