Not much a fan of the formatting/concept here, but I did enjoy the final section much more than the other three. I do agree with the top review on herNot much a fan of the formatting/concept here, but I did enjoy the final section much more than the other three. I do agree with the top review on here about how lovelace super favors one word lines. I mean, it makes for a short read but yeah. I also don't super get the formatting of the last line always in italics as the sort of closer for each one.
once upon a time, the princess rose from the ashes her dragon lovers made of her & crowned herself the mother-fucking queen of herself.
Stronger in parts than the first book in the series, weaker in others. It is wildly unfortunate that I do not care at all about Nico's plotline, whichStronger in parts than the first book in the series, weaker in others. It is wildly unfortunate that I do not care at all about Nico's plotline, which comes to the front even more in this book. ...more
Not quite as good as Let's Talk about Love, but certainly fonder. Really more 3.5 stars than three. Interesting to have it be from a fan perspective aNot quite as good as Let's Talk about Love, but certainly fonder. Really more 3.5 stars than three. Interesting to have it be from a fan perspective and get into the actual fandom of music as well, which many of these have completely glossed over....more
There were some lovely turns of phrases in the book, but ultimately a little too light to rate it anything higher than three stars. Not exactly lackinThere were some lovely turns of phrases in the book, but ultimately a little too light to rate it anything higher than three stars. Not exactly lacking, just not stunned by it either. It's a quick fast YA read and enjoyable enough to justify the time....more
More 3.5 than a full 4, but overall mostly liked it. It is not a mystery, it is certainly not a thriller. It's pretty standard fiction.
I did find myseMore 3.5 than a full 4, but overall mostly liked it. It is not a mystery, it is certainly not a thriller. It's pretty standard fiction.
I did find myself oddly moved by the end, which is why I feel like the 4 is warranted. When the threads finally really merge, there's a lot of very lovely prose.
"But surely we all carried some little piece of each other inside of us. So what did it matter, whether the memories belonging to her boy existed inside this other one? Why were we all hoarding love, stockpiling it, when it was all around us, moving in and out of us like the air, if only we could feel it?"...more
**spoiler alert** I spent a lot of the thirty hours I listened to this book crafting my epic Goodreads review, cataloging annoyances as they struck me**spoiler alert** I spent a lot of the thirty hours I listened to this book crafting my epic Goodreads review, cataloging annoyances as they struck me. Now that I have finished after two weeks forcing myself through this, I just don't have the energy really? But still, much like Harper, I must forge ahead.
So, a quick overview of how The Fireman truly, absolutely, did not work for me as a book:
- Here's problem one: I have read The Stand. I view The Stand as my all-time favorite of King's work, though now that I am older I truly understand it is certainly not a perfect book. Problem two: I read Station Eleven just ahead of this and loved it 100% and everything it did in a post-apocalyptic world and the spin it put on the genre. The Fireman has very little of the charm that either of these books had. The sheer number of references to The Stand is intensely frustrating. Hill took one of the worse elements of that book and tried to lovingly embrace it here, and all it prompted me to do is do is make the most ultimate, strangled sound of frustration when the big scene at the camp hit. Hill isn't just too over the top with references to his dad either. The Mary Poppins shit gets OLD. The Harry Potter stuff gets OLD. Yes, I get it, it's an easy shorthand, but man.
- Maybe if this book was half the length, I wouldn't have minded it so much? A stronger editor might have made this way tighter and harsher, because the slow build into dread just becomes an endless slog, especially between Jacob and the camp. By the time the third act rolls around, Hill finally manages to tighten it up, but the final twist here isn't exactly hard to spot coming. The concept of dragonscale is very neat, but it's not enough to sustain the length, or ultimately how little I cared about 95% of these characters, including Harper and John. (Jon? I don't know, I listened to the audiobook.) On the other hand, Renee was a shining bright spot for pretty much all of this book (pun not entirely intended).
- How many chapters end with the shitty little, "and that was the last thing he would say for two months" or "this was the last time Harper ever did a thing!" or some little nod to future plot events and WHY WHY oh MAN just what a tremendously annoying gimmick that you can maybe get away with a few times, not what felt like the end of every chapter for a significant portion of the book. There's one where it's basically, "That was the plan, until the hospital burned down" and then the next damn chapter starts with the hospital burning down. W H Y.
- Jacob. Like, yes, appreciate the nice guy turned ultimate evil sort of spin where it's this sort of bland white boy bad guy, and the plow and having that as his harbinger was a nice touch, but after a while it's just like, yes. We get it. Promise. Same goes for camp too, with the rocks and Carol and that entire plotline. Again, if it had been tightened up in editing, I think these would have been much stronger elements because they really should have worked.
- As for the audiobook, Kate Mulgrew was a great reader but by the end I mostly felt glad that she got to record it in Ireland and she got paid to do it and hopefully she had a lovely time? If nothing else, Kate Mulgrew had nothing to do with why I didn't like the book, though I think the pace of the audiobook certainly didn't help with how much I resented it. I could have read it a lot faster and it probably would have been a 2 star experience, but because it was an audiobook and I was forced into listening to it as a story, I think the flaws jumped more.
- I want to come back to this. There are just TOO many damn references that the book is choking on them. We care about The Stand because of the character work, and the plot ends up mostly working with some flaws but like, the concept is pretty cool and the things like the walk and Stu's journey back make up for the hand of god kinda shit. There is simply not enough quality original material here for this book to be a success for me. The first time Martha Quinn's name got dropped, I was so confused as to why this was happening.
- Harper's middle name of Francine and John asking if he can call her Frannie, Nick, Harold, just stop Joe Hill, please go take a nap.
Basically: hard pass on this book if you can. Go reread The Stand. Go read Station Eleven, which has real thought and character work and is also full of pop culture references but in a way that is a reimagining or at least attempts to use them in a new fashion. I feel like I will be one of the few to rate this one star who actually finished it rather than a DNF, but I truly wanted to give this book the benefit of the doubt. That was a giant, giant mistake....more