Wednesday, March 23, 2016

The Blinding Knife

March - Books with 500+ pages.

{{Possible spoilers if you haven't read the first book in the series! I will try not to ruin anything, but you have been warned!}}

Where do I even start?! Ok, this book was just as incredible as the first. Most times when you have a trilogy the second book tends to slow down; it becomes a filler containing mostly just enough info and action to get you through to book three. It's no fault of the authors, usually, the middle of the story just runs the risk of lagging. Not in this series.

The Blinding Knife is filled with just as many revelations, twists, points of drama, fights, complications, and moments of actual happiness as the first book. I found myself laughing, squealing, yelling, clutching my heart just as much as I had in the first book. There is so much to love and hate about this second part of the story. The fact that it took my an extra two days to finish it was simply due to the world outside the story.

Once more we find ourselves following multiple characters: Gavin Guile, Kip, Karris, Liv. With the occasional visit to the prisoner and a new plot twist, experiencing a chapter here and there as other people who will no doubt come to mean a lot more to the plot long after you have forgotten the details of their brief story. Because there is a lot more going on here! Kip is training with the Blackguard, Gavin is trying to stop a war, control the Spectrum, and get rid of banes while keeping his secrets, Karris is trying to find a way to tell Gavin she knows some of his secrets, and all the other players on the board are trying their damnedest to ruin things for everyone.

And again the brilliance of Brent Weeks is evident. I had forgotten how vividly he painted war, making the reader understand just how atrocious it really is. He is also adept at intertwining story lines, making the reader really work to figure out where everything is going and what the possible outcomes could possibly be. With about a third of the book left I went to my husband to talk to him since he had already read the book. "You've figured a lot out, but your missing some stuff that I thought you would have gotten by now." Now that I am done with the book I get what he meant, and wow, yeah, I should have seen at least one of those things coming. These books sure are keeping me on my toes. And making me overly suspicious of everyone! Because everyone in the Chromeria is a viper just waiting to strike.

I was, however, reminded of my one problem with Weeks' writing. His timelines. The problem with following multiple characters you run the risk of getting days and weeks confused. While Gavin and Karris are in one place and you think they should be back quickly, Kip is watching days, weeks, months go by, and it's not till the end of the next chapter that you figure out what is keeping the first two away so long. Weeks does as best as he can putting everything in order, but a couple of times I was thrown on precisely when events occurred in relation to other events. He straightens it out, but it throws me off just a little, nonetheless.

So other than that this books is another great read by Brent Weeks. Seriously, pick up this series! I am excited to open the third, and last, book today without hesitation. While I am terrified how Weeks can ruin everything for my beloved characters, I just have to know how everything turns out! See you on the other side!

Friday, March 18, 2016

The Black Prism

March - Books 500 pages or longer

Brent Weeks always writes incredible stories that are immensely complex and tangled, with characters that are never clear cut and all the more amazing. As a reader I am continually sucked into his worlds, thrown about by the story, and left to crawl my way out the other side a changed person! He is just such an amazing story teller.

When I first saw the theme for this month in the book club I thought my sister was insane. Not only did she want me to read a 500 page book, and near the end of the month since last month took me so long to get through, but she wanted me to read 2! Then I began panicking because I didn't think that I owned a book with 500 pages! Of course my husband had to prove me wrong, pointing out The Black Prism sitting on our already read shelf from when he had made his way through it a while back. I groaned but agreed because it met the theme and I had read Brent Weeks' Night Angel Trilogy and loved it.  But 2 things I didn't take into account when I agreed. 1) This is a trilogy, all three books 600ish pages, and we owned all three. Once I had read the first two for the book club I was going to have to read the third to be satisfied. So I was challenging myself a little more. 2) I forgot how Weeks affects me! With The Night Angel Trilogy I spent days in withdrawals, that shaking, all thought consuming, mind fog you get when you finish a series that changes your life. I couldn't stop talking about it, drawing my husband into conversations repeatedly because I hadn't been able to get over some aspects of the story. (Mostly because one terrifying thing Brent Weeks does with accuracy, not everyone gets a happy ending. A fact that has me terrified for this series!) Weeks after putting the book down saw me reeling a friend into a rabid conversation when he noticed the omnibus on my shelf. All this I have to look forward to because after just finishing the first book I know I am going to loose sleep over the possible outcomes of characters I am already far too invested in. I clutched the open pages to my chest no less than five times over the course of one page near the end! There will be no hope for me at the end of this trilogy and I hope my friends survive my inevitable rantings and ravings!

Ok, so The Black Prism takes us into a world where people regularly have magic manifesting in their ability to turn colors into objects. Think of the Green Lantern with the full rainbow. The magic isn't in everyone and those with it can have it to varying degrees, only able to handle one color to multiple ones. Then there is the Prism, the one guy in a generation who can control all the colors, using the light each day to help balance out the world of color and serving as a type of priest between the people and the god they worship, Orholam. Only, sixteen years ago Orholam decided to pick two Prisms, brothers, and this spurned a war. In the aftermath, sixteen years later, the world is still slightly off balance and people are still affected by everything that occurred. Not the least of which is the Prism, Gavin Guile, who bares the greatest affects and consequences of the actions of him and his brother.

What ensues is a winding tale following a few selected characters, none of which I will name or how they are important because there is just too much and you need to discover stuff for yourself for the greatest effect! Weeks always does a great job of looping, threading, entangling story-lines for the reader to slowly follow and discover news in ways that always leaves me gasping even though I kinda almost half expected it in the back of my mind already. And of course his characters are never as simple as the Hero and the Villain. Hell they aren't even as simple as the Hero and the Anti-hero. Even the Hero is sure he is a monster but just maybe he is a better monster than the other possible monster, but he can't be sure of it. Oh so much chaos! And I am only done with the first book!

So I am going to pick up the next one tomorrow. I am already kicking myself for thinking I wouldn't finish this one before I went home from our stay-cation at a friend's house because I could already be a hundred pages in! Anyway, expect the next review soon because Weeks has sucked me in and there is no escape until I have made my way through as quickly as possible! Pick this book up! Join me in the madness! You'll love every minute of it with this incredible story-telling!

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

In Odd We Trust

At the start of the year I read Odd Thomas and thoroughly enjoyed the book. I plan on adding the rest of the series to my shelves as soon as I can. Recently my husband was looking through the graphic novels at our tiny local library and found this! Of course I picked it up as soon as I had the chance.

In Odd We Trust is the first of so far 4 graphic novels Koontz has written. It takes place before the novels, something that is glaringly obvious if you have read the book. I really enjoyed the little forray into Odd's early days. He is just 19 in this one. Although I think he has gotten more cynical with age since he isn't as sarcastic as he was in the novels. That didn't make this quick read any less fun to read.

If you want to get a taste for the character without jumping head first into the series, this is a great place to start! Give it a shot! I don't think anyone could regret picking up a graphic novel.