Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Jason M. Hough: The Exodus Towers

You will need to read the first book within this series The Darwin Elevator before this novel as it sets up everything from the characters to the plot. Plus it was a great read and an amazing debut novel as well.

In the second novel in his Dire Earth Cycle series, the Builders are coming, the time line is getting closer, how prepared are you for them to return:

They are slowly building the new colony in Brazil trying to fortify a life away from Darwin, but still trying to prevent the vast number of spies that Blackfield still seems to be sending their way and his overall goal is still to rule space and Earth at the same times. Blackfield is not the only thing they have to worry about, from sub-human attacks and a group of cult like immunes, it is one battle after another and everyone if looking to Skylar to solve the problems. The one thing that over shadows everything is the timeline, the builders are coming and no one has any idea of what they are going to bring this time.

This novel takes up shortly after the first novel the Darwin Elevator leaves off, they have created their own new colony and appear to prospering well on Earth, but not so much in space. I like that there was not too much of a time gap where things could have happened. There were so many big events in the first novel that lead the reader to hear that I did not want to miss a thing.

I'm a huge fan of Skylar, I like the way he thinks, act everything. He is a well rounded character that may stray a bit to the more adventurous/risky side of things, but that is how he gets things done. I actually think I prefer Skylar's character away from Tania and the colony. He is an explorer and adventure at heart and being tied down to one place where there really is no crisis is a waste of his abilities.I also like that he has the ability to think outside the box and knows that the towers need to be followed and explored to determine if they are going to be harmful to them.

This book easily could have been divided into two books if Hough would have decided to draw out the Gabriel encounter, but I am glad he did not. I think he addressed a topic that needed to be discussed, are there more immune out there other than the few that we know about. What happened to some people that were unable to make it to Darwin in time. with this I am happy that Hough decided to introduce some new characters to help Skylar out. While there are not chapters from their point of views, they are great secondary characters

I like that there are several points of view within the novel. You are able to see what is happening in Darwin, and the towers above as well as Belem and their towers. This gives an overall view point of what is happening in and above Earth and how everyone is fairing. I know some people do not like the different view points but I think it is one of my favorite things that Hough does within his novel.

For someone who does not tend to drift towards sci-fi novels, I found myself fully engrossed with this story and I think this mainly has to do with Skylar's character and Hugh's world building. I never actually feel like I am a reading a sci-fi novel more like a possible future for us. I recommend this series to those who love sci-fi and fantasy but also to those who are thinking of trying either of those genres, this series will surprise you as it keeps surprising me.

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Wednesday, November 6, 2013

R. F. Sharp: No Regrets, No Remorse

In his debut novel R.F. sharp shows what happens when murder resolves around lawyers who know the law inside and out:

Oscar us a former lawyer who has found his passion in making art and running a art gallery. He is a long way from the court room and has no designs of returning ever. However, when his former partner, Roy, is accused of murder, Roy does not want anyone representing him but Oscar. Roy knows that Oscar believes him when he says that he is not guilty. But Oscar is going to need all the help he can get from his roommate Sydney Simone, who has her own secrets that she hides from Oscar and a set of skills that he is not even aware of. As the two of them get closer to the real killer they get their own target on their back.

Overall this novel was okay, but I did not get what I expected from this book. I thought that Sydney was the main character of this novel based upon the premise but other than the first chapter, Oscar was the more prominent character. Sydney's story and character were secondary and I actually think there were more chapters from Oscar's point of view than Sydney's. This is why the premise was so confusing, it is meant to be Sydney who is the main character whose story we are meant to follow, not Oscar. Sydney's story was the one that had me interested enough to pick up this novel and I feel jilted by not getting to fully explore it. Whomever wrote the premise for the book did not read this book before they did.

It was interesting reading about Oscar attempting to re-navigate through  world as a lawyer as well as as a now investigator. Oscar was an easy character to like as  he attempt to navigate through in almost a child like way. I think he seems to always think the best of people even though that gets him into trouble a few times through out the book. there are also times when this character aspect is frustrating because he misses things that are right in front of his face.

This book had a lot of promise, you can tell that this is Sharp's debut novel, it lacks an overall finesse and flow of a more seasoned author. The mystery in the novel is overall okay, it was able to hold my attention, it was predictable at times, but I will say that there were a few times that Sharp was able to surprise me. Therefore, I think that Sharp may be an author to watch out for in the future. I think that once he has the ability to refine the story and content more there will be something great here. I would read another novel by Sharp to see if there are improvements between the first and second novel. Those who are looking for an easy mystery to follow and read would enjoy Sharp's novel.

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http://j9books.blogspot.ca/2011/06/s-l-pierce-secrets.html  http://j9books.blogspot.ca/2011/10/brian-springer-blood-money.html  http://j9books.blogspot.ca/2012/11/allen-wyler-dead-ringer.html