This is one of those books that is just so awesome that I do not consider myself capable of adequately reviewing it, and yet I feel that I do a disserThis is one of those books that is just so awesome that I do not consider myself capable of adequately reviewing it, and yet I feel that I do a disservice to not write a review for a book I love this much. Thus, after reading this book for the second time, I am undertaking to write in no particular order five reasons why this is my favorite book ever.
1. Witty banter.
This book has some of the most amusing dialogue of any I have ever read, and I routinely have to set it down and just laugh over the clever comments and witty retorts.
2. Intricate, complex plotting.
I really enjoy all of the different plot threads involved in this trilogy. This is not one of those books where you pick it up, read the first five chapters, and know exactly how it all works out. Instead, the plot is well-crafted, surprising, and never drags. Plus...
3. The plot has a satisfying resolution.
This book is the final installment in the trilogy, and it adequately ties together all of the many plot threads from the preceding two books. Even if some things are not totally resolved, but are left up to the reader's imagination, no major plot thread is just dropped.
I am very impressed by the way that the author was intentional about crafting a good plot. One of the reasons that this book is so satisfying to read is that it not only ties together all of the major plot threads, but also includes in the climax all kinds of things which she hinted to in earlier books. This adds not only an extra element of surprise and excitement, but makes the whole journey just seem that much fuller and more complete.
4. The romance is actually quite good.
The love between Achan and Vrell is realistically portrayed, and because of that realism, I really enjoyed reading about. These were the first books involving romance which I ever read without feeling an element of disgust. Usually, I enjoy laughing and groaning and poking fun at romantic plots in the books I read, but this was totally different.
Even though the circumstantial aspects are wildly different than what would happen in everyday life, the fundamental emotions, thought processes, and interactions are all founded in reality, and thus are enjoyable to read.
5. Christian worldview.
I have read plenty of Christian fantasy books, and this stands out as the best of them all, for neither the character's relationships with God nor the supernatural involvement is cheesy or contrived. The entire book is written through the lens of a Christian worldview. This is not one of those books where you have some wise character come along and offer a few corny words every now and again about how the characters ought to be behaving. Instead, every single page is influenced by the author's worldview, and it is really refreshing to read a book that is not just "Inspirational fiction" but is deeply and intrinsically Christian.
Another thing which I really appreciated was the way that whenever Arman, the God character, spoke or was quoted, it was actual Scripture. The author applied true words of God to the fictional situation, instead of just coming up with something that sounded wise and inspirational. This makes all the difference in the world. It's not cheesy, because it's Scripture, and it avoids the trap of theological inaccuracy which too many well-meaning authors fall into when trying to write allegorical/Christian books.
Well, I guess that's it. I have no idea how to end this review, since it is not well organized and rather stream-of-consciousness. Even if it's kind of terrible, at least I can take satisfaction in the fact that I finally written a review for my favorite book....more
Prisoner of Night and Fog was my favorite book I read in 2014, and that's saying a lot, because I read two hundred and sixty. I loved the first novelPrisoner of Night and Fog was my favorite book I read in 2014, and that's saying a lot, because I read two hundred and sixty. I loved the first novel so much that this sequel had a lot to live up to, but even though it is different and in many ways not as compelling to me, the book still met my expectations and delivered in each of the areas where the first was so strong: characterization, realistic and meaningful romance, high suspense and tension, good dialogue, excellent descriptive prose, and more than anything, careful research and historical accuracy. The amount of careful research is astounding, and evokes the mood, tension, environment, and details of the time period remarkably well. I enjoyed recognizing things that I had learned from my own reading about World War Two, and kept reminding myself that many of the books I had read were specifically recommended by the author, who gives a bibliography of research titles at the end of both books.
I enjoyed this sequel very much, and admired how very real the characters and the surroundings seemed. I recently wrote a parody article about how to write YA fiction, mocking the genre, and as I wrote, I kept remembering Prisoner of Night and Fog as a major exception. This book is no different, avoiding genre stereotypes and offering a thoughtful, intelligent, powerful story. Even though it is fiction, it is framed with historical fact, and the heavy truth of it is overwhelming. I greatly enjoyed both books, and if I were to recommend my favorite WWII-related books to someone, these would be high on the list, despite the fact that they are "only" novels. They're just that good, and give a harrowing sense of time and place like little else I have ever read....more
Hands-down, this is my favorite picture book from childhood, even beating out "The Velveteen Rabbit". Before my nap-time, I always wanted my mom to reHands-down, this is my favorite picture book from childhood, even beating out "The Velveteen Rabbit". Before my nap-time, I always wanted my mom to read this... The fun rhyme scheme and lovely illustrations caught my interest, and I can still recite the whole book by heart. This is definitely a book I will read to my hypothetical children. ;)...more