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Helpful Votes: 32

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Page: 1
Offered by Digiflex
Price: £4.00

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Simply put - it doesn't work..., 2 Nov. 2011 all. After an hour of trying to get even one port to work I've just given up. Save yourself some money and avoid.

The Terminal State (Avery Cates 4)
The Terminal State (Avery Cates 4)
Price: £4.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The formatting is terrible!!, 10 Mar. 2011
This is the first Kindle title I've read and I'm really disappointed in how it's been formatted. There are double spaces between lines of dialogue and each paragraph and that's very disruptive to the flow of reading.

So my 1 star is for the formatting...great book otherwise.

The Margarets
The Margarets
by Sheri S. Tepper
Edition: Hardcover

19 of 24 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A Failure, 6 Aug. 2007
This review is from: The Margarets (Hardcover)
Tepper is one of only a handful of authors whose new book gets an automatic pass to the top of my 'to read' pile. I haven't liked every one of her novels but I've certainly read them all. In some ways you always know what you're going to get with Tepper: she's an angry, issues-driven writer with a lot to say. On the other hand, you never quite know what she's going to deliver. She is a skilled writer - even at her worst she's better than most - who always manages to entertain even if her message isn't convincingly conveyed.

The Margarets has an unnecessarily convoluted plot that is spread out over far too many pages. The story is about the need for mankind to be able to learn from its mistakes via the intervention of a god-like entity. This involves a quest that, naturally, comes down to one person - you guessed it! - to succeed. The reasoning behind Margaret's role in this scheme is not adequately explained and the whole scenario seems preposterous.

Not that 'preposterous' is unusual for Tepper. At some point in just about all over her novels, usually when the reader feels most comfortable that they have a handle on the plot, she introduces a twist that flips the book on its head. That twist comes mercifully early in The Margarets. For reasons I'm still not clear on, Margaret splits off personalities from herself at various points. These are not split-personalities but living breathing versions of Margaret. Eventually there are seven different (but the same) 'Margarets' using different names on different planets, all initially unaware of the existence of the others. You will either accept this and just allow Tepper to take you on a journey...or you will throw the book down never to be picked up again.

I'm not likely to ditch a Tepper novel - the rewards for placing yourself in her generally assured hands are usually worth a bit of silliness...but not this time. The Margarets is a failure. The plot seems as though it has been made up on the run and the different 'Margarets' are poorly written. Tepper's message is lost in over-writing and the entire effect is underwhelming. I'll eagerly await Tepper's next novel...and hope it's a worthier book than The Margarets.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 15, 2011 8:53 PM GMT

by Eric Brown
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Price: £7.99

9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars So much wrong but much to like..., 3 July 2007
This review is from: Helix (Mass Market Paperback)
There is so much wrong with Helix but there is also much to like. The central conceit of the story - that there is a huge, helical structure that houses thousands of cylindrical worlds - would lead one to expect a 'hard' SF novel but that isn't the case. The titular helix is a feat of imagination and not one of engineering and Brown clearly has no idea (or concern for) how or why it was built or even why the structure is a helix rather than any other shape. His characters are lazy constructions that rely on silly coincidences to generate personalities. The background stories pad out the tale to no effect. Pages of set up regarding Hendry's daughter all come to nought. The Kaluchek/Olembe dynamic is played out over 500 pages and then negates itself when the basis of their conflict is discovered to be false. These are all faults that could have been resolved with some editorial direction and the excision of a hundred or so pages.

The curious thing is that, even with all these gripes, Helix is enjoyable. It's fast paced, cinematic and wondrous. The reader is carried along at such a rate that faults are smoothed over due to the sheer speed of the narrative. Read as Space Opera (as opposed to Science Fiction) it is entertaining and engrossing.


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