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Search tags: kai-erik
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review 2018-06-18 09:16
The Lumberjack- Erik Martin Willén

    Willén, in his first departure from sf space adventure/opera, has written a present-day thriller set in a generic northern forest reserve territory of the USA. Once begun the book is hard to put down, as one is driven on by the pace and tension in the story. The character elements of the evil antagonist bound along the edge of implausibility, on a tightrope between impossible and just about conceavible human physicality. In contrast, the rest of the cast of good, bad and pretty are within a more normal range of observable humanity. The plot is just about conceivable, except for the behaviour of a pack of wolves. We note that the author is Scandinavian, so of a population that has been responsible, more than any other, for demonising the wolf. The author also seems keen to exaggerate the danger from the cougar, or mountain lion as many Americans choose to call the creature. Both the cougar and wolf can on rare occasions be a genuine threat to even uninjured, but isolated, humans, especially if an animal feels cornered. But neither is exactly the danger to man in the way that brown bears are. The wild life, non-human and human is extraordinarily dangerous in this neck of the woods. The book is certainly both great entertainment and the provider of a good adrenaline rush. Anyway, for the cause, thriller writers have never been frightened to claim that some maligned animal or other is almost as dangerous a predator of humans as is another human.

    The idea of the eco-warrior, that so loves nature that he would rather see the devastation of mankind than nature is certainly not new. As our greedy species slowly destroys the planet on which we live, there will be many more examples not just in fiction but in our real lives. I have a great deal of sympathy for the ‘evil killer’ in this story, and that probably caused me to be less bothered about some of the often self-absorbed and shallow victims than I should. I would far rather live with a few billion less people and a more natural balance of wildlife. From the Earth’s point of view, we are very far short of describable as a gift from God. Perhaps in the next instalment, if Willén writes one, the lycanthrope will have a substantial degree of ‘normal’ human support. The flip-side of my reluctance to condemn the killer will surely mean that the more humanist reader, with greater empathy for the main characters, will probably enjoy the chase even more than I did.

    This book would benefit from a good edit, as a few sloppy sentences and typos take away some of the shine of quality. Despite that, I feel no hesitation in giving five stars as an entertainment. Willén generates constant interest and, in crucial scenes, real tension. There are a couple of plot weaknesses, stretch marks rather than holes, as events in different locations run in rough parallel, but not ones that detract seriously from the page turning rush. This is a great holiday read, that can be put down between bus journeys or swims, as enjoyment doesn’t require a very deep concentrate on plot detail. This is anything but an over-complicated whodunit type of thriller. But for a stronger attention to the detail of sentence structure and perhaps the inclusion of a few deeper nuances of plot, ‘the lumberjack’ could be a modern equal of any Alistair Maclean thriller. I am sure I will read other books by this author to add to this, and to the first of the Nastragall space operas that I read and reviewed a couple of year ago.

AMAZON LINK

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review 2018-06-15 18:14
Book Review: The Devil in the White City
The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair That Changed America - Erik Larson

Book: The Devil in the White City

 

Author: Erik Larson

 

Genre: Non-Fiction/Historical/True Crime

 

Summary: Bringing Chicago circa 1893 to vivid life, Erik Larson's spellbinding bestseller intertwines the true tale of two men - the brilliant architect behind the legendary 1893 World's Fair, striving to secure America's place in the world; and the cunning serial killer who used the fair to lure his victims to their death. Combining meticulous research with nail-biting storytelling, Erik Larson has crafted a narrative with all the wonder of newly discovered history and the thrills of the best fiction. - Vintage Books, 2003.

 

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review 2018-05-15 17:40
My ninety-ninth podcast is up!
Barbarians in the Greek and Roman World - Erik Jensen

Podcast #99 is up on the New Books Network website! In it, I interview historian Erik Jensen about his book on the idea of barbarians in the ancient world and the insights they offer into Greek and Roman concepts of identity. Enjoy!

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review 2017-12-02 09:16
Damaged youth.
Roam - Erik Therme

Why am I finding this audiobook so hard to review? I finished it over an hour ago and haven't been able to put pen to paper to express my feelings. I'm thinking it must be down to the characters, they all seemed so lost and sad, dragged down by their dismal pasts. I guess I'm feeling 'there but for the grace of God....'

 

During the passing of one night we meet Sarah and Matt, broken down in her car on her 21st birthday, Kevin...and Scott. All living their lives in the middle of the night, somewhere in a run-down area of America. All lost souls in their own way. 

A night that will have a profound effect on all four characters, for better or worse.

Finally, day breaks and the story draws to a close.

 

Almost a five star book, just a bit confusing early on, as to who was who and why the characters had suddenly switched in the narrative.

 

Finally, my review would not be complete without mentioning the excellent narration by Joe Hempel, who let me forget completely that I was listening to him at all.

 

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text 2017-11-29 21:06
Erster Satz | Andrzej Sapkowski: Der Schwalbenturm
Der Schwalbenturm (Hexer, #4) - Andrzej Sapkowski,Erik Simon

Wie allgemein bekannt, dreht sich das Weltall - wie auch das Leben - im Kreis.

 

Es ist ein Rad, auf dessen Felgen acht magische Punkte markiert sind, die eine ganze Umdrehung ergeben, also den Jahreszyklus. Diese Punkte, die sich auf der Radfelge paarweise genau gegenüber liegen, sind: Imbaelk oder die Knospung, Lammas oder die Reife, Belleteyn oder die Blüte und Saovine oder das Absterben. Auf dem Rad sind auch die beiden Sonnenwenden bezeichnet, Midinvaerne im Winter und Midaëte im Sommer. Des Weiteren gibt es die beiden Tagundnachtgleichen, Beith im Frühjahr und Velen im Herbst. Diese Daten teilen den Radumfang in acht Teile - und so wir im Elfenkalender auch das Jahr unterteilt. 

 

 

 

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