...his narrative is focused on not eating what the rest of the crew is eating, not sleeping where others sleep...he waits in his cabin alone, wondering what the hell is going on. Dyer might as well be on a cruise ship, and he knows it.
Allende has clearly enjoyed providing rich elaborations that don't particularly advance the story . . . Each of her characters finds ’something different . . . the same may not be said of readers who enjoy Allende’s fiction.
“Frog Music” is a page-turner, full of suspense...But the novel goes far beyond the usual thriller in its nuanced characterizations: Jenny and Blanche are sculpted into living, breathing, feeling individuals, and even minor characters pulse with life.
Nathan's grit and his longing are what sustains the book..."Half Bad" is strongest when at its least fantastic, yet it still scores plenty of genre points, incorporating potions and portals and a rite of passage called the Giving, which also neatly serves as a ticking clock.
Given this long and complex history, it’s a surprise to find that the book is so readable, and so nearly complete. Perhaps it was never finished because the strain of being known as one of the finest prose stylists of his generation proved too much for Leigh Fermor’s perfectionism.
Fans know the formula: plenty of rousing battle scenes—Weber’s specialty—and characters that gradually, over many pages, come into focus...If you’re not already addicted to this series, don’t start here.
All superb storytelling aspects combine to make Concealed in Death another intellectually engaging and emotionally satisfying novel. Loyal readers will finish Concealed in Death eager for volume 39.
The Martian is true in that sense to the genre, in its manufacture and resolution of suspense carried on to the final pages.
...Cameron crafts a more straightforward adventure with a narration that nicely captures an ordinary child’s way of thinking—and of blocking out unwelcome knowledge.
In Annihilation, the first part of an imaginatively marketed and beautifully produced trilogy...Jeff VanderMeer sets out to create a lasting monument to the uncanny by revisiting...some very old ground. An alien invasion site. Assimilative spores. An unfurling of promiscuous alien biology.
Cornwell skillfully illuminates the competing cultures of the 10th Century; the conflict between Dane and Saxon is examined with sympathy and insight...
Easley’s story is perhaps as excruciating as Helen’s is liberating. At times, the novel is so disturbing in its depiction of human frailty...Sharing in his solitude, and being trapped with his wayward thoughts can become painfully introspective for the reader, making the ultimate ending all the more bittersweet.
...politically savvy but militarily uneventful novel that bridges the gap between the last novel and the expected sequel.
What has long provided the authenticity that gives credibility to Clancy’s work is his hands-on knowledge of modern weapons and the men and women who use them...Mark Greaney, his co-author on “Command Authority,” continued Clancy’s self-education in battle realities.
...drone pilots take no risks, a fact that will undoubtedly make the subjects of Holmes's book seem all the more glamorous and admirable in their pursuit of knowledge, fame, fortune, military superiority or sheer excitement.
Even if sharp-eyed readers already know how the book’s surprises may arise — has there ever been a long-lost relative who did not show up in a work of legal fiction? — they will still miss the final whammy that Mr. Grisham has in store.
While the outcome is never in doubt, the woman’s meeting with Lucian in the present day holds more than one surprise.
Leckie uses familiar set pieces—an expansionist galaxy-spanning empire, a protagonist on a single-minded quest for justice—to transcend space-opera conventions in innovative ways. This impressive debut succeeds in making Breq a protagonist readers will invest in, and establishes Leckie as a talent to watch closely.
Apart from references to such things as advanced robots..2060 New York City is indistinguishable from present-day Gotham in bestseller Robb’s 38th full-length Eve Dallas thriller...In addition, nothing in the cookie-cutter plot couldn’t have happened in the present or near past.
"MaddAddam" is at once a pre- and a post-apocalypse story, the best in that line since Thomas Disch's post-AIDS plague story, "The M.D." (1991). And the tragicomic blend works as well as Ursula Le Guin's "The New Atlantis"...