Weird Fiction discussion

Pines (Wayward Pines, #1)
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2019 Book Discussion Archive > "Pines" Discuss Everything *Spoilers*

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message 1: by Dan (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan | 795 comments Let's use this topic once we finish the book. Or if you're only halfway through, but a plot point really amazes you and you want to discuss it in spoiler detail right now, this would be the topic too, I suppose.


Kateblue I just read Pines in one day. I stayed awake until 4 am reading it. Now I want to read the other two immediately, but I need to be reading for another group.

As the book went on, I decided it had to be either 1) not present day, or, 2) an experiment by aliens like To Your Scattered Bodies Go. Actually, the tone of the whole thing kind reminded of a cross between To Your Scattered Bodies Go and that Star Trek TOS episode where the people were totally controlled by a senescent computer but went nutty on various nights.


message 3: by Dan (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan | 795 comments It's good to know the book is so unputdownable! I bet you have company in going further with the series if you do now.


message 4: by Kateblue (last edited Apr 02, 2019 04:57PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kateblue I will be going further, I just have to read 4 or 5 books first :-)

Other books.


message 5: by Jim (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jim (jimmaclachlan) I also plan to get to this, but have several other books in progress at the moment. Maybe in a week.


message 6: by Jim (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jim (jimmaclachlan) I gave it a 4 star review here:
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

I have to say this was an amazing read. About halfway through, I thought I'd finally figured out what was going on, but I'd only guessed part of the answer & the story just kept getting better all the time until a really satisfying ending.


message 7: by Dan (last edited Apr 09, 2019 08:53PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan | 795 comments I'm so glad you enjoyed this book, Jim. Your and Kateblue's enthusiasm--neither of you seemed able to put the book down for long--has inspired me to try to hurry up and finish what I'm currently reading, Gate of Ivrel, in order to get to this book.


message 8: by Kateblue (last edited Apr 20, 2019 11:37AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kateblue Is anyone going to go on with the next 2 books?

If not, maybe I should change my next nomination for Welcome to the night vale to the second book of this trilogy, called Wayward


message 9: by Jim (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jim (jimmaclachlan) I don't think I'm going on to read the next books. This one was very enjoyable & I thought the ending was perfect. Yes, it's open-ended, but in a good way, not a cliff-hanger. I don't think more books would be an improvement for me.

I mentioned this elsewhere, but for me it was like Dune. I recommend it as a stand-alone even though Herbert originally included the second book in it. I think cutting it out was a great idea. I didn't think the next 2 added anything & I found the 4th impenetrable. GR friends (usually picked because we have similar reading tastes) disagree with me. Most of them love the books Frank wrote & some even like the rest. That's fine. For me, 'one & done' is the way to go with it.


message 10: by Kateblue (last edited Apr 20, 2019 06:48PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kateblue Ditto for me on Dune, but I want to find out what happens in Wayward Pines once our secret service man becomes "the man" Actually, I read a little bit of Wayward already, seems good


message 11: by Dan (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan | 795 comments As much as I'm enjoying Pines, my next Crouch book would probably be the collaboration Draculas.


message 12: by Dan (last edited Apr 27, 2019 08:36AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan | 795 comments I just finished Pines and was pleasantly surprised by how good it was. I couldn't give it five stars because besides being thoroughly entertaining it was frustrating. There were plot holes, or unbelievable improbabilities, and I thought the writer should have gone in directions other than the ones he chose. However, I still think the book an awesome achievement of suspense writing.

Two of the sources the author freely recognizes as inspiration are the TV series Twin Peaks and Lost. The author manages to build up the suspense found in Lost perfectly. So strong is the desire to discover the explanation that like Lost you just can't stop, but have to binge read. The author even manages to top Lost by eventually arriving at a more complete and satisfying explanation for the events.

Where he falls short in my opinion was in his failure to capture part of what made Twin Peaks so special: the small-townieness and depth of the characterizations. Crouch gives us the J. J. Abrams version of Twin Peaks instead, barely showing us the town and its denizens, because he has to race off at breakneck speed to the next plot point. Ethan Burke never stays in a scene long enough to break a character, any character, down and get to the bottom of anything. This was very frustrating. Not only does he fail to interrogate his enemies, he doesn't even properly question his one friend, Beverly.

This book is on the New Weird list I started. I'm not sure I agree it really belongs. In many ways it's not Weird enough. The final explanation is too pat for New Weird, which I appreciate on one hand, but find unsatisfying on the other. It's too straight up science fiction, ultimately, and too little horror.

I find myself in agreement with this writer on the TV series https://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/13/ar... but feel the same about the book. Still, the book gets four stars for its excitement and unputdownableness.


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