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Night Watch (Watch #1)
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Night Watch, by Sergei Lukyanenko

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Sophie (sawphie) | 2854 comments When I read Night Watch blurb, I immediately wanted to read it:

Others. They walk among us. Observing.

Set in contemporary Moscow, where shape shifters, vampires, and street-sorcerers linger in the shadows, Night Watch is the first book of the hyper-imaginative fantasy pentalogy from best-selling Russian author Sergei Lukyanenko.

This epic saga chronicles the eternal war of the “Others,” an ancient race of humans with supernatural powers who must swear allegiance to either the Dark or the Light. The agents of the Dark – the Night Watch – oversee nocturnal activity, while the agents of the Light keep watch over the day. For a thousand years both sides have maintained a precarious balance of power, but an ancient prophecy has decreed that a supreme Other will one day emerge, threatening to tip the scales. Now, that day has arrived. When a mid-level Night Watch agent named Anton stumbles upon a cursed young woman – an uninitiated Other with magnificent potential – both sides prepare for a battle that could lay waste to the entire city, possible the world. With language that throbs like darkly humorous hard-rock lyrics about blood and power, freedom and responsibility, Night Watch is a chilling, cutting-edge thriller, a pulse-pounding ride of fusion fiction that will leave you breathless for the next instalment.

I finished it last night and sadly it was just meh... I still gave it 3 stars because the story started really strong, I liked the world setting and the characters, but there are two major issues with this book. First, I don't really know how to say that in English (or in French for what matters), but I found the writing really choppy (can we say choppy for a writing style ?), not fluent, or pleasant to read. I may be that the translation is bad, because I saw some weird things (like translating "na zdrovia" to "to your health" instead of "cheers", which is a basic translator mistake), but I don't know.

Second, the story just jumps to all places, takes some shortcuts that the book present as intelligent (so what does it say about me if I don't understand them??), the story doesn't bring you with it, you have to struggle to stay afloat and follow it.

I'm sorry my brain isn't working well this morning, I can't find my words, but I hope you'll be able to follow me ;)

I read this book for week 51 (written in another language). I don't know yet if I'm going to continue with this series. Maybe trying another translation could improve my reading experience, we'll see...

Peter | -20 comments Aww....I'm sad you didn't enjoy this one. This series is one of my favourites! It's a very unique and interesting take on the supernatural world.

I will agree that the writing is choppy, but I chalk that up to mistakes in translation. I'm not sure what language you read it in, but there were definitely some spelling and grammatical errors, along with some odd phrasing throughout the book in the English version. I understood what the author was trying to convey despite the translation issues.

I've read all 5 of the series that have been translated to English. I think the author intentionally writes them so there isn't total clarity or understanding until the end. Each novel is split into three parts. Parts one and two appear to be completely isolated from each other, and then part three ties everything together at the end. This happens on a larger scale with the first three novels, with the first two appearing to be isolated, and then the third novel tying all three books together. The fourth and fifth books follow the same pattern of consisting of 3 parts, the third of which brings things together at the end.

Sophie (sawphie) | 2854 comments I agree with you, the story is unique and interesting, but I was too much put off by the writing. I read it in English, I may try it in French, although only reading the wikipedia page made me roll my eyes because the names sound so stupid.

I'm not dismissing it already, we'll see, maybe I'll be motivated to read the next books next year.

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