Kevin E. (spiralcity) - Reviews

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The Anubis Gates
The Anubis Gates
Author: Tim Powers
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 28
Review Date: 1/29/2011
Helpful Score: 1


THE ANUBIS GATES

Tim Powers has crafted a unique time-travel story which proves to be multifaceted. Alternate history, magic, a werewolf, poets, beggars, body swapping., and a multitude of strange events fill every page of this colorful novel.

Having never read Tim Powers I wasn't sure what to expect, I hoped for the best and my wish was answered. The story is bright, witty, and very well written. Mr. Powers prose flow effortlessly, he has complete command of the English language and a cool sense of timing, and not to mention the vivid imagery his distinctive voice creates.

Elegant and effective.

A time-traveling masterpiece.


Boys Life
Boys Life
Author: Robert McCammon
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 4.5/5 Stars.
 6
Review Date: 12/30/2010
Helpful Score: 1


Boy's Life,

Mr. McCammons prose flow like sweet melted butter. Robert McCammons writing is top notch, head and shoulders above the rest. This is perhaps the best coming of age story I have ever read.
A murder in the small southern town of Zephyr is merely the canvas used to paint a much larger tale of a boy's life. The character's we engage along the way are sweet, innocent, mean, burly, soulless and soulful. All the colors of emotion wrapped into an elegant tale. This is an exciting and very moving novel. I laughed as well as cringed at the antics of all the people I had the pleasure to meet. I also felt the warmth and sadness of the love and loss that was encountered along the way.
To say this is simply a coming of age story would be like calling the Golden gate bridge "Just a bridge" This book is a true master piece, written by a master, a timeless classic, one that I shall always treasure.


The Long Result
The Long Result
Author: John Brunner
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
 3
Review Date: 2/15/2010
Helpful Score: 1


THE LONG RESULT

In an advanced society racism rears its ugly head and alien visitors are the targets. Who are the conspirators and why the hatred?

John Brunner weaves a terrific tale; he manages to capture the reader's attention with his subtle yet potent prose. The book's ebb and flow rides on a undercurrent of social unrest.

Starhome is a space colony formed by earth. Space colonies are expected to be just that; a space colony. Starhome is much more. Looking to break away from earth and form a separate nation in space, Starhome concocts a plan to disrupt the peace of earth: The Stars Are For Man League. The League is a front to keep the politicians busy while Starhome prepares to ask for its freedom.

This was a terrific book and a book, which tackles the subject of racism and hatred. John Brunner wrote this book in 1965, so some of the science and technology are dated but the subject remains fresh and relevant.

I highly recommend this book.


Moon
Moon
Author: James Herbert
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 2.8/5 Stars.
 12
Review Date: 1/15/2011
Helpful Score: 1


Moon is a story about knowing ones self and accepting yourself for who you are. In the end we control our destiny, we have the power within ourselves to be all we can be; we just have to learn to guide this source and not let it guide us.

Jon Childes has created a new life for himself on an Island off the coast of England. His dark secrets from the past are shared only with his new girlfriend as he tries to create a safe haven for himself and forget the events from the previous year. This is not to be so, Jon has a certain power that has surfaced once again, and it brings evil, which threatens everyone Jon has become close to.

James Herbert's writing is sleek and fast; his prose at times seems less than refined but in the end his command of the English language surfaces and shines through.

This is a great book and I highly recommend it.


Strangers
Strangers
Author: Dean Koontz
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 251
Review Date: 1/29/2011
Helpful Score: 1


Strangers

Strangers is a story about friendship, inner strength and survival. Dean Koontz weaves a complex tale filled with many colorful characters.

(There are nine main characters and two sub-characters to keep track of in this lengthy novel).

A roadside motel and its neighboring diner are the main backdrop for the story, but Mr. Koontz manages to take us coast to coast as the plot unfolds. Somehow, a group of complete strangers seems connected though none can remember ever having met. The roadside motel is the common factor each of the characters share.

The book moves at a very good pace. The 698-page length seemed like 300 pages. I could not put the book down. I read the Berkley paper back, which contains a nice afterward from the author, the afterward proved insightful and humorous as does most of Mr. Koontz comments.

I highly recommend this novel.


Telempath
Telempath
Author: Spider Robinson
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 3.3/5 Stars.
 8
Review Date: 1/13/2011
Helpful Score: 1


Telempath,
This book was written 1976 and is steeped in hippie ideology's. (Smoking pot to achieve a state of Zen and the ever famous, 'peace and love will conquer all.') The idea the book is based around intrigued me and is relevant to the problems we face in the world today; terrorism. The problem with the book is that the old hippie ideas don't hold water in the real world.

(ALL VIOLENCE)(CAN BE AVOIDED BY THE TRULY SERENE MIND)
This is straight from the book. Sometimes I felt the author was forcing his views on me as I read.(Not that I disagree with all his views.) I just don't like to be force-fed political view points while reading sci-fi.

The writing style at time's annoyed me. The author had tendencies of introducing characters from nowhere then giving the ever famous (Info dump) to explain who they were. Why not work the characters into the story? What was the rush? The book is short as it is.

What could have been a very good story fell short of the mark.I'm hard pressed to give this book a 2 1/2 star rating, but I will. I like Spiders 'Callahan' stories but I had a very hard time digesting this book.

I know many praise Spider and look upon him as the next Robert Heinlein, and these followers will have a hard time with my review. I just want to say, "I tried to like the book. I really did." I just don't feel it's worthy of a 5 star rating.


The Traveling Vampire Show
The Traveling Vampire Show
Author: Richard Laymon
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 143
Review Date: 2/17/2010


THE TRAVELING VAMPIRE SHOW. Come and see - the one and only known VAMPIRE in captivity. - VALERIA - Gorgeous! Beguiling! Lethal!

This is a coming of age story. The entire story unfolds over the course of one day, and one long night. Three local teenagers desire nothing more than to see, `The Traveling Vampire Show.'

Richard Laymon writes with a fluid sense of ease, his prose flow effortlessly allowing the reader to feel comfortable within the world of his text. This allows for a quick and satisfying read. The character development is engrossing and charming. You learn to hate, as well as love the people you meet as the day slowly shifts to night. The subtle tension the author creates as the day proceeds is top-notch, but the payoff awaits the reader in the final chapters.

I have only read one other coming of age story that surpasses this one, "Boy's Life" by Robert McCammon. In my opinion, that really say's something about this book. For those of you who have read "Boy's Life" you'll definitely enjoy, The Traveling Vampire Show'


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