I received a copy of this book for free, sent by the publisher to my now-defunct Waldenbooks store. Our store closed before the book was released, soI received a copy of this book for free, sent by the publisher to my now-defunct Waldenbooks store. Our store closed before the book was released, so I didn't read the book as quickly as I might have done if I was going to recommend it to our customers.
This book will have a wide audience. Many people will love it. If I were still working in a bookstore, I would recommend it highly.
I started reading the book after 10 p.m. last night, and I had to force myself to go to sleep at 1 a.m. This morning, I returned and finished the book before noon. Sarah Blake's writing was compelling. As her characters lived their lives across the page, I wanted to "pay attention" (as Frankie Bard instructs her listening audience).
Despite how compelling this book was, it was also limited by its historical moment, something that I found very frustrating. It takes place during 1940-41. I wanted more from this book, but that's perhaps the problem. Sometimes, all we can see is our small participation in world-historical events. ...more
**spoiler alert** I wanted to like this book. Truly, I did. However, I could never seem to enjoy it.
The first problem is the sheer number of viewpoint**spoiler alert** I wanted to like this book. Truly, I did. However, I could never seem to enjoy it.
The first problem is the sheer number of viewpoint characters. The book is written in third person omniscient, but sections of the book are clearly from the viewpoint of certain characters. This becomes clear, in part, because we're only really privy to the thoughts of one character at a time. We see through the eyes of:
the pilot a vampire the doctor the elderly male neighbor the love interest the nurse another vampire and a fairy
For a book that's exactly 300 pages, this seems a bit excessive.
It's difficult to understand just what the two lovers see in each other. I had a problem with their relationship and the coarseness of the language used to describe it. I'm fine with British slang from the forties; that helps to sell the setting of the novel. Calling a condom a "rubber raincoat" in that sense is probably accurate. However, referring to the "fur of her pussy" (160) and his "beautiful cock" (161) left me feeling dirty. Seriously.
Finally, the plot never really came together. In part because of all of the viewpoint switching, it was difficult to tell if this was supposed to a paranormal comedy/romance or some kind of a paranormal drama with sex scenes. (Badly written sex scenes.)
I won't be reading the other books in this series....more
I have to admit that I did not like this book. Mr. Ford is a decent writer, and while he did research 1942 fairly exOriginal review posted: Mar 19, 09
I have to admit that I did not like this book. Mr. Ford is a decent writer, and while he did research 1942 fairly extensively, he did a crappy job portraying 1986. I was alive in '86. I was ten, in fact. While my memory of the time is going to be different than that of a 50 year old character, I wound up being very tired of the repeated anachronisms. In one paragraph--on page four of the book, I believe--the narrator tells the readers that the main character's son is seeing a grief counselor and participating in an Internet support group. In 1986, that sort of thing would have been highly unlikely. Further, in that same paragraph, he tells us the main character's deceased wife is buried in the same cemetary with Bruce and Brandon Lee--and this is seven years before Brandon's death.
I'm not the kind of reader that gets easily annoyed by poor detail editing--but I am annoyed when sloppy research (or a failure to do any sort of research) leads to misrepresentations of the setting. I found this book to be very sloppy indeed.
Edit posted: April 21, 2013 After years of getting comments and feedback on this review, I will take the time to edit it for two important details.
1. Many of the errors that I found irritating were fixed in the paperback edition of the book. I would argue that this means that others also found the errors irritating that they were, indeed, errors.
2. Ford replies to the internet issue as one of his FAQ replies on his website. He states:
"I'm afraid I have to reveal just how geeky I truly am. I was on Compuserve in 1984, with an old coupler modem like you saw in the movie Wargames. Back when you had to pay $100 to sign up and were charged by the hour. Just because most people weren't online then, doesn't mean no one was. Just the few, the proud, the computer geeks..."