01/06/2009. Contributed by Geoff Willmetts
pub: Bantam Spectra. 398 page enlarged paperback. Price: $14.00 (US), $16.00 (CAN). ISBN: 978-0-553-38542-7.
check out website: www.bantamdell.com and www.autumnrain2110.com
I reviewed 'The Mirrored Heavens' a couple months back and its sequel, 'The Burning Skies' still fulfils my reaction I had to it then only more so. This book is one big firefight steeped in long pieces of dialogue leaving you absolutely not caring whose side you should be supporting or who gets killed off. To say it resembles a computer game is perhaps being too kind, mostly cos they don't have pages of freefall dialogue.
According to the blurb, author David J. Williams used to program video games but there's a great deal of difference between doing that and writing a novel which needs a greater understanding of characterisation and certainly plot to surround it in for a decent story.
Trying to explain the plot is difficult. It's supposed to be about insurrection against a bad government's forces but considering you only see the battle there's little else left to show which side is right or even if it's a war worth fighting. If Williams is going to continue these books then he needs to show the bigger picture of what is going on.
The bumf promotes this book is being advertised to the gaming community more than the more stoic Science Fiction community. Based on this book's performance, I don't think the two mix very well so can only voice cautious pending on how orientated you are to each subject.
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Stephen Hunt's novels - USA