NO romantic relationship or indication thereof until the very end of the book.
Come to think of it, can't call it bromance either.
All of the above are perfect for me :p
Very good adventure/suspense.
My only disappointment, I never felt much for Kane. The character was pretty flat and never came to shine.
This is my second book in a row where excessive drinking leads to the "morning after" comedy of errors. I think I need a shelf for that.
The story is quite enjoyable, but the characters can be extremely frustrating at times, especially Will. He is whiny and he doesn't express himself very well outside his "mafia relations".
I don't understand why Present Tense is necessary in this book. I don't love it to begin with and failing to see how it supports the story or adds to it, I have no choice but to remove one star from my rating.
Final score 2.7
inspired "Sympathy for the Devil"
Finally getting to it now that Veronica is spending the summer learning Russian.
Ban the book; build the buzz.
Had it not been suppressed for forty years it wouldn't have become internationally famous. It's a bit of a mess. There's the love story of the Master, a writer, and Margarita. They're both inconveniently and unhappily married to other people, as apparently everyone was in the twenties. Don't worry, the useless-except-as-plot-devices spouses aren't in the book. The Master has written a moving novel about Pontius Pilate which no one will publish, a theme introduced early in the book: it is unacceptable to even consider that Jesus might have been a real person. This novel within the novel presents Pilate as being forced by law and politics to sentence Jesus to death, but far from washing his hands of the job, he strives to save him, to reduce his suffering, and to respect him after the crucifixion. I liked the Master's book and wouldn't have minded more of it.
Eventually the book settles down and concentrates on the suffering of the Master, but the first third of the book is devoted to satirizing Moscow's literary and theatrical (think vaudeville) world of the 20s. Not since Dante has a writer so indulged a desire to mock and punish. If these characters aren't real people I hope they're only thinly veiled ones, because otherwise they are too shallow to bother with. Their sins are mostly about getting a better apartment, which in an overcrowded urban environment is no sin at all.
Knowing that this was the inspiration for "Sympathy for the Devil" I had high hopes going in for that character. Jagged and Richards did more and did it better than Bulgakov. He doesn't get to do much, he's just a man who is too old for in unpleasant job, but too decent to leave the hard work to someone else. His staff are all less powerful and less competent, but they seem to derive some pleasure from the business of pointing out folly in humans. Not much fun, really, considering what one might do, but a bit in the end.
There is some real fun when we finally get to Margarita: girlfriend gives it all over to being a witch, but it turns out that being a witch is also not as much fun as you might think. Bulgakov 's damned are a parade even he finds to tedious to recount.
The book does have a happy ending, for some bleak Russian notion of "happy". No doubt it was fun to write, but the titular characters don't have much agency, and the structure deprives the book of any real momentum until half way through, so even though I did become familiar with Russian names, overall it wasn't very rewarding. I wanted to love it: it features an oversized talking black cat, but even those bits were joyless until the last sixty pages.
Maybe the Soviets only suppressed it for being slow, and dull, neither instructive nor entertaining. Or maybe I should quit trying to read Russian fiction, since I never end up liking it. Or both.
Edited to correct typo
A woman, with a foul temper and her own spaceship, ends up an escort for a stunned ambassador. Her perfect mate.
Leo runs her ship with precision and an attitude shaped by pain. Gathering an ambassador in stasis, she is surprised to find his ability to match her innermost desires, and he is surprised to find that she wants him in his own form and not the one she craves.
Ambassador Wikkio is a Beholder. Born to a race that can change to match any other species right down to venom or scales, he is an ideal representative for races who are skittish around strangers. Meeting Govern surprises him. He had not thought to meet the woman of his dreams when he woke from cold sleep and never had he imaged that he would enjoy his woman sharpening her wit on his hide.
The Gold Fairy brought them together, and now, she is determined to keep them that way.
Yea! Such a great cranky heroine (she has good reason) with a cool shapeshifting hero.
This heroine really needs and deserves love so this romance is particularly compelling.
We also get a ship with a mind of her own. Fun!