Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Epiphany of the Long Sun

Epiphany of the Long Sun (The Book of the Long Sun, #3-4)Epiphany of the Long Sun by Gene Wolfe

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A continuation of "The Book of the Long Sun", which I reviewed earlier, this continues the story of a priest become revolutionary.

Gene Wolfe can write character voices. There's a lot of dialogue in these books, and sometimes there's not a lot of tags, like "he said, she said". It's still obvious who's speaking. After a couple words, you know if it's the always polite(politeness so sharp it can be a weapon) Patera Silk, the slang-dealing thief Auk, or the constantly hemming and hedging Patera Remora.

For a book that is so quick to read, I was surprised at how it had me using more words in everyday life. Some books are hard, and they exercise your brain, stretching it to places where it stores those more rarely used words. This book was able to do that without bogging down in parenthetical phrases.

As a book driven mostly by dialogue, some people will be annoyed by some of the voices, the tendency to interrupt, or fail to explain fully a point. Also, the action often happens in the dialogue. Threatening words might connote a raised gun. Of course, if you read the first half, then of course you won't be bothered by those things, so check out the first couple of chapters of the first book before committing to these two books.

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Friday, September 16, 2011

The Gates

The GatesThe Gates by John Connolly

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Since I read "The Book of Lost Things" by this author, my wife saw this in the Library, and decided that I would like it. She read it first, and loved it. I read it second.

The author certainly has a theme: childhood lost. In the first it was because of a parent dying, this one because of divorce. The difference between the two books is in tone, and appeals to a bit different audience because of it. The Gates has a very light tone. The author uses the well known British humo(u)r to keep a story about Hell, demons, and the end of the world, appropriate to younger kids. The same humo(u)r might make you laugh out loud.

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Sunday, September 11, 2011

A Dance with Dragons

A Dance with Dragons (A Song of Ice and Fire, #5)A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A continuation of the dark, complicated, political, magical(not in the fairies and unicorns kind of way), conflicted, frustrating(why aren't the good guys winning? Why can't I tell which ones are the good guys? Why did that guy, who I spent the last 4 books following and rooting for die?), surprising(see previous), and satisfying(some of those bad guys are getting what's coming to them) series, recently made popular by a TV adaptation by HBO. I love it, but there are many people who will be turned off by the dark nature of the book. If you can, it's a great series to read. If you can't, don't force yourself. It's good, but no one "has" to read this series.

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