I hate to admit it, but this is the first science fiction book I was unable to finish for many different reasons which I hope to touch on in the following review.
I really liked the premise and was hoping that things would improve, but over halfway though I could no longer continue. The book had some redeeming qualities, however it was like a bad day of golfing where you cannot hit the ball at all and then you hit one good ball and want to keep playing this great game; golfers know what I mean. I wanted to stop listening to the book earlier, but just about the time I gave up, a nugget of storyline kept me engaged and it would carry me to the next point of stopping.
I would say the story was like mixing Star Wars, Star Trek, and Stormship Troopers along with a having psy powers. Sounds great, right? It did for me also and with narration issues and story problems it did not meet my high-level of expectations.
One of the main things that turned me off was the frequent use of modern-day vulgar/slang language for this faraway space opera. Every time a vulgar word was used, it would pull me out of the story and make me think I’m instead listening to sailors or truckers talking; no offense to sailors or truckers but most know what I mean when use this analogy. Such words cheapen the story as the author was unable to come up with any other words to express the character’s strong nature or their expressiveness. Again, it seemed to just pull me out of the story and I wonder why the author resorted to these words for this type of story. I think this also limits the audience as the book is not geared towards YA audiences, if you are adverse to vulgar language, but could have easily filled this role if the language was more limited or removed; in most cases the words were not necessary to make a point.
I will say that I liked the few periods where the author surprised me with the direction the story went or shocked me with specific outcomes. There were times I felt deep emotion while listening, but other times I could not say focused as the story seemed to wander and not have any real direction. I also enjoyed that the author tied in aspects of the story in various points along the way. An object or item introduced at the beginning of the book was referenced a few other times and it brought me back to the earlier time. These were some of my favorite parts of the book.
I have not read or listened to other material by this author , but I would be interested in reviewing some of her other works unless they are like this one.
As this review is done for the audiobook version, I think narration is an important reason I was unable to finish the book. There were a few different narrators, however I thought the main narrator was often monotone and did not reflect the events of the story as he read them. The female voice was not as bad, but this voice was used infrequently in the fist half of the book. There were volume issues and also points of editing that should have been removed from the final version. In a few spots, the narrator would say something like “He cleared his throat” and then perform the action instead of doing one or the other. Just seemed strange from other audiobooks I have ever listened to. For me it seemed the narrators did not have the passion or knowledge of the book they were reading. I really wanted to at least finish the story, but was unable too.
Was the book worth listening too? I have to say both yes and no. Like I said above, there were those little story gems that made me think the story was going to improve, but these were so few and far between that I could not finish the book. If I did not have a queue of other material to listen to I may have given this book a longer chance than I did.
Disclaimer: This book was provided to the reviewer by either the author, narrator, or publisher in exchange for posting a non-bias review.