Thursday, November 17, 2011

Since Flanagan officially ended the Ranger's Apprentice series, but felt there were outstanding questions left to answer, he compromised and put together this book....which is a collection of stories around various characters and situations that sort of put the finishing touches on the stories.  I loved the handling of this, and it definitely left me satisfied, all questions answered, things are over, time to move on (though I confess, I will mourn the series for awhile, it was amazing).  So, don't start with these tales, but if you've read the others, this will definitely help you to move on and feel like you don't have any unanswered story threads hanging over you.

I heard about this book, and thought "oh god ANOTHER zombie novel"....but I was wrong and they (yes, THAT they, the ones who know all) were right......this is a zombie novel, but done differently than any I've ever read.  In this novel, we are introduced for the first time, the concept of kindness and mercy.....of remembering that zombies used to be ACTUAL people....and the author explores the idea (very scarily and accurately) that once people become immune to hurting others (even if they are zombies) that it doesn't take long before they begin targeting others....after all, if you enjoy plucking wings off flies, or beating up animals, it's a small step to human abuse and imagine those sickos have access to actual human shaped creatures to play with.....and are REWARDED for said activities.....yeah, it's scary......and Maberry does an awesome job of making these points, while still telling an exciting, suspenseful and intriguing story.  I literally stayed up for hours to finish this book....and cannot wait to read the sequel.

I grabbed this book, probably on a recommendation and most likely because it won a Newberry......and I really enjoyed it.  I really didn't understand why it was classified as SF until I got further into the story, but having been a huge fan of Wrinkle in Time, I completely got all the references the author threw in.  I figured out some of the plot twists before the protagonist did, but I think that was the point.....and I think for anyone who wants a "soft" scifi novel (doesn't feel like scifi, though it technically is) When You Reach Me is the perfect hit........though I do wish it were in a more modern setting....I don't know why it's set in the late 70's......that was my only dislike, but not a big enough distraction to take away from my enjoyment of the novel.

I had been waiting for this novel to come out since the LAST one.....which is pretty much par for the course for me and many other Pierce fans.  Beka Cooper is one of my favorite characters, and I am guessing this is the last in this set for this character, though who knows.  Beka is on the run to find the royal heir who has been kidnapped and sold to slavers in a plot to take over the kingdom.......and because she is on the run, the novel goes at a breakneck pace from start to finish.  Pierce throws in plenty of twists and lots of well as a few moral anti-slavery messages......another AMAZING fantasy adventure from one of my favorite authors.....not to be missed!

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