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Search tags: Emperor-Mollusk-versus-The-Sinister-Brain
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review 2015-09-29 01:45
Emperor Mollusk Versus the Sinister Brain (audiobook) by A. Lee Martinez, narrated by Scott Aiello
Emperor Mollusk Versus the Sinister Brain - A. Lee Martinez,Scott Aiello

Emperor Mollusk is a squishy super-intelligent cephalopod. He spends most of his time inside robotic bodies he built for himself, and he does not handle boredom well. He took over the planet Earth just because he could, but then found himself at a loss. His mind control turned all human beings into peaceful Emperor Mollusk fans, leaving the planet defenseless against outside attacks. Or Emperor Mollusk's inventions run amok. When you're constantly busy creating new things, it's easy to lose track of the occasional enraged genetically modified creature.

Mollusk is now a retired supervillain. He's not looking for forgiveness and doesn't particularly feel bad about what he did (except for maybe Saturn, that went badly). He just wants to continue inventing things and keep Earth as safe as possible until the humans have completely gotten over his mind control and are ready to take care of themselves again. Unfortunately, someone seems to be trying to kill him. Zala, a Venusian warrior who looks like a feathered reptile, becomes his reluctant bodyguard.

I don't even remember half of what happened in this book. I mean, there was a nearly indestructible pet ultrapede, pterodactyls that could shoot laser beams out of their eyes, an enormous rampaging Marie Curie robot, giant insects attacking Topeka, space battles, and more. It was confusing. And I enjoyed every minute of it.

On the one hand, I might have been better off reading this rather than listening to it. Any time my attention wandered even a little, something fantastical and confusing happened. It took me ages to realize that some scenes were actually flashbacks, and not Emperor Mollusk very quickly and briefly ditching Zala to go save some random Earth location from being destroyed (or at least from being destroyed even more). Scenes with Zala and Emperor Mollusk investigating and/or fleeing for their lives were interspersed with scenes of past Emperor Mollusk gradually realizing that being a supervillain wasn't quite so much fun anymore.

On the other hand, if I had read this rather than listened to it, I would have missed out on Scott Aiello's fabulous narration. His Emperor Mollusk was deliciously fun to listen to, and I laughed when he attempted to read the lipless aliens' dialogue without using his lips. He even did a great job with Zala – he used a softer voice for her, to indicate that she was female, but the result thankfully didn't sound breathy and weak, like some male narrators' voices for women do.

I was a little bummed when this book was put on sale shortly after I bought it at the full Audible membership price. However, it was worth it, and I definitely plan on listening to it again. The ending was a mess and incredibly confusing (perhaps purposely so), and some of the action scenes were oddly lacking in tension and emotion, but I didn't mind because the overall journey was so much fun.

 

(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)

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text 2015-09-13 07:42
So, this is currently on sale
Emperor Mollusk Versus the Sinister Brain - A. Lee Martinez

For less than half what I paid for it only a short while ago. Ouch.

 

Anyway, I liked it, and I definitely think this audiobook is worth $4.95.

 

On a related note, there appear to be a lot of sci-fi/fantasy books on sale at Audible right now. I wish I knew how long it'll last. And I would really love a section on Audible that's just "stuff that's currently on sale."

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text 2015-09-09 18:16
Reading progress update: I've listened 178 out of 441 minutes.
Emperor Mollusk Versus the Sinister Brain - A. Lee Martinez,Scott Aiello

“I’ll admit that much of the groundwork was laid by you, but it was I who had the will and the vision to complete what you were too spineless to dare!”

 

“You do realize that certain insults don’t translate into invertebrate culture?” I asked.

 

He scowled. “You get the idea.”

 

“I do. You’ve taken science you don’t understand and are now making terrible mistakes with it.”

 

Emperor Mollusk does disdain well.

 

Also, typing this stuff out made me realize how weirdly written some of the sentences are. "The groundwork was laid by you"?

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text 2015-09-08 23:22
Reading progress update: I've listened 95 out of 441 minutes.
Emperor Mollusk Versus the Sinister Brain - A. Lee Martinez,Scott Aiello

I keep getting interrupted while listening to this, and it's driving me crazy. I almost wish I had opted to read rather than listen to it, except the narrator is excellent.

 

You know all those wonderful Youtube videos of octopuses opening containers, escaping things, and generally being awesome? I keep thinking of them as I'm listening to this. Give them verbal skills and knowledge of advanced computing and genetic modification, and you'd probably have something a lot like Emperor Mollusk.

 

This book is so much fun. The only complaint I have is that Emperor Mollusk's life is so action-packed that it's occasionally confusing, at least in audio form. I let my attention wander for just a second, and suddenly Emperor Mollusk is saving Topeka from giant insects.

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text 2015-09-04 19:14
Reading progress update: I've listened 39 out of 441 minutes.
Emperor Mollusk Versus the Sinister Brain - A. Lee Martinez,Scott Aiello

I keep having to pause to go do stuff that requires more attention on my part, but I'm really enjoying this. So far there has been:

 

- an evil(er) clone

 

- "jet pack assassins"

 

- an ultrapede (like a centipede, only much larger and capable of biting through weaponry)

 

- a female character who looks like a feathered reptile

 

The relationship between Emperor Mollusk and Zala (the feathered reptile) reminds me a little of Artemis Fowl and Holly Short, only Emperor Mollusk doesn't even have a twinge of shame.

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