22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
A bit let down,
This review is from: Ysabel (Paperback)
I, too, look forward eagerly to each new GGK book release and the latest was no exception.
However, despite his usual mastery of language and some gorgeous descriptions of the area around Provence, I found it hard to connect with the characters in this book. When you look at the depth of characterisation in some of his other work (The Lions of Al-Rassan or Tigana for example), it really brings home how most of the protagonists are only lightly drawn with the broadest of strokes.
Sadly, the plot also felt a little on the light side - a lot of questions were raised but then many allowed to fall by the wayside and ignored. Perhaps Kay was having too good a time researching in Provence to focus to the level he is capable of?!
Still, that said, it's still an enjoyable read but if this is your first foray into Kay's work, you might prefer to start with some of his earlier works instead to get a true impression of what he's capable of.
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Initial post: 15 Dec 2009 14:32:41 GMT
I feel exactly the same way. I love GGK's work and was quite surprised that this book was quite entertaining but not touching in the way his earlier books were. Or let's say: This, alongside Last Light of the Sun, is the only GGK book that failed to make me cry - ok, I was a little moved at the end but that was nothing in comparison to my reaction to the last 20 pages of Lions. When reading those, I could barely see the pages because everything was blurry. Ysabel somehow lacked that quality; I didn't really care about the characters as much as I cared for, say, Jehane and Ammar or Crispin or Diarmuid. The same thing had happened before, with Last Light of the Sun. Like you, I don't think either book is a good introduction to GGK for new readers; especially Ysabel leaves many questions unanswered and seems to presume that people have read the Fionavar Tapestry in order to understand the allusions.
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