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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An emptiness within...., 20 Jun 2012
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This review is from: Fevre Dream (Fantasy Masterworks 13) (Paperback)
George RR Martin's Fevre'd dream can only be described a tale of steamer trading in the south cross bred with a re imagined vampire tale. For the most part it is a successful synergy that brings two completely abstract worlds together and leads the story down a path of self discovery, redemption and understanding. The discovery is the journey that takes the characters into a murky future, not only for the future of the vampires but for the races of people and for the future of steam boating. The redemption comes in the nature of the vampires seeking a new way to live with humans, the whites to life with blacks, etc. And the understanding is despite all the external differences people are people and all aspects and spectrums can understand each other and where they are coming from.

Of course in life there is no such thing as a straight path and the way forward leaves uncertainty, twists and a large degree of sadness. Some people claim this book as a horror... I disagree there is a large amount of tension but nothing really that incites terror, to be honest the main villains of the book where tragically pathetic in there own way (more on that later).
It is however a book that will incite emotion as 'some' of the character depictions and portrayal are fantastic. Most prevalent above all is the protagonist Abner Marsh who was quite a surprise choice but ultimately a fantastic one. His course manner, huge levels of impatience and brutal honesty makes him instantly lovable, the key in this book is that his strength is his personality and that what makes the finale of the book work so well. While others are too weak to fight he almost suicidally throws himself into mortal danger for the sake of friendship and his boat.

Where the story fails is the one dimensionality of the other characters propping up the main characters. They are to accepting of everything and truly do not add to realism. A good example is on how hairy Mike and the clerk receive the revelation of the true identity but did not react in anyway that can be deemed realistic. They just followed suit as to everything they are told.
The seconend problem was complete inadequacy of the main villain Julian. He is a man that showed initial potential inhumane, strong & deadly, manipulative and a man with strong idealogical beliefs. However this is just a facade of an empty husk, his beleifs of humans serving him in everything even thought has made him useless to the point of being invalid. The true villain Billy makes up for Julian's failures but is such a perfectic thrall that I had more sympathy for him than any for of hatred.
Futhermore the story kept jumping from 1st person to third person with gaps in plot being filled by hearsay and rumours, a nasty habit that Mr Martin has
Ultimately the story fizzled out and where left with just an empty hole where the emotion should be when the story ends... it also feels like a story of crushed dreams, loneliness and sadness... and I truly dont think the author intended that.
An interesting and beautifully compiled concept, but ultimately an incomplete piece of work.
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 22 Jun 2012 17:29:07 BDT
Book Beaver says:
A superb synopsis. There have been occasional rumours over the years of a sequel but I can't see how it could match the quality of this excellent book which I don't feel is as unfinished as you suggest.

Posted on 27 Jun 2012 16:31:47 BDT
Obisearch says:
To to clear up my previous comment about unfinished work. It is more to do again with the disappointment of Julian and the plot after he had wrestled control of Fevre from marsh and York. I was expecting a more grandiose finale with Julian actually trying to achieve something for his people using his twisted ideology. But no he spends his time hiding from the cattle he looks down upon.As a writing 101, I was expecting something grandeur rather than .... well pathetic really..

Posted on 1 Mar 2013 11:00:47 GMT
Sarah Fisher says:
I'm about two thirds through the book at the moment (having cheated a bit and skipped through some passages futher on) and I must admit I'm not enjoying it as much as I thought I would and the one-dimensional quality of some of the supporting characters is something I certainly recognise.

From reading all the other reviews I thought I was missing something, but you've echoed some of my feelings about the book's "completeness".
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