Artemis Fowl minus the character development and the humor. Sky High minus the character development and the humor. War Games minus the character develo...moreArtemis Fowl minus the character development and the humor. Sky High minus the character development and the humor. War Games minus the character development and the humor. ...I'm sensing a trend.
I just gave up. It was an entertaining setup that got repetitive and was clearly too impressed with its own ideas. No plot, no action (rising or otherwise), and no characters I cared enough about to lift the weight of the next page.
Having said all that, the inside of the cover is fabulous. Might be worth buying for that alone. Just don't try to read the rest of the book.(less)
I'm assured that this book must be brilliant just because it's by Butler. No one who assures me of this has actually read it, however.
It may be true....moreI'm assured that this book must be brilliant just because it's by Butler. No one who assures me of this has actually read it, however.
It may be true. I couldn't finish it because I couldn't get past the idea of a 10-year-old-looking girl (12? 8? whatever) vampire's somewhat explicitly described sex life being the major plot of the book. Just not my thing. I gave up when she moved into her father's compound and his first discussion was about what people she would bring in to sleep with her. Nothing up until there indicated it might change; maybe it does.
Many great ideas, strong writing, intriguing plotline, and other goodness abound, but I'll skip the thinly-veiled kiddie porn. It may be brilliant, but I have other books to read.(less)
Sadly, this book is probably really fun. The conceit--an alternate world where Aztec ("Aztek" in the book) magic not only repulsed the Spaniards but l...moreSadly, this book is probably really fun. The conceit--an alternate world where Aztec ("Aztek" in the book) magic not only repulsed the Spaniards but led to Aztec world domination--coupled with a world-spanning plot bringing our protag back and forth to our world (where he works at a meat-packing plant killing cattle all day) sounds like great fun.
Unfortunately, someone convinced the author that telling the Aztek part of the story--which is the bulk of the story, at least as far as I got--in four- to seven-page paragraphs with no clear cues to the reader as to pacing or thought train (and no way to bookmark!) was a good idea. Clearly, the editor fell down on the job; it was his or her job, and the job of the members of the writers' workshop and the publications that printed portions of the book before it came out, all thanked in the frontmatter, to talk Sesshu Foster down from trying to be James Joyce at the expense of helping readers experience his or her world.
The writing in those unreadable blocks isn't bad. The characters are developed slowly, if at all, but this isn't a character-driven story. Or plot-driven, for that matter. The frontmatter also haughtily suggests that readers looking for a plot should go elsewhere; clearly they don't deserve Foster's vision. But auctorial excess is both one of the prices and one of the rewards of reading. The milieu story is a good read. I especially find myself wondering how the relationship between the two worlds--and their separate kinds of sacrifices--would pan out.
Unfortunately, I don't have the time or the energy to read the rest. I don't want to fight a book to enjoy it. And unlike Joyce, the words themselves don't transport me sufficiently to draw me along.
I'm glad I saw an in-store employee recommendation for this book and I want to see another by Foster, but I won't buy it until I've spent some time with it in the store. I regret wasting enough time that I'm simply teased by it but I don't resent the shelf space I'll give it.
Clearly I'm in the minority here, so the problem may well lie with me. I grew up watching MASH; I saw Stripes and Sgt Benj...more1 star. Couldn't finish it.
Clearly I'm in the minority here, so the problem may well lie with me. I grew up watching MASH; I saw Stripes and Sgt Benjamin in the theatres. National Lampoon and John Hughes gave me my childhood heroes.
Yossarian just comes across as a stuck-up whiner and I couldn't find anything funny in the first hundred pages. All the humor has been done later, better, and clearly-derivitively by other humorists. Robert Anton Wilson, Robert Altman, Alan Alda, Harold Ramis, etc.
Catch-22 is clearly the original that defined the modern "the army relies on cognitive dissonance and common sense locks it up" genre, but like most genres, the original seems oddly strident and naive compared to the better of the imitators.
Read it in junior hight or give it a miss, I think. The quotes from it are funny--let other people surprise and entertain you with them.(less)