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review 2017-05-03 13:23
Measuring humanity
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? - Philip K. Dick,Robert Zelazny

I don't know whether to be hopeful or depressed. I think I'm a good deal of both, plus amazed, and horror stricken. There is a lot of the Sisyphean in this, which I guess is on purpose, given all the Mercer stuff (which on the last pages got trippy as fuck, of the religious hallucination variety).

 

And it makes a good job of running through many questions regarding empathy, psychological manipulation, human's social animal condition, loneliness, plus whatever I didn't get, inside few pages on an action packed day for a bounty-hunter.


Really intense little book.

 

Rachel hates him because he recognized her even while she couldn't recognize herself? (I'm unsure on this, she must have known to sleep with other bounty-hunters) Or maybe she hates him because it's another failure to fool a human, and can't understand where the failing lies.

She goes for the goat. But in the end, maybe his wife was more important. She actually cares and.. well, it felt hopeful to me. No pet, but why should you feel bereft if you can care for another person... which is a bit messed up and might be the reason Deckard is so messed up: HE doesn't care for HER.

Cyborgs are really terrifying because it's clear by the end that they are absolutely psychopathic. The spider makes you understand what the fact that they truly can't empathize really means. All the fripperies that have you in doubt make it even scarier. Of course, you have Irmgand so who knows?

(spoiler show)
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review 2017-04-27 22:11
Book Review of Lost Time (Between Two Evils Book 2) by D. L. Orton
Lost Time (Between Two Evils) (Volume 2) - Micah McDonald,D. L. Orton

If someone took everything you live for, how far would you go to get it back?

When a faulty time machine deposits Diego in a towering evergreen, he knows he's in the wrong place—but has no idea he's in the wrong time. Naked and shivering in the chilly mountain air, he attempts to climb down, but slips, whacks his head on a branch, and falls into oblivion.

 

He wakes up inside a darkened room, crippled and disheartened, and must come to grips with the realization that he is marooned in a bleak alternate future. In this universe, what remains of the human race is trapped inside a handful of aging biodomes. With his mission failed, his world destroyed, and the one woman he loves, dead, he can find no reason to go on living.

 

But Lani, the emotionally scarred doctor who finds him, refuses to let him die, and as Diego heals, their relationship becomes... complicated. He struggles to let go of the past but is unable to get Isabel out of his head—or his heart. Just when it seems he may be able to find some measure of happiness in a world teetering on the edge of extinction...

 

Another note arrives from the future: Isabel is alive—but not for long…

 

Review 4*

 

This is the second book in the Between Two Evils series. I enjoyed this book more than the first one.

 

Diego is a fantastic character. I really liked him. He is kind and loving. There is a lot of cheesy/pun-y dialogue by him that had me rolling my eyes at times, but its all part of his charm. When the time machine (from book 1) malfunctions, he finds himself trapped eighteen years in the future. This future/parallel world has been devastated by a terrible event and the survivors are living in biodomes created by David Kirk (who is known as Dave Kirkland where Diego originally comes from). Will Diego find a way to get home to Isabel, or will he be trapped in this alternate universe forever?

 

This story is a lot less complicated than the first book and is based purely in the alternate world where Diego finds himself. The story is told mostly through the eyes of Diego, though other characters have their say too, mostly Lani, the unofficial doctor in the biodome (called affectionately the Bub by its inhabitants) and her seventeen year old daughter Shannon. These two characters play a major role in this story and I liked them both. A lot. They have a warmth about them that made them come alive, not to mention they are both stubborn and opinionated. There are also other characters that are introduced and give the story an interesting twist. One of them is Madders, a pilot who is a father figure to Shannon and encourages her to follow her dream of being an engineer. He doesn't actually make an appearance until late into the story but he too has a major role in this tale.

 

This book is action packed and took me on a wild roller coaster ride of emotion. There is even a hint of romance, and I found myself hoping that Diego and Lani would get together. However, his heart still belongs to Isabel. Diego struggles with his new reality and is determined to find a way to get home to her. I did find some of the story repetitive plot-wise to book one, which annoyed me, even though the scenes were completely different. I suppose this is the problem with time travel type stories, where the plot follows the same line even if events happen in a different way. The story does end on an exciting if somewhat heartbreaking climax and it left me in tears. Although not exactly a cliffhanger, it definitely made me eager to find out what happens next. I am now looking forward to reading the third book, Dead Time, as soon as possible.

 

DL Orton has written an intriguing time travel romance. I enjoyed her writing style, which is not as fast paced as some other authors I've read but it still had me turning the pages. The flow of the story is a lot smoother than the first book and this made it a more pleasurable read. I would definitely read more of her books in the future.

 

There are no scenes of an explicit nature, although there is mention of sexual activity. Having said that, I do not recommend this book to younger readers (under 16) due to the nature of the story. However, I do recommend this book if you love dystopian or time travel romances. - Lynn Worton

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review 2017-04-27 15:34
This Was a Hard One to Rate
Swan Song - Robert R. McCammon

So many of my friends absolutely love "Swan Song" and I felt badly that I did not love this book as much as they did.

 

I think most of my problems revolve around the fact that there are three separate mini-plots going on in this book before everything syncs up in the final couple of hundred pages (this book was a behemoth!) and I just was not feeling anything.

 

Maybe because I seriously doubt that after just a few years after a world wide nuclear event the sun would just come out one day and that people would be able to eat all of the food from the poisoned Earth. That is where the fantasy part comes into play though. So I had to turn my brain off a bit while reading and stopped saying that can't happen.

 

Also, I really loved the character of Josh. But Swan got on my nerves (I am so ashamed!). I hated the fact that everyone was so focused on keeping her safe they were putting themselves in danger and she stupidly a couple of times thought that turning herself over would be the best thing. And also that her talking was enough to get people to put down their weapons.

 

Maybe I am looking at this book way too much in the lens of the recent U.S. election when a smart capable woman was demonized. And I look at the character of Swan and think that in most cases she would have been hung as a witch and or ignored cause who is going to listen to what some girl says. I loved what McCammon was trying to do with this book, but like I said, maybe my own cynicism stopped me from just letting go and enjoying this book. 

 

"Swan Song" is parts fantasy and I didn't really get the horror aspect of it. There is a character that comes along that I found absurdly pathetic. I think we were supposed to be scared of them. But for me, I was more scared of the human characters like Roland and Macklin who justified the things that they were doing. Even though I found them terrible. I still felt for them because you realize pretty early on that Roland was broken before the nuclear war and just went even more over the edge after it. Also can I say that I hated this character having the name of Roland. It made me think of Stephen King's "Gunslinger". 

 

 

I thought the writing was good though. I liked the message that McCammon was trying to push a bit about how love and listening was more important than guns. And that a girl (young woman) could rise up to be the leader the world needed. I just feel bad that I didn't find it believable which says more about me than him.

 

“No man was ever prouder of a daughter than I am of you,” Josh whispered in her ear. “You’re going to do wonderful things, Swan. You’re going to set things right again, and long before you come back to Mary’s Rest ... I’ll hear your name from travelers, and they’ll say they know of a girl called Swan who’s grown up to be a beautiful woman. They’ll say she has hair like fire, and that she has the power of life inside her. And that’s what you must return to the earth, Swan. That’s what you must return to the earth.”

 

The flow was off the whole book though. The POV would switch between Josh/Swan, Roland/Macklin and then Sister and whoever she was running around with. By the end McCammon kept adding and disposing of characters left and right and I couldn't keep a lot of people straight. I teared up when we get to the scenes with Leona and Killer (the terrier) but after that I just stopped really engaging with any of the characters and just pushed myself to finish the book.

 

The ending leaves the world as we have come to know it in a new wave of reconciliation and rebuilding. 

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review 2017-04-26 20:46
Closing the circle.
Feversong: A Fever Novel - Karen Marie Moning

Heh. I'd wondered in the 5th volume, but we were turned around so many times, I'd dropped it. Nice mind-screw.

 

Like this whole saga, the book rating will be very subjective. I had a lot of fun, and enjoyed the twist and turns and ridiculous fits of mightiness; rolled my eyes at some of the drama (though I got itchy eyes at some points) and in-depth search inside the characters brain-process (get on with it! Ohhh, that's why!), and loved how it fucks with your suspicions and it's own worlds-building. The shifty morality of most the cast (a point that would stick to most readers craw) bothers me none at all

 

Lots fertile ground for off-shot stories, but mostly neatly tied.

 

I so have to re-read all nine books now I know.

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text 2017-04-26 18:25
Reading progress update: I've read 60%.
Swan Song - Robert R. McCammon

It doesn't feel like I am making much progress with this book. I read chapters and chapters and I see it's moved like a percent. Then I took a look and realized this thing is 864 pages.

 

I feel bad for saying this, but this thing could be cut a bit. Or at least stop all of the jumping around to Sister, Swan and Josh, and then Roland and that whole crew of horribleness that is going on right now. I guess right now that my big issue is that the whole thing reads like and then this happened, and then this happened, and then this other thing happened. I am just having a hard time keeping things straight. 


Also this came out in 1987 which is a few years after King's "The Stand" and I am seeing some similar themes play out with regards to fate. Heck right now Roland is a stand in for Harold from "The Stand". Macklin seems way too similar to Trash Can Man to me.

 

I adored "Boy's Life" and that book really touched me in a way a book hasn't in years. And so far this is the third of his books I have read that I went, okay, I get it. I like this, but don't love it. I don't see me re-reading this for years to come. But, "Boy's Life" came later when I think you can see how much he has grown. And wow, this is turning into a mini-review and I am going to just end this now. 

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