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Hannah

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From promising to abrupt, bizarre and tiresome

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2020-03-23

Performance:
Nothing bad to say about Peter Kenny. I think he did a great job voicing this series!

Story: **spoilers!!**
Like many, I'm sure, I was drawn to this series due to how much I loved it's adaptation on Netflix. I'm much more a book person than a TV series/movie person, so naturally I immediately looked up the books and bought the first one.

Overall, I truly enjoyed this book series. The aspects that had me binge-watching the episodes on Netflix were all intact in the books: strong characters (both male and female), interesting world-building, love/romance, a complex fight against opposing forces, dynamic political structures, humour etc. I found the writing quite good, full of description, though not too much to bog down the pace of the storytelling. Everything was going swimmingly until later in the series when I found that Gerralt's quests seemed more and more pointless, the troupe of Gerralt supporters ever-charming, but the only real progress that happened from them all gallivanting across the countryside was that additional pages were added to the book but no real plot...

The endless search for Ciri, and then the coveting of her womb for breeding purposes became uncomfortable and then bizarre and then old. Until suddenly that master plot was just finished and swiftly followed by many beloved characters dying, and at that point I was honestly only trying to finish the book to just have it over with.

At the end of it, I'm disappointed by the strange turn the story took, and how things happened without really having any reason, forethought, practicality or logic. There were certainly things that surprised me, of which I was happy about, like the connection between the Emperor of Nilfguard and Ciri, or the story swooping back to Ciri telling her story to Galahad, but more than anything I found the story abrupt, bizarre and tiresome by the time I finished book five.

1 person found this helpful

Loved it & love this series

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2020-03-23

I love these books, I've loved this series for a decade now and adore any opportunity to be immersed back into Mercy's world.

Mercy is one of my all-time favourite, kick-ass heroes. Briggs' storytelling is technical enough to keep me satisfied with details, but not too much to over-do it. One thing I was surprised by in this book was the added curse words, that's new! I like that Briggs' has let a few f-bombs fly, I think it adds a realness to the characters. Briggs' world and character building, as in her other works, are on-point, immersive, funny and interesting.

I loved the action, the other-world descriptions that added a fresher element to the story line and, as always, Mercy's humour, cunning and relationship managing with those she loves was excellent.

I'm so happy to know that this series will continue!

SO INTERESTING, SO FUNNY, SO SCARY

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2020-03-13

Okay. This book scared the CRAP out of me...but it was INCREDIBLE. It scared the crap out of me because Taylor did such a good job of logically laying out the eruption of Yellowstone that I was immediately convinced it's possible, and likely, and maybe going to happen within my lifetime, and I'm really hoping that I can sneak off to another dimension with my family to escape the death and destruction from an angry super volcano.

BUT, it was INCREDIBLE for many reasons, one of which being that I love love love books that are descriptive, but don't go over the top. Where the author goes into enough detail to make things realistic and fully-formed, but doesn't beat you over the head with it. Taylor's descriptions of the science behind Yellowstone, the geology, the political maneuvering, the reality of what happens when a super volcano erupts was so interesting to me.

Beyond that, which kept my mind playing out "what if" scenarios for days after finishing the book, there is so much more to this book than just the geek-satisfying bits. It's FUNNY! Taylor's character development is awesome, the snarky remarks are consistent and the sarcasm HEAVY and I adored all of it, even going as far as laughing on a quiet airplane.

I haven't been able to shut up about how cool and brain stimulating I found this book to be. I can't wait until the next one comes out.

Enlightening and heart-wrenching

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2020-03-13

*some vague spoilers*

I was initially drawn to this book for its cover (I'm a sunset junkie) but then was blown away by how INTERESTING this historical tale was. I hadn't known much about the civilian point-of-view from within Italy during WWII, or what it would have been like to oppose Mussolini and Hitler, yet have to live within the climate of a country allied with the Germans, watching train cars of Jewish people disappear, the bombings, yet the sense of relative distance from the brunt of the ugliness that defines that dark stain on human history. A strange middle ground on the spectrum of complete distance from the war, and being in the thick of it, yet still terrible in its own ways.

And goodness, this book was heart wrenching. Pino is so genuine and innocent, until he isn't. You hope for stories where perhaps the heroes of the story are bruised and battered and a little haunted by the end, but that love in the end will triumph...but that's not the full case here and Pino's sorrow and helplessness to intervene had tears in my eyes. Especially because it's suffering of the non-fiction kind. The translated humanity at times is overwhelming.

Despite the sadness and injustices, I was completely engrossed in this story of bravery, compassion and a determination to do what's right in the face of utter brutality and evil. I came away from the story with a sense of awe for the perseverance that exists within the human race, and was thankful to have learned such a unique story of defiance.

Cliché and bizarre

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2019-09-03

Opened this one up because I was interested in a simple listen, and because I’m helpless to the tease of a good romance plot line in a fantasy/action packed book.
What was delivered was a strange mix of carnival magic (good most of the time) and very painful, cliché coming of age plot happenings that lacked originality and wanted for more feminist-oriented views.
There were definitely times where the story was good, however I felt the storyline generally strayed from what the reality would have been with characters faced with trauma, which mostly means the ending was just so bizarre.
The ideas were interesting, and there was a lot of potential, but I felt things fell a little flat.

Absolutely Incredible

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2019-08-21

As always, Sanderson’s world building is beyond imagining—don’t know how this guy does it.

I finished this book in an almost non-stop session. Completely engrossed. Highly recommend for its fast paced intrigue, it’s action, it’s character building and beautiful detail.

Hoped for better

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2019-02-22

I’m someone who will finish a book/series usually regardless of some complaints against it, which is what I did here (finishing up to the most recent book).

Books and series aren’t always going to give you exactly what you’d prefer as you’re not the writer, and I respect that. There were a number of odd things about this series though, and a handful of them were quite off-putting.

The books trudge along slowly through a plot that honestly seems very poorly pieced together. There are a few moments where things tie up and it feels like the foreshadowing and intricacy has been brought to a higher level, but for the most part many aspects of the storyline could have been far better set up. The action is predictable in victory and the characters are never in real danger. The relationships are abrupt and detached and character development for the most part is sluggish and then jarring when it does happen. The female characters are mostly incredibly annoying and everyone bows and scrapes around an indomitable protagonist, this makes the storyline quite boring at times in its predictability. The books seems mostly like a parade of the protagonist’s male gloriousness and prowess, effortlessly seducing all the women around him and moving through society with very little issue. The plot line seems set up in a series of laundry list quests with the larger story line only really emerging in the later books with even that seeming very weak.

I really think that Rezkin could have experienced a better character development curve by book 4, yet nothing really has changed, just weak hints that something is there without a timely reveal and solution to the few issues. The only real surprise in the series has been the cliffhanger at the end of this one. I had honestly just hoped for more, and there is so much good within the pages of these books and such an intriguing base, it just hasn’t been woven as intricately as I think was possible.

2 people found this helpful

Incredible and heartbreaking

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2019-01-27

As I knew it was going to be, this book was incredible, and heartbreaking in its glance into life as an Indigenous person in Canada. Wagamese weaves a beautiful story full of connection to the rugged land, devastation at the hands of the residential school system and the salvation of a hockey stick and puck.
This story was so powerful, made all the more real by the knowledge that the damage residential schools did is still so present today and that the anti-Indigenous racism that many fellow Canadians like to think they are beyond runs rampant in many communities. Wagamese tempers the atrocities committed against the Indigenous peoples by capturing the zest of hockey, and it’s power to bring people and communities together.
This is a necessary story. I hope many more people, not just Canadians, take the time to listen to it.

Enjoyed the book, but where’s the 2nd?

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2019-01-21

Audible has the 1st and 3rd books...but not the 2nd? Really want to continue the series!

3 people found this helpful

Captivating Story

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2018-12-19

Trevor Noah’s story and telling of the story kept me intrigued through the entire book. He was funny, enlightening and critical about a story and a country that I knew little about. His writing is excellent as well, I especially liked the mini foreshadowing chapters, and then the in-depth chapter following. He builds out complex relationships, and the realities of life growing up as a mixed kid in South Africa. I’m very glad I downloaded his book.