Review” Intervention by WRR Munro

cover40064-medium

Publisher: SciThri
Publishing Date: October 2013
ISBN: 9780992377403
Genre: SciFi
Rating: 1.0/5.0

Publisher Description: Sci-fi techno thriller set in a climate change wracked, near future. Ayden Walker, a young environmentalist is shocked to learn that his parents had been involved in illegal genetic experimentation, years ago. But what he learns next, shakes the very foundations of his existence.
Investigating, he stumbles across something that could change the future of the human race if he can’t stop it… except he’s not so sure he should.
It becomes clear though, that someone has him under surveillance, someone who doesn’t tolerate interference. He’s forced to seek an uneasy alliance with military intelligence as he hunts for the truth.
Then Ayden discovers that his adversary will kill to keep his secrets.

Review: You get a sinking feeling when the opening for a novel begins with a quote from The King of Douchebags and NOT A SCIENTIST, Al Gore. To further this malady it came from a Rollingstone article. Anything Mr. Internet has to say or those that promulgate his edifice to the “disaster/blame” approach to life, I tend to ignore. That said, this novel was boring with a capital “B”. Pages and pages and pages and pages of desultory smugness, in the form of Mr. Doctor and Doctor Girlfriend smirking their way across the broad tapestry of scientific discovery. You can literally open to any random page and get poorly crafted diatribe. Here I will do it right now…lets see, opening kindle, sliding bar, and……bingo! “Yes, that’s fine.” “Shall we make the smaller group the control then?” Ramy said. “Yes, please. I ran lab-on-a-chip analyses through the night, the mozzies test positive for the bacteria. We’ll do more comprehensive testing to….” ARRRRGGGGHHHHHHH! Ok, one more time, ……..”Its legal and PR machines are second to none, and many governments are beholden to them for one thing or another. You can achieve something, however, something far more important really. you can make sure the intervention is done properly and effectively.” Dun, Dun, Dun……….Oh my, me scareds!!!!!!

When you read this, it feels like you are 5 years old, clothes shopping with your mom. You’re so bored out of your mind that you find a clothes rack to sleep in. But first you waddle around with your arms dragging, yawns uncontrollable. The only interesting thing is watching your brother pick up discarded gum to chew.

Cate and Ayden are about as interesting as, well, Al Gore. Character development was pretty poor. Just because Ayden is lovers with George and presumes Cate is also, does not a character make. There is also the daily life descriptive dimension, where everything from sitting in a lotus to fixing mushroom pasta for dinner is described. As with Al Gore, there is just way too much filler in this novel to be cogent and interesting. The cover art is not too bad, which isn’t saying much given the source material.

Advertisements

Review: The Athiest by S. Ettrich

cover40155-medium

Publisher: norn
Publishing Date: August 2012
ISBN: 9781927369074
Genre: fantasy
Rating: 2.0 out of 5.0

Publisher Description: Jillian Campbell doesn’t believe in God. When local pastor Jim Preston claims to be an agent of God called a Deiform, and declares that Jillian is one too, she dismisses him as a kook. Two days later, Preston is dead, and Jillian stands accused of his murder.

Review: This novel did not flow real well, in that it felt stilted at times. The conversations seemed to jump around the subject between the characters. A bit confusing, as you had to re-read the passages in order to decipher what the author actually meant to say. Perhaps it is a lack of concise editing that failed the author in some fashion. With some good editing I think these slight problems could be worked out.

Jillian is a kind of cop, that mostly goes undercover in her line of work. She comes off as abrasive, pig-headed, ignorant and insulting. I think the author was trying to develop the ol’ lesbian cop shtick where she is gritty, compulsive and disbelieving. It just doesn’t work. You can have only so many pages of disbelief when the evidence is contrary to Jillian’s limited view, that you begin to question the drawn out denial of the main character.

Also starting to get the sense that Jillian and Sam are going to be this lesbo team under God thing. Hopefully the author will just get on with a good story-line and not infuse it with her own sense of righteous identity. I have said it before and will say it again, you are not special because you swing any certain way. It is called bludgeoning the unsuspecting reader with pedantic egocentric flatulence.

There are two covers floating around out there, here is the original and I can see why they changed it for the re-release. IMHO they are both really bad. The angel looks like a moth that hit your car window at 80 mph.

15847261

Did I like the characters. Yes. Fairly well developed and compelling. The story-line? Yes. It is a really creative and inventive. The main character? Not so much. A little too Feminazi for my tastes. I think you can make a character that is an asshat, divergent and interesting without sacrificing their humanity. Jillian comes off as a snarling bitch that shits rainbow colored nuggets. She goes from A type jerko to submissive and scared within the span of a paragraph. Her constant nagging disbelief at just about everything, gets real tiring after awhile, especially the self-recriminatory internal dialogue. Just not real believable.

Would I buy this novel? That is a tough one. Jerk main character Jillian/Sam. Good writing. Poor editing. Probably not. I think that the poor editing really diminished the overall effect (prose) of the novel.

Review: Board Stiff by Piers Anthony

cover38917-medium

Publisher: Premier
Publishing Date: December 2013
ISBN: 9781624670855
Genre: Fantasy
Rating: 1.5/5.0

Publisher Description: Welcome to the 38th story in the land of Xanth, where one learns to be careful what they wish for…
Irrelevant Kandy is beautiful, charming and every man’s desire—that’s the problem. Kandy finds a pond and upon studying her awe inspiring reflection: lustrous midnight hair, slim and supple waist and large dark eyes set in a classically perfect face, she wishes to be different. Candy is “bored stiff” with being a woman that every man wants! She wants action, adventure, travel and to see the world. Candy’s wish seems to be answered when the magic wishing well responds by sending a powerful whirlwind to lift her up, strip her and transform her entire being and drops her on the ground where she falls flat on her face—literally.

Review: This was one of the most painful reading experiences I have ever had. A fantasy novel, set in the land of puns. Recognizing that puns by nature are extremely nauseating in there use as a comedic vehicle, the author creates this hideous pun-novel that is neither creative nor funny. It is like hanging out with my Dad (whom was born in the early 1930’s) wherein the use of puns is deemed a gift of great proportions. ITS NOT! ITS NOT FUNNY!!! ITS NOT INTERESTING! Whoa there, sorry, had a flashback moment.

I really liked the beginning of this novel, what with the wishing pool and some of the character development. Then we run into another problem with this novel. There was a constant use of the female form as a story-line vehicle and sub-plot. Page after freakin’ page was of this Basilisk, turned hottie human, whose dress goes translucent when it drops a sequin, then starts a new “event”. Sequins of Events….get it? BAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!…..fug…… Anyway, this play on the female form is relentless and sadly, demeaning. Every woman in the novel has this great bod whom constantly reveals her panties to the detriment of the surrounding men, where they immediately go blank and dumb like rutting Bucks in a field of does. There is this constant play between the characters of a perverse nature with no evident consummation. Piers Anthony strikes me as a severe reprobate verging on the perv.

This novel wears on you real fast. And as a bonus, it is extremely long. The cover art really sucks. A frickin’ stone well with toadstools. Really? That’s the best you got? .

Please skip this novel. For yourself, your sanity and your dignity.

Review: Romulus Buckle & the Engines of War by R. Preston

cover37179-medium

Publisher: Amazon
Publishing Date: November 2013
ISBN: 9781477807682
Genre: Fantasy
Rating: 4.6/5.0

Publisher Description: The frozen wasteland of Snow World—known as Southern California before an alien invasion decimated civilization—is home to warring steampunk clans. Crankshafts, Imperials, Tinskins, Brineboilers, and many more all battle one another for precious supplies, against ravenous mutant beasts for basic survival, and with the mysterious Founders for their very freedom.

Review: Wow, another epic chronicle in the Romulus Buckle saga. This novel has it all…adventure, great character and scene development, suspense and a cool cover to wrap it in. This novel never really falls flat, anywhere. Usually a novel will have some down time, depending on how the story-line is being developed. For example, at the bedside of an injured Max, the author transports you into her Martian dream-scaping that is at once compelling and unsettling. The war scenes are very well crafted and carry this humanistic element throughout, as seen through the eyes and feelings of Buckle. There is compassion, anger, love….all the emotions that we know so well, that rampage through the pages.

In the first novel, we had no sense if Buckle was a man with human needs. We began to see the burgeoning interest expressed by Max, Buckle’s chief engineer. In this installment, Buckle is confused by his feelings for Max, Sabrina and quite possibly Valkyrie, princess of the Imperial clan. The women that fly with Buckle on the Pneumatic Zeppelin are smarter than Buckle, capable and, well, hot. There is this constant tension that occurs between Buckle and the women in his world.

This was a great read, better than the City of the Founders, in that there was constant well developed scenes with good character involvement and movement. In the next installment Buckle is going to Atlantis to find his sister and I can’t wait to be there with them.

Review: The Cruel Path by David Normoyle

cover39455-medium

Publisher: normoyle
Publishing Date: November 2013
ISBN: 9781311760395
Genre: Fantasy
Rating: NR
Publisher Description: In a society without love, three brothers develop an unbreakable bond; in a land without mercy, only a handful of boys like them are allowed to reach adulthood. The three brothers take on the pitiless test of the Green Path, knowing that even if they win, one of them must die. But which? Having to make that terrible decision proves crueler than anything else the Green Path can throw at them.

Review: According to the author, this story occurs prior to the Narrowing Path novel (see review here). This is a novella and as such, it is really hard to rate and review unless you have read the prior novel. You really need to read the Narrowing Path first, before you read this. That being said, there really is not enough meat on this bone to give it a fair review. I will say that the author really needs to find some cover art help. Looks like three Bieber glitter vampires cruising for douche bags.

Review: Romulus Buckle & the City of the Founders by R. Preston

cover24087-medium

Publisher: Amazon
Publishing Date: july 2013
ISBN: 9781611099188
Genre: Fantasy/Steampunk
Rating: 4.5/5.0

Publisher Description: In a post-apocalyptic world of endless snow, Captain Romulus Buckle and the stalwart crew of the Pneumatic Zeppelin must embark on a perilous mission to rescue their kidnapped leader, Balthazar Crankshaft, from the impenetrable City of the Founders. Steaming over a territory once known as Southern California – before it was devastated in the alien war – Buckle navigates his massive airship through skies infested with enemy war zeppelins and ravenous alien beasties in this swashbuckling and high-octane steampunk adventure. Life is desperate in the Snow World – and death is quick – Buckle and his ship’s company must brave poisoned wastelands of noxious mustard and do battle with forgewalkers, steampipers and armored locomotives as they plunge from the skies into the underground prison warrens of the fortress-city.

Review: I love the Steampunk fantasy genre, especially when it is a well crafted story-line coupled with interesting characters. This novel delivers everything you could want in this genre. Romulus Buckle is an airship captain for the Crankshaft clan (Crankers) whom rule the skies over what I presume is a long time past the apocalypse of Earth. This novel starts with a BANG, where we find Buckle and crew fighting the onslaught of a nasty 500 lb bird called the Tangler, whom ends up ripping Buckle off the airship and fighting to the death as they fall to Earth.

The character development is superb as is the scene descriptions. It feels as though you are there and experiencing what occurs. Max the half Martian is a great character as is the Imperial clan’s leader, Katzenjammer Smelt. Not real sure that Sabrina is a good addition or not. Not a real compelling character. The world this author creates is a fascinating blend of the old and futuristic. From the wildlife to the current clan tech then back to alien referents of wars and the current integration of those aliens. While this novel is primarily focused on the clash between numerous clans, the author gives a compelling peak at this history of his created world.

On a side note, I always think of Buffalos as real integral part to any futuristic world where Steampunk predominates. Trains, Indians and buffalo evoke images where the new world was discovered and subsequently born that evokes the Steampunk ideal. Would have been cool if the Crankshaft clan’s representative animus were Buffalo.

Get this novel. The next in the chronicles is even better.