The Golem and the Jinni The Golem and the Jinni #1

The Golem and the Jinni follows two parallel stories: that of a Golem and a Jinni (of course), each finding their way from fall flung shores to circa 1900 New York City.

It’s a relatively complex narrative structure, jumping from the Golem to the Jinni and even to a few minor characters within the space of a chapter. Even in one viewpoint, there are multiple timelines, showing how events a thousand years apart all fit together. Yet despite all of this, I never got lost, never couldn’t figure out where I was in the story. It took a while for the story lines to start coming together (for a while, it felt like reading two books), but once they do things just keep pushing towards the conclusion.


The Autumn Republic Powder Mage #3

A solid conclusion. Basically, The Autumn Republic builds on the world of the first two books, without really needing to introduce much in the way of new characters (with a few relatively minor exceptions) or new world building, instead taking everything to a final conclusion.

So far as the characters go, I really found myself rooting for the good guys and hoping they would save the day, even when they did some not entirely unobjectionable things. In particular, I’m glad that Adamat’s story at least didn’t get any worse and that he managed to survive (spoilers) all the crap that the Marked and Privileged put him through.


The Crimson Campaign Powder Mage #2

I think the main reason that I had some problems following all of the different storylines in the first Powder Mage book was that I was reading one chapter per day and discussion as I went. Reading straight through the second book helped keep everything together. It also helps that there are few to no new major characters.

Overall, this was very much the second book in a trilogy. It picks up where the first left off and sets up the third. It probably wouldn’t stand particularly well alone, but then again it doesn’t have to. It’s pretty much action all of the way through, tying up various plot lines just to ramp things up even more.


Vortex Spin Saga #3

After the strong opening in Spin and the someone meh followup with Axis, I wasn’t expecting particularly much from Vortex. Consider me pleasantly surprised.

Getting back to the huge events and big timespans of Spin, Vortex takes place ten thousand years after Axis, after the Temporal Arch discovered towards the end of that book ends its next cycle. Two of Axis’ main characters (Turn and Isaac) are dumped out / recreated and picked up by a island sized ship that has been floating through arch after arch through the Eight Worlds (apparently the arches connecting Earth to Equatoria connect through several other worlds and finally end at Mars, which is a neat concept).


Axis Spin Saga #2

Unfortunately, many of the other reviewers here are on point. In Spin, we followed the lives of a small groups of characters while big ideas happened around them, spanning either decades or billions of years, depending on your perspective. In Axis, the ideas are not nearly as big, the timespan isn’t quite so vast, and the cast of characters has changed to ones I don’t find myself caring about as much.

There is a bit of an interesting follow up here to the last chapter of Spin: what’s on the other side of the arch and just what are the Hypotheticals. I think the first could make an interesting story all of itself, just following a series of explorers further and further through the worlds, but that’s not what Axis is. And so far as the second–we don’t really learn anything new. There are hints of something bigger (which is saying something, given something on a scale with the entire galaxy) and a few smaller neat ideas, but nothing quite comes together.


Spin Spin Saga #1

(minor spoilers; although nothing more than used to be on the Goodreads summary)

I really enjoy science fiction where they take a really big / weird idea and just run with it. Spin is exactly that sort of book. In a nutshell, one night all of the stars seem to go out. Over the book, the protagonists discover that not the stars didn’t actually go out, but rather the Earth was enveloped in a shell that is causing time on Earth to run roughly 100 million times slower, while at the same time preventing any ill effects therefrom.


The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest Millennium #3

Given that Hornet’s Nest kicks off immediately following the events of Played with Fire, I was hoping that it could keep up the momentum of the previous book and avoid the slow first half / crazy second half that the previous two books had suffered from. Unfortunately, no such luck. If anything, it takes even longer to get moving and the conclusion isn’t quite as action packed as the previous novels.

On the other hand, I do feel like this was a solid conclusion to the series. It wrapped up a lot of loose ends that I hadn’t even realized I was missing and finished character arcs, particularly for Lisbeth. She’s still odd, but I’m really starting to understand where she comes from. And in the end, she wins. I would have been rather grumpy with the author (even if he is dead) had she not come out all right in the end.


The Girl Who Played with Fire Millennium #2

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo took a while to get into. It wasn’t until Lisbeth and Blomkvist were finally in the same place perhaps halfway through the book that things really started moving.

The Girl Who Played with Fire is much the same.


Promise of Blood Powder Mage #1

I’m not entirely sure what to think about this book.

On one hand, there are several varied magic systems in this book. You have the Privileged, the Marked, and the Knacked.


The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo Millennium #1

It’s not that often any more that I finish a book in a day. That should tell you something about what I thought about the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Especially when it isn’t fantasy. It isn’t science fiction. It isn’t horror (at least not the supernatural sort). Really, it’s more of a investigation / thriller. Not a genre that I read that often.

Honestly, for the first half of the book, I wasn’t sure that I was even going to finish it, let alone read the sequels. There were a few different story lines going on that I didn’t really see how they fit together. Nothing overly much seemed to be happening. Then, around halfway through (when the main characters finally started to interact more), things really started moving. I read the rest of the book in one sitting.