Thriller fans and readers may be disappointed by Christopher Reich’s first book in the Jonathan Ransom series, Rules of Deception. The premise of the story is that Ransom’s wife dies in a mountaineering accident with Jonathan, but he soon finds that she is not who she seemed to be when alive. His decision to investigate this oddity, though only a medical doctor, thrusts him into the dark world world of espionage, terrorism, counter terrorism, and fanatical religious zealots.
It all appears to be a good recipe for a great thriller, except for several points. First, there are way too many implausible plot points. Second, at least for me, none of the main characters are very appealing or likeable, except for a Swiss policeman named von Daniken.
Decide for yourself. I give it 2 stars and that’s being generous.
#Readers of #fantasy adventure, especially #GOT, may differ with me on this fourth book by George R.R. Martin in the saga A Song of Ice and Fire. For me, this book was more tedious. Maybe that was due to the lack of characters that I care about. It offered a good continuation of the ongoing story narrative within the Seven Kingdoms and beyond, but told from the point of view of previously minor characters. Wherever a chapter arose with Sansa or Arya or Jon Snow I was delighted.
Nevertheless, all the fine word craft and storytelling skills that readers have come to expect from Martin are in this book, so that is not lacking. I am eager to move on to the fifth book. Overall, this one I give 3.5 Stars.
#Readers of #fantasy adventure, especially #GOT, will certainly delight in George R.R. Martin’s third novel in the saga, A Song of Ice and Fire. Once again, Martin weaves a masterful tale with ingenious plot twists, tragic characters, and incredible suspense. While a blow-by-blow of the story is impossible with a novel this long and entwined, suffice it to say it is brilliant. Numerous characters meet a pointed end, and others, few to be sure, gain some slight cessation in their suffering.
Martin’s writing craft continues to sparkle as the narrative carries through various points of view of key characters. Fans of the HBO GOT series will find some divergence from the story shown on screen. I’ve enjoyed the TV series, an avid fan for sure, but found Martin’s to be clarifying in many places, as well as satisfying. One the whole, the two are pretty similar, with Martin’s being the original. Overall, a spectacular series. 5 stars. (Only 6 typo errors in over 1100 pages.)
#Readers of #sci-fi will most likely enjoy this novel by esteemed scientist Carl Sagan, even if it is a bit dated by current standards. Written in the mid-1980s, the story revolves around Dr. Ellie Arroway and her connection to mathematics and the stars. These interests lead to a career in radio astronomy, especially working with the Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence (SETI), a field that the author worked in as well.
When a signal is received from the Vega star system by Ellie and her team, the forces for and against the revelation of more intelligent life forms in the galaxy shape up quickly and intensely. Some of the story parallels the 1997 movie version and parts of it were dropped or altered in the film. Overall, it offers a good exploration of the human reaction to such a discovery (assuming that this has not happened already, but is kept secret).
However, I found the book’s ending/resolution to be somewhat weak. Also, I am divided on whether I like the book or the movie better. Enjoy! 3 Stars.