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Theft of Swords (The Riyria Revelations, #1-2)
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Theft of Swords > ToS: Sell it to me

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message 1: by Ruth (new) - added it

Ruth | 1133 comments Ok, so I've started reading (in audiobook format) our March Madness winner, Theft of Swords. I didn't vote for it but I'm giving it a try.
I enjoyed the first chapter - it reminded me of Kings of the Wyld in a good way - and I'm always up for a story about snarky misfits.

However, I'm now 4 chapters in (at the part where (view spoiler) and I'm feeling... a bit meh about this book. It all just feels a bit over-familiar, much like all other fantasy books ever. Thieves, assassins, kings, dwarves, a tavern... seen it all before. There's nothing terribly wrong with it, but there also isn't any kind of 'Wow, that's a really cool magic system/world-building concept' which is what I really want from my fantasy.

So, those of you who voted for it, I want you to sell it to me. Tell me why I should keep reading. What awesomesauce will I miss if I Lem it? Is there an astounding plot twist just around the corner? Is the character development unmissable? Is the magic system amazing?

For reference, my favourite fantasy writers include Robin Hobb Brandon Sanderson and N.K. Jemisin


Ruth (tilltab) Ashworth | 1889 comments I'm feeling the same. Also only a few chapters in, and so far it is filed in my brain under the category 'enjoyable but...' One of those 'buts' is how unoriginal it is. I've read about these characters doing these things already in a number of other works. Then there was a description last night that utterly threw me out out of story. The story is enjoyable but almond shaped eyes!? Really. Wow, so exotic (read the last with sarcasm please). I voted for the book because it sounded fun and it is. I just hope as I read on, the enjoyable bits add up to more than all those butts. I mean buts.


Dara (cmdrdara) | 2702 comments I felt the same. I finished the first book (The Crown Conspiracy) and was very... blah about it. It's all medieval tropes but Sullivan doesn't have an interesting take on them. He's not doing anything unique with it so I was very bored. I lemmed ToS a little into the second story because it had a lot of red flags for my taste (you can read about it in my review if you're interested [it's spoiler tagged]).

A lot of people say things get better in later books but nothing about The Crown Conspiracy made me want to persevere to get there.


message 4: by Ruth (new) - added it

Ruth | 1133 comments Ruth (tilltab) Ashworth wrote: "I'm feeling the same. Also only a few chapters in, and so far it is filed in my brain under the category 'enjoyable but...' One of those 'buts' is how unoriginal it is...
almond shaped eyes!? Really. Wow, so exotic”


Yeah, that description made me roll my eyes (almond-shaped or otherwise)


message 5: by Ruth (new) - added it

Ruth | 1133 comments Dara wrote: "I felt the same. I finished the first book (The Crown Conspiracy) and was very... blah about it. It's all medieval tropes but Sullivan doesn't have an interesting take on them.."

The spoiler in your review is, uh, not making me want to read the second volume.

This isn’t selling it to me, people! Where’s the awesomesauce?

(Don’t say it’s in the later books. If I can’t get on with this one, I’m not going to read any of the later ones)


Trike | 8768 comments Maybe it’s just not for you.

I wasn’t triggered the way Dara was, which allowed me to continue on. The girl in question, Arista, becomes a badass heroine in her own right by the end, equal to Royce and Hadrian, as does one of the other female characters, Thrace. Ultimately the book is very much on the side of female empowerment, but the journey isn’t always pleasant.

In the book’s defense, nothing that happens is gratuitous, unlike Robin Hobb’s (apparent) puppy murder that was used simply as a cheap gimmick to shock the reader. Here, the things Arista experiences play directly into how she behaves later. (view spoiler)

For me, this is an example of exposing a character to trials and tribulations in order for that character to emerge stronger, whereas Hobb was merely employing shitty emotional manipulation.

That said, if you don’t like it, don’t read it. There are a bajillion other books out there.


Stephen Richter (stephenofllongbeach) | 1339 comments If you are not a big fan of the literary duo formula then it may not be for you. Dara quit on a story arc on a character whose path in the book is rather amazing. Give it until H&R gets to the village of the girl. If you still are not in to it, then it just is not for you.


Rick | 2866 comments No one cares if you read it or not.

Sorry, but we don't. Do what you want. This is very much a standard, by the numbers "thief and brigand get into adventures" story (I finished book 1 last night). It's what he wanted to write so it's not a case of author who has no imagination, he just felt like writing a comfortable stock fantasy story. If you don't feel like reading it... don't.


Ruth (tilltab) Ashworth | 1889 comments Rick wrote: "No one cares if you read it or not.

Sorry, but we don't. Do what you want."


I think that is a little unfair to Ruth. This isn't a 'should I lem it' thread. She is early in the book, disappointed by the beginning, and is looking for those who have read and enjoyed it to help her see what good things might be waiting should she choose to go on.


message 10: by Ruth (new) - added it

Ruth | 1133 comments ^^ what the other Ruth said. This book won the March Madness tournament, so I’d like to hear what people think is cool about it.


Christopher Preiman | 347 comments Actually Rick, many of us do care,that is sort of the point of talking about a book. If someone didn’t finish for some reason, that should be part of the conversation. Even if you’d prefer everyone either feel as you do or keep quiet.


message 12: by Rick (last edited Mar 31, 2019 06:30PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Rick | 2866 comments "Even if you’d prefer everyone either feel as you do or keep quiet."

Sigh... One day I'll have a discussion where people don't put words in my mouth or tell me what I really mean. Today is not that day.

Discussing the book isn't about selling it to someone who doesn't like it. Discussing the book is, well, talking about the book itself. It's good parts, its faults, etc. and the problem is that Ruth's read 4 chapters. We can't talk in any detail about the book without spoiling it. if she doesn't want to spend the time to at least finish book 1 why are we expected to spend the time to convince her (or anyone)?

On the book... This IS a very standard take on the "two adventurers get caught up in a plot that's more than it seems" book. It relies a lot on the reader to want to kind of turn off their mind and sink into a very typical story. Obviously it's easier if you can connect with and like the characters.

If you're looking for innovations and amazing magic systems, etc this isn't the book to look to. Jemisin does that much better, esp in building worlds that are very much not in the typical European fantasy mold and Sanderson does cool magic systems.

Frankly, this doesn't have a lot of magic (there IS magic in the world, it's just not used much in book 1 at least).

So, I don't know if you should continue or not. If a standard, pretty trope-ish book of this style doesn't appeal, no. It's a reasonably fun, light, easy read. But we're not you. You have to decide for yourself.


message 13: by John (Taloni) (new)

John (Taloni) Taloni (johntaloni) | 4073 comments FWIW I just read the opening scene and laughed my way through it. Excellent deconstruction of trope. Looking forward to what comes next.


Robert | 33 comments Just started reading it myself and it's giving me a real The Blade Itself vibe in the writing style which if it continues along that path I won't have any problems.


Ruth (tilltab) Ashworth | 1889 comments John (Taloni) wrote: "FWIW I just read the opening scene and laughed my way through it. Excellent deconstruction of trope. Looking forward to what comes next."

I ask out of genuine curiosity, what do trope you refer to and how was it deconstructed? For me the opening was on ground with a tad too many footprints and gave me my very first groan of the book. (view spoiler) I checked the publishing date because the book feels so dated and you can't blame a book for using a cliche if it wasn't a cliche at the time. I was surprised by how recent this book is, because it really does feel old. All that said, I am still enjoying the book and am curious enough to want to carry on. I just hope the cringey bits lessen once it reaches its stride.


Ruth (tilltab) Ashworth | 1889 comments Rick wrote: "
Sigh... One day I'll have a discussion where people don't put words in my mouth or tell me what I really mean."


When you speak agressively, others speak defensively. I've observed this a number of times in your conversations on here. This isn't a criticism, just something I've noticed. Do with that what you will.


message 17: by Ruth (new) - added it

Ruth | 1133 comments Rick wrote: "Discussing the book isn’t about selling the book to someone who doesn’t like it"

My “Sell it to me” line was intended as a springboard to discussion, with an emphasis on trying to get people who’ve previously read and enjoyed the book to tell me its good points - and although I didn’t specifically say so before, I’m happy for people to mention spoilers (behind tags).

It seems to have worked in getting the discussion going, albeit nobody has so far persuaded me that this book has the awesomesauce I’m looking for (which is fine, and as you say I now have to make up my own mind whether to continue or not). Ironically, even though you’re clearly not a fan of the way I asked the question, your own descriptions of the book have been really helpful to me, so thanks for that.


Richard Eyres (richardeyres) | 17 comments This book (to me) is a fairly safe and steady book. There wont be innovative world building/magic systems etc. He wrote it to please himself, and with his daughter in mind (who is dyslexic). Following is a link to his website - it in the third paragraph.
http://riyria.blogspot.com/p/about.html
I like a good Grimdark book as much as anyone, or a high fantasy mega series with a load of characters (Malazan, Wheel of Time etc). I think this fits inbetween. There are times when i just want to good old fashioned fantasy adventure. Like a buddy movie - where you know there is friction and issues but at the end they respect each other. This is like that for me, safe, enjoyable character/plot integrations.
If you don't like it, stop. Everyone is different, and not everyone will like this book.


message 19: by Rob, Roberator (last edited Apr 01, 2019 02:47AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rob (robzak) | 6885 comments Mod
So it's been a few years and too many Riyria books for me to recall too much about what I liked about The Crown Conspiracy to continue reading. I plan to start it this afternoon after work, so maybe that will jog my memory more. We'll see how it holds up on a reread.

It's fair to say the first book doesn't tread much new ground. I do recall LOVING the opening chapter/scene a lot.

I think I gave The Crown Conspiracy only 3 stars. I'm pretty sure I took a break to listen to something else before listening to Avempartha.

I recall liking Avempartha more than The Crown Conspiracy and deciding to pick up Rise of Empire eventually, although not right away.

Each book in the series got better and I absolutely loved Heir of Novron. That isn't to say, you have to read 2 more books to get to the good parts. If you're not feeling it, then you're not.

It could be that you're coming to this series too late. I've read a lot of books that have similar vibes since then, but I don't recall there being anything quite like it being published back then.

You already mentioned Kings of the Wyld. I like this series much better. You may not however. I found this series first. I will say that Kings of the Wyld is better than The Crown Conspiracy.

The biggest thing for me was that I found this series after gorging myself on dark, "gritty" fantasy: Song of Ice and Fire, First Law, Malazan Book of the Fallen, etc, etc.

So it was nice to have just a normal light adventure tale. Also at the time I hadn't read much in the way of thieves as protagonists.

The first few books don't lend themselves to a lot of complexity. There is a bigger story for those who enjoy the simpler tales enough to get to the end, and for me that's why these went from decent books to books I love and recommend.

That's true about several other series, that becomes harder for me to recommend to people because there is just so much out there and people's time is limited. I hope you like it more, but if not...there is always another book to read instead.


message 20: by Rob, Roberator (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rob (robzak) | 6885 comments Mod
Ruth (tilltab) Ashworth wrote: "I checked the publishing date because the book feels so dated and you can't blame a book for using a cliche if it wasn't a cliche at the time."

Which publishing date are you using? If you're Theft of Swords that was published by Orbit like 3 years after The Crown Conspiracy if I recall correctly.

I believe he wrote these books in the mid 2000s.


message 21: by Ruth (new) - added it

Ruth | 1133 comments Rob wrote: "So it's been a few years and too many Riyria books for me to recall too much about what I liked about The Crown Conspiracy to continue reading...
It could be that you're coming to this series too late. I've read a lot of books that have similar vibes since then, but I don't recall there being anything quite like it being published back then.”


Thanks Rob, a good summary.

I think you’re right and I’m coming to this book too late, having already read several other books with a similar feel- I mentioned Kings of the Wyld before, and it also reminds me of The Lies of Locke Lamora. It sounds like it’s simply not the book for me, unfortunately!


message 22: by Rob, Roberator (last edited Apr 01, 2019 03:39AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rob (robzak) | 6885 comments Mod
Yeah, I thought I read this before The Lies of Locke Lamora. Apparently I read it not long after. I guess after enjoying that I wanted another story about thieves.

I liked The Lies of Locke Lamora much better than Theft of Swords, but I still enjoyed this.

Also I could be wrong (I probably am) about what else had been published at the time. It more correct to say I wasn't aware of anything similar to this at the time I read it..

Seeing how wrong I was about I read this compared to The Lies of Locke Lamora, I'm sure my memory sucks..


message 23: by John (Nevets) (new)

John (Nevets) Nevets (nevets) | 1592 comments Rob wrote: "Seeing how wrong I was about I read this compared to The Lies of Locke Lamora, I'm sure my memory sucks.."

Join the club, isn’t it grand how are minds try and compensate and make sense of things when we don’t actually recall true facts. I’m sure it happens in the rest of my life too, but for some reason my poor memory seems to be proven wrong more on this forum then anywhere else. I’ve learned to just go with it, and occasionally try and double check things before I make too much of a fool of myself. And if someone questions it, assume they are right, unless you did double check your self.


Ruth (tilltab) Ashworth | 1889 comments Rob wrote: "Which publishing date are you using? If you're Theft of Swords that was published by Orbit like 3 years after The Crown Conspiracy if I recall correctly.

I believe he wrote these books in the mid 2000s."


The date I had was 2008, but this was giving me 80's/90's vibes. I was feeling a little like when we read Sword of Shannara, like it was fine for its time, but its time was not so long ago, so... Shrug.


message 25: by John (Taloni) (new)

John (Taloni) Taloni (johntaloni) | 4073 comments Ruth (tilltab) Ashworth wrote: "I ask out of genuine curiosity, what do trope you refer to and how was it deconstructed? "

Yeah, that's the one. But for me...

(view spoiler)


Ruth (tilltab) Ashworth | 1889 comments John (Taloni) wrote: "Ruth (tilltab) Ashworth wrote: "I ask out of genuine curiosity, what do trope you refer to and how was it deconstructed? "

Yeah, that's the one. But for me..."


Oh, okay! I hadn't read it like that, but then I tend to read more seriously (a reason the hitchhikers books don't really land for me) so that's probably why.


message 27: by Rob, Roberator (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rob (robzak) | 6885 comments Mod
Yeah, these early books aren't meant to be dark and serious. They are mainly intended as a reaction to how dark and serious fantasy had become.

Even the later books don't get that dark, although they do get more serious.

That's one of the reasons I think I like them so much.


Trike | 8768 comments John (Taloni) wrote: "Ruth (tilltab) Ashworth wrote: "I ask out of genuine curiosity, what do trope you refer to and how was it deconstructed? "

Yeah, that's the one. But for me...

I found it so over the top as to be ..."


I do like how the events of The Crown Conspiracy make Riyria famous and someone creates a play about it called, cleverly, “The Crown Conspiracy”, which manages to get nearly everything wrong.

Reminds me of the play “The Tragedy of Loki of Asgard” from Thor: Ragnarok: https://youtu.be/M2h8eM-GhGY


message 29: by Rob, Roberator (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rob (robzak) | 6885 comments Mod
Trike wrote: "I do like how the events of The Crown Conspiracy make Riyria famous and someone creates a play about it called, cleverly, “The Crown Conspiracy”, which manages to get nearly everything wrong.."

Yeah, that bit was a great callback to me. It also continues that trend with his prequel series First Empire

We discover that basically everything everyone believes is totally wrong!


Travis Foster (travismfoster) Richard wrote: " This is like that for me, safe, enjoyable character/plot integrations. "

I'm just four chapters in, but that's what I'm most enjoying about it so far. Sometimes I want an epic fantasy adventure that hits all the right notes just so instead of tweaking them. So far, this seems like that kind of narrative, though I'm looking forward to later books adding complexity.


message 31: by John (Taloni) (new)

John (Taloni) Taloni (johntaloni) | 4073 comments Still finding it humorous at about the 11% mark despite the more serious tone overall.
(view spoiler)


message 32: by Anne (new)

Anne Schüßler (anneschuessler) | 838 comments Unfortunately I'm with Ruth so far. I'm only in two chapters und will get going, but man am I struggling. There's this thing when story or background is explained through dialogue rather than action or description and it leads to very, very unrealistic dialogues and this happens in the second chapter all the time and it's driving me nuts. I agree that it is light and fluffy which will probably save it for me.


message 33: by Ruth (new) - added it

Ruth | 1133 comments Thanks for all the comments, everyone!

fwiw I have decided to persevere for the time being (probably I'll give it until the end of The Crown Conspiracy, then see if I want to move onto Avempartha) with my expectations calibrated to lightweight, fun fantasy without any big surprises.

I'm enjoying the humour and the banter between Hadrian and Royce, and the plot, while pretty predictable thus far, is at least moving along at a fair clip so I'm not getting bored.


message 34: by Rob, Roberator (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rob (robzak) | 6885 comments Mod
Yeah, the banter of Royce and Hadrian are what led me to give Avempartha a try, and that one led me try the next omnibus the next time I was in the mood for lightweight/fun fantasy.

I do hope you like it better if you give it a shot, but if you decide to stop with the first one, that's understandable too.

I'm a few hours into The Crown Conspiracy and I've been cringing at a few of the scenes. I do still love that opening scene and the narration though, so it's on pace for me to hit my original 3/3.5 star rating.

I don't plan to listen to Avempartha until AFTER I finish Holy Sister, but hopefully that is still a 4 star for me..


message 35: by Rick (last edited Apr 02, 2019 06:45PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Rick | 2866 comments Ruth - that's MORE than fair. The Crown Conspiracy won't, I think, hold surprises for you since it does tend to be trope-ish, and a savvy reader can easily spot things before they happen. But it's a reasonably fun, by the numbers story.

There are a few very big issues with the book (view spoiler) and for me it's a 3, maybe 3.5 star read, but worth the time I think as long as you're in the mood for what it is. If you want a more modern feeling or innovative story, this isn't it... but hey, we all have those comfy things we slip into when we feel like it. This is that in story form.


message 36: by Sheila Jean (last edited Apr 02, 2019 09:46AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Sheila Jean | 325 comments I read this a few (7?) years back, so I'm fuzzy on the specifics too. (I'll start my re-read (listen) as soon as I finish my current audio book.)

The main thing I loved about these books is the relationship and back and forth between Royce and Hadrian. Since I'm not a visualizer (or audio-lizer) I found their distinct voices and personalities really came through in the audio narration and brought it to life for me. I promoted the book for March Madness in general, but among RL friends and acquaintances, I've specifically recommended it to people looking for audio books.


terpkristin | 4185 comments Agree with the comments about the audiobooks. They're so good.

I can't say much that hasn't already been said. I enjoy deep fiction. I enjoy fluffy fiction. While this is certainly of the fluffier variety, it was quite entertaining and I'm looking forward to revisiting Ryira after I finish my current reads (so many books!). If you want something deeper (a la N.K. Jemison), maybe this isn't for you. For me, this is a great read when I'm in a funk and just want fun. Which has pretty much been all I've wanted lately.


message 38: by Erik (new) - rated it 4 stars

Erik Melin | 114 comments John (Taloni) wrote: "Ruth (tilltab) Ashworth wrote: "I ask out of genuine curiosity, what do trope you refer to and how was it deconstructed? "

Yeah, that's the one. But for me...

I found it so over the top as to be ..."


I hadn't previously thought of monty python reading this but now I feel like it will be unavoidable haha


message 39: by Iain (new)

Iain Bertram (iain_bertram) | 1416 comments OK, just finished the first half (Crown Conspiracy). This reminds me of Xena, daft fun adventures. Baddies with hearts of gold.

But the monologuing, dear lord, they do go on.


message 40: by Ruth (new) - added it

Ruth | 1133 comments Ok, so this morning I finished listening to The Crown Conspiracy and I've decided to call it quits there as it seems a suitable point. In the end I found it a fun, fast-paced read (listen) although I did find the plot pretty predictable - you mean it was the (view spoiler) behind the conspiracy all along?! Gasp! Who could have possibly seen that coming?!?

I'm not particularly bothered about continuing with the series so I think I will not read Avempartha - especially as, from what Dara describes above, some of the things which slightly bothered me about The Crown Conspiracy (ie the way the female characters are treated - I was disappointed when (view spoiler), are worse in the second volume.

One final thing of note - although several people commented that this book made a refreshing change from grimdark fantasy, towards the end it gets more bloody - I found the descriptions of (view spoiler) pretty gross.

Thanks for all the comments everyone, I look forward to seeing what other threads and discussions develop!


Travis Foster (travismfoster) I also just finished TCC and was disappointed by the same things. That early scene, with its casual description of (view spoiler) didn't help, nor did the repeated insistence that women's primary value lies mainly in their sexual appeal to men.


message 42: by Anne (new)

Anne Schüßler (anneschuessler) | 838 comments I hate to say this, but it reads like a book that has some good ideas which all would work fine in theory, but the execution lacks profoundly. Underwhelming female characters aside, it seems exactly like something a parent would write for their daughter. I will finish TCC, but I don't know if will read the second installment.


message 43: by Rick (last edited Apr 06, 2019 11:16AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Rick | 2866 comments Ruth - I think you're right. It's a fun, fast, tropey read that's easy to figure out if you have read any fantasy (and likely if you haven't)

About the next books... Dara's summary of the opening of Avempartha is a pretty drastic mis-reading of the events, I think.
(view spoiler)
Does they really threaten to sell her? Well... no. First off, that's not a threat to her. She's not present at the time. Second, I think you have to read this as banter. Remember, the two thieves snark back and forth. Royce tries to present a hard-assed face but has principles and a heart (as is shown earlier). IN the context of the conversation, the exchange to me feels far more like banter between them than a cold threat to sell her.

Why DO they take the job? You'll have to read the chapter.


message 44: by Dara (new) - rated it 2 stars

Dara (cmdrdara) | 2702 comments Rick wrote: "About the next books... Dara's summary of the opening of Avempartha is a pretty drastic mis-reading of the events, I think...."

I don't think I misread the events. I just had a very visceral, different reaction than other people.

And that's okay! There's a lot in that opening that doesn't jibe with me personally but there are plenty of other books for me to read. A lot of people apparently like the story and they should talk about what works for them. I hope others in the group read Theft of Swords and enjoy the heck out of it!


message 45: by Rick (new) - rated it 3 stars

Rick | 2866 comments To be clear, I can see why you reacted the way you did, but I wrote the above because I think your summary of the events isn't accurate and is putting off others from trying the book. If you read Royce's comments as serious, you're right. I don't - I read them in the bantering context that's been established not only by the first book but also with the context of the discussion a few pages earlier about the money.

As far as the "she's aesthetically acceptable when cleaned up' bit... who among us isn't? They don't disrespect her when she's dirty and downtrodden - they merely note that she's young and lovely when they see her the next day.

Given that this is all in the first 2 chapters, I'd simply say that people should read the chapters and do what they want.


message 46: by Ruth (new) - added it

Ruth | 1133 comments Dara wrote: "Rick wrote: "About the next books... Dara's summary of the opening of Avempartha is a pretty drastic mis-reading of the events, I think...."

I don't think I misread the events. I just had a very visceral, different reaction..."


Tbh based on this description I suspect I might have a similar reaction - I really dislike sexual violence (or the threat of it) used casually as a plot device, and so I think I'm best advised to quit while I'm ahead and not venture into Avempartha.


message 47: by John (Taloni) (last edited Apr 04, 2019 10:35AM) (new)

John (Taloni) Taloni (johntaloni) | 4073 comments Rick wrote: "summary of first section"

So, lots of good stuff in there, good debate, argued well...but for the sake of other readers who may not have gotten to that point yet, spoiler tags are your friend.

They go like this < spoiler > text < /spoiler >

Just take out the spaces.

(view spoiler)


message 48: by Stephen (last edited Apr 04, 2019 11:31AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Stephen Richter (stephenofllongbeach) | 1339 comments The two female characters undergo a remarkable arc (view spoiler) That said, just quit. No biggie. Last year I disliked all but 3 of the picks. Most just did not engage me as a reader, and I had other books I needed to get to.


message 49: by Rob, Roberator (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rob (robzak) | 6885 comments Mod
Rick, please put your analysis of book 2 in spoilers..you may have tried to keep it vague, but I think you get into too much detail.

If I hadn't read it already, I'd have felt like you were spoiling some of it..


message 50: by Cup (new)

Cup of Joe | 6 comments Hi folks! Long time lurker, thought I'd finally jump in.

I was looking forward to a nice light read, but I'm afraid I bounced off this one. That's okay - different strokes for different folks.

Liz Bourke (of TOR Blog) did a really great job of summarising a lot of my concerns : http://strangehorizons.com/non-fictio... . I think they echo some of Dara's and Ruth's points, but also pick up some of the things I didn't quite enjoy with the prose.

As a final point, Rick - folks can have different reasonable interpretations of a text without it being a "mischaracterisation".

Glad folks are enjoying this one and I'm looking forward to the next pick!


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