Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop All Amazon Fashion Cloud Drive Photos Shop now Learn More Shop now DIYED Shop now Shop Fire Shop Kindle Oasis Listen in Prime Shop now Shop now

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars78
4.2 out of 5 stars
Format: Kindle Edition|Change
Price:£3.49
Your rating(Clear)Rate this item


There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

on 11 April 2016
Fluency seems to be one of those books that polarises people. Either they love it, or they hate it. There's not too much middle ground. The criticism revolves mostly around the fact that the most active, problem-solving, point-of-view is a woman. It's not realistic! She's a special snowflake! It's all romance! The men are emasculated! Wah! Kick, scream, throw rattle!

Right, sure. Like it would be any more realistic if the main POV was male. Nobody would be complaining about a male hero's ability to communicate with alien intelligences or climb into battle armour and blow hell out of acidic space slugs. Get over it, fellas. Go back to your basements.

Fluency is a good First Contact adventure story. Not a brilliant one, but neither is it so terrible as to deserve all those brickbats. Wells has dressed her team of explorers with the trappings of a near-future hard SF tale, with references to PLSS and uncomfortable zero-g lifestyles. It's not always as successful as it ought to be, but the real objective here is to show how out on a limb they are, how isolated and up against it. The main focus of the exploration is on the problem-solving and the world-building, effectively setting up a massive interstellar conflict to be explored in future volumes.

Holloway is a decent lead character. She isn't the absolute Mary-Sue some of the reviewers have made her out to be, having realistic limitations and learning curves. Her opposite number, Alan Bergen, also the tentative love interest, on the other hand, is a contrary, moody bugger. There's an effective role reversal here and the gripers might well be complaining about that. My main issue is that the whole team itself, having spent the best part of a year in a tight space travelling to the artifact, just don't gel together at all. If I was Mission Control, I'd never have put those five in space together.

It's not entirely satisfying, but it's certainly a good adventure story, and I'm interested to see where it goes from here.
0Comment|4 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 27 October 2014
Weak book. A selection of well worn Star Trek clichés stuck together with cardboard cut out characters. Oh and dialogue like "she was... like a blond laura croft". I gave up after that line.
0Comment|6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 5 January 2015
For a first SF novel this was very good, an excellent story line that has huge potential for development. I was hooked by the main character(how good that we have a female lead for a change). The main fault that I encountered was the rather cardboard and one dimensional male characters, not all of us are boneheads! Even though set some way in the future no serious government agency would ever let such a deeply flawed character as Walsh anywhere near a space programme. That said all I can add is please can we have the second installment?
0Comment|3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 7 October 2014
Very well written and intelligent sci-fi novel. The characters are deep and well thought out. They have flaws and seem 'real' rather than staged caricatures.

The science is spot on. None of it feels like it is simply made up to fit a dead end.

Read it through far too quickly and now have a wait for the second book in the series!
0Comment|3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 6 August 2014
I really enjoyed this book although I felt some bits left me wanting to know more. The story is very interesting and I like Jane. I did think the other characters weren't fleshed out enough though. I am looking forward to reading more from this author. HURRY PLEASE!
0Comment|3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 12 November 2014
Two things : 1) Not to my taste, too geekie and I grew up with Bradbury, Sturgeon, Asimov etc.- just thought I'd give it a try.
2) More seriously, I had no idea the book was part of a series and felt conned by the abrupt ending.just when I was
finally mustering a little interest in it.
0Comment|8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 1 September 2014
Just finished this and I'm thoroughly impressed. Nice ideas, interesting characters and a plot that thumps along from twist to turn. Thoroughly recommended. I'll happily order up the next one when it arrives.
0Comment|2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 27 September 2014
It's difficult to describe the "good bits" without giving the game away but the story well paced and with enough twists in plot line to keep me turning pages.
0Comment|2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 20 September 2014
It's well written, there's no doubt, but personally speaking there's too much pointless romance, not enough science fiction and too little action. I struggled to finish it, then when I got to the end I wondered where the rest of the story was as it halted so abruptly. Would I buy another? Probably not, but if you like a mills and boon set in space with YA undertones, then fill your boots.
0Comment|10 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 29 April 2015
This was pretty bad. The main character, a supposed brilliant linguist who rescued a failed trip to the Amazon, level-headed and keen, would never, EVER act like she did once she was in the alien craft. It was painful to have to read through the innane and childish romance, especially owing to the character build up that happened before.

It was almost of if once in the alien craft, she became a foppish teenager in both her relationships with the "boys" and as the silly one in the group acting in ways that her character would never do.

Do not read this, it is pretty awufl.
0Comment|5 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

Customers also viewed these items


Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.