Ian Carmichael's Reviews > The Fatal Tree

The Fatal Tree by Stephen R. Lawhead
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it was ok

Disappointing from a writer of quality. The structure seemed stilted, characters largely uninteresting, plot and devices were imprecise mumbo-jumbo. That's what I wrote for #1 of the series, I kept going until I finished. I don't have the level of OCD required to comment on #2, #3 and #4. And I shouldn't have kept going through #5.
Unfortunately, I did. It was almost a "Mandrake gestures hypnotically" resolution to the story. Brief, vague and unsatsifying. In 5 volumes (~1500 pages!) I'd have thought a satisfying denouement could be made. But the story petered out unclearly at the end - indeed so unclearly that Lawhead himself wrote a 'what happened next' chapter and then a concluding essay.

Amongst the various things which set my teeth on edge, the most annoying to me was the author simply dumping in stuff which came from his own recent reading or viewing - one of the characters is Benedict Cumberbatch (yes, right). Another one is Thomas Young - as Lawhead refers to him (often!!) "The Last Man who Knew Everything" - which is the title of a very recent biography of the man. And Thomas Young is a real person - quite a character indeed, but he doesn't achieve much in the progress of the plot - save to be announced most times as "The Last Man who Knew Everything"! (Personally, I don't like real people to figure as apparently important people in fiction. I don't even like other fiction character to arrive on the set of a different author. So, I couldn't really engage Farmer's "Riverworld" series.)
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Reading Progress

February 21, 2015 – Shelved
Started Reading
February 22, 2015 – Finished Reading

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