I had never intended to read this book, but as many consider it to be James Potter 2.5, I decided I'd give it a go before going into book three of thaI had never intended to read this book, but as many consider it to be James Potter 2.5, I decided I'd give it a go before going into book three of that series. While I'm not entirely thrilled with the book, I am glad I read it. Centering on the character of Petra Morganstern, it follows Petra in the summer since book two of the James Potter series ended. Not "officially" part of the series - the author was able to charge for this book (a very meager cost of three dollars) that I was happy to pay for after all his work on the series as a whole.
While it does, in fact, have a lot to do with the Harry Potter universe, it is all very cleverly disguised. Magic, wands, and flying brooms are present - but specific spells are never mentioned. Hogwarts is always simply referred to as a school or magic school, canon characters are never listen with a last name, and no non-original characters make an appearance. Crafty. But effective.
As a whole I found the book to be a bit darker than the rest of the series - honestly a bit of a plus for me. But still there is something that, as good as he is, G. Norman Lippert lacks as an author. When you reach the end of a book, it makes it amazing and entirely worth while, but his plotting lacks a certain speed and intensity that many well written novels have. I noticed this in the first two James Potter books and it is apparent again here. For what is really a very good ending, the pacing leading up to that point is often stagnant and seemingly a bit pointless.
Still, once again, when I reached the end of the book I was glad I read it. While I do believe that one could easily skip this and go onto book three, I find this book important in the terms of character development for Petra. I'd recommend this book for that purpose, but also to donate a bit of money to the author for all his work. But outside of that - it's really not a necessary read....more
Do you remember being in grade school and ordering books from the Scholastic magazine once a month? Well I'd honestly forgotten all about it until ScoDo you remember being in grade school and ordering books from the Scholastic magazine once a month? Well I'd honestly forgotten all about it until Scott Westerfeld's "Uglies" flashed me back to that time. While I am an adult that does enjoy the YA genre, this read is written so simply that even teenagers should be offended that this is geared towards them. With a writing style that, at best, can be called simplistic, and a vocabulary that caps off at anything with more than six letters in it, I knew I was in some trouble at page one.
Tally is a 16 year old girl living in a world where you are born "Ugly". At 16, they give you an operation that makes you "Pretty", and your life really begins. There's a social divide here - with "Uglies", as they are called, living in...wait for it..."Uglyville", and the "Pretties" living in...wait for it... "New Pretty Town".
As an author your two jobs are to craft words, and use your imagination. The author succeeded in neither of these.
Despite an interesting premise, however simple of one it may be, the execution of this book was downright poor. The world crafted within, if you can even use that term, is never fully explored; details and imagery are pretty much given strictly on a need-to-know basis. The plot itself is incredibly by-the-numbers from start to finish. Insert love triangle here. Insert "plot twist" there. To the genre, and to any intelligent reader, it was downright insulting.
To add insult to injury, the book just wasn't that good. It was an easy read, for sure, and because of that it was quickly finished. But don't mistake my having read it fast for my actually being into the book. Still, I have read worse. But not by too much.
Overall - To call this book mediocre would be high praise. To say I'd recommend it would be lunacy. ...more
Having enjoyed the movie for years, I have no idea what took me so long to get around to reading this book but I'm certainly glad I did. For those thaHaving enjoyed the movie for years, I have no idea what took me so long to get around to reading this book but I'm certainly glad I did. For those that have seen the movie, you'll know the general premise of the novel but the book itself is quite different outside the basics. That being said, I often found myself with not much an idea of what was going to happen next - a plus in any book you read. Well paced and entirely interesting this book is, indeed, all it is cracked up to be.
Overall the characters are fairly well developed and they all maintain their characer quite well. Malcolm, while often times annoying in his self rightous speach, does raise many good points. Still, he tends to drone on for too long and speaks too scientifically for his point to really be made to those he is speaking to, or to the reader. As Chrichton has said himself, the character of Malcolm was basically a charicature of himself - and it doesn't take much of a stretch of the imagination to see that here.
The character of Lex, the eight year old granddaughter of the creative mind behind Jurassic Park, is quite possibly the singular most annoying character in any book I have ever read ever. While eight years old, she rather acts about three and outside of whining, saying she's hungry, and being a general pain she contributes absolutely nothing to the book. In contrast, her older brother (aged 11) seems to act very adult and does not seem his age either. All in all it's clear that Crichton has trouble writing such a young character.
In all it's the differences between the book and the movie that make the read so enjoyable. Characters that lived in the movie die here, and the opposite is true as well. There's no T-Rex chase, and a good majority of the books finale is entirely different from that of the film. In fact the note that it ended on makes the entire second novel a mystery to me for reasons that, if you've seen both films and then read this book, you'll entirely understand.
While it is indeed a fairly action packed book, I find the aspect of the dinosaurs perpetually after the humans to be the only real big stretch here. For example, with plenty of other dinosaurs to go after - the T-Rex repeatedly tries going after the humans time and time again.
Still, with only that and the horrible eight year old girl being my only complaints this was a very good book. As stated before, especially with the ending of this book I'm now very interested to read the second book and see how it compares to the movie. If you think you know all there is to know about Jurassic Park from the movie, the book will surprise you. It's one of the few times neither the book nor movie surpass its counterpart and for that both mediums should be applauded....more
It took me some time to really get into this. I thought nothing would ever compare to Harry Potter and, because of this, I went into the book very skeIt took me some time to really get into this. I thought nothing would ever compare to Harry Potter and, because of this, I went into the book very skeptically. Once the plot really started to get going though I found myself re-invested in the world that JK Rowling created but with an entirely new plot and characters. Things that happened early in the book come to great significance later - something that, to me, always means the author thought out the book from start to finish before s/he ever placed a pen to the paper.
I know there were some problems with the legality of this novel and, from what I understand, Rowling herself gave this the okay. I can completely understand why. While she herself wants to move on to different things, G. Norman Lippert does her mythical world complete justice. While the author's writing may be different, it is somewhat in the vein of JK Rowling, and the story itself could very easily be something the Rowling herself would have come up with.
We have an entire slew of new characters that are all very well written in their own right. The characters Lippert creates are well thought out and maintain their own personalities throughout the entire novel. The book also revisits some old friends that have personalities already so well defined by Rowling. While I'm not entirely sure how some of these characters would act as adults, and some of it seems a bit off, the author still stays true to the characters. Already established adults, the most stand out individual being Minerva McGonagall, he hits right on the head and there couldn't be an argument made.
There are a couple hickups I could do without - the character of Benjamin Franklyn, the presense of the American's (though it is done well, and I did like the character of Zane), and the entire concept of Technomancy (you'll learn about this should you read the book) - it really didn't effect my overall impression of the book as a whole. The most important bother was the mix-up of American/English slang - with the main American character saying "mate", and the English character saying "cool". But that's just my bit of nit-pick.
Much as the original series, this book has a well defined plot of its own - full of twists and turns the reader would never see coming. In fact, in comparing the plot of the first Harry Potter book to this first James Potter book, I would say that as a singular book I might prefer this one more. Perhaps even more importantly an overall story arch is losely set up - the makings of perhaps a truly brilliant overall series, seperate books aside.
If you can get over some of the hardcore facts of the Potter universe you know and let yourself get past the first half dozen chapters, you'll find that this book is a welcome "unofficial" sequel to the series, and I can only hope that it will be a full seven book series in its own right. To any Harry Potter fan, and even some non-fans, I couldn't recommend this book enough, and I look forward to continuing this series....which I'm literally going to do right this second......more