Audiobook Review: Minority Report and Other Stories by PKD (3.1 Stars)

Minority Report and Other Stories by Philip K. Dick

Narrated by Keir Dullea

3.1 out of 5 stars

Read in August 2013

Once again I find myself loving and hating PKD’s writing.  He created and imagined very intriguing stories and ideas.  I just don’t always agree with his buried (sometimes not so subtly) political ramblings.  I liked the title story, but not nearly as well as I liked the movie (even with Cruise starring in it).  I should have waited and read the story first, I suppose.

I found the gem in this collection to be the one called “Second Variety.”  I wanted more, much more, from that dimension.  I did think the protagonist was a bit slow on the uptake, though, as I thought the actions of the undercover antagonists to be obvious and telegraphed (pardon the pun).

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Book Review: Avempartha by Sullivan (3.5 Stars)

Avempartha by Michael J. Sullivan

3.5 out of 5 stars

Read in May 2009

Warning: Spoilers

Good pacing and good action throughout this second episode of the Riyria Revelations series. A trimmed down cast of characters with a few guest stars rounded out the adventure. I missed Myron, my favorite character from The Crown Conspiracy. The most character development occurred among the guest stars, particularly Thrace and Theron of Dhalgren. Hadrian and Esrahaddon revealed more of themselves. I learned more about Royce, but Arista faded to two dimensions.

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Book Review: The Ladies of Mandrigyn by Hambly (5 Stars)

The Ladies of Mandrigyn by Barbara Hambly

5 out of 5 stars

Warning: Spoilers

After discovering Barbara Hambly via the books Dragonsbane and The Time of the Dark, I just couldn’t get enough of her. She writes great, strong women characters, that are usually of the non-magical sort. The women are often the warriors, like Starhawk. Her male characters are also indelible, flawed but inspiring.

In this book, Sun Wolf is a successful mercenary captain who refuses a job that is basically a rescue mission. The women of Mandrigyn want him to rescue their men from the mines of the evil wizard Altiokis. Sun Wolf had one rule, one principle he always adhered to – never get involved in a war with a wizard.

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Book Review: Oath of Fealty by Moon (3 Stars)

Oath of Fealty by Elizabeth Moon

3 out of 5 stars

Read from May/June 2010

Highly anticipated return to Paks’ world which mostly fizzled for me. Paks had a couple of cameos, but the lion’s share of the storylines fell to Dorrin, by far the most interesting of the points of view presented. Arcolin’s story felt and looked like filler. Except for the scene in the ossuary, Kieri’s tale barely bumped through a two-dimensional plane. The most tragic loose end hinges on the fate of Stammel.

The abrupt and anti-climactic ending left me feeling ambivalent. My emotional line graph would resemble a near dead person’s EKG – a few squiggles, but no mountainous peaks or terrifying plummets.

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Book Review: The Emerald Storm by Sullivan (2.5 Stars)

The Emerald Storm by Michael J. Sullivan

2.5 out of 5 stars

Read in August 2010

Many new characters, bit part cast members, introduced in this episode, and just like their infamous red shirted ST:TOS forebearers, they dropped like flies before the credits rolled. I felt disconnected from most of the characters, with the exception of Modina and Wesley. The plot jerked, jumped and ultimately crumbled. Not even the expected banter between Royce and Hadrian could inspire a smile.

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