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Life Descending (The Cry of Havoc, Book 1) by [Hennessy, John]
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Life Descending (The Cry of Havoc, Book 1) Kindle Edition

3.3 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Length: 331 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1415 KB
  • Print Length: 331 pages
  • Publisher: Innovation Today Publishing; 2nd edition (13 Nov. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005JL4W9K
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #28,642 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Customer reviews

3.3 out of 5 stars
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Top customer reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
Authors website: (...)

John Hennessy has written a fantastic fantasy novel as his debut, he has not only created a whole new world but has made it one based on another planet based on our current time, there's also an impressive map to go with it on his website.

The basic premise is that people from our world along with others are being encouraged to kill themselves and are then brought back from the dead into another world. This world has one continent, Gillia, left after a devastating flood in the distant past and has been has been ravaged by incessant wars. The people are being used to re-populate the various nations on the continent.

Enter Tom Navo, he lives in San Francisco, has just killed his boss, doesn't know any of the above and is about to die. He ends up in Gillia and fairly shortly loses his memory of his old life and is sent on an errand and the story really blooms from there on.

I enjoyed wanting to get to the next section as bit by bit the story is unveiled gradually. Some insights into the storyline are unveiled by another character (Ian or Feeble) who is annotating a history for, The Saviour, the main baddie in this book. What more could you want, a huge continent to explore, more secrets to be unveiled, copious amounts of magic and dangerous creatures doing battle.

A note about the writing, whilst reading this the author used words I'd not come across before but luckily on my trusty Kindle they could be looked up without much bother and I always enjoy being introduced to new words. There is also a map of Gillia included in the kindle version but you'd be better off printing off the colour version from the author's own website either tiled onto 4 normal pages or A3 format if you can.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
(Originally posted at Goodreads)

Where to begin? I picked up this book because it was a) free, b) had a neat cover and c) had some intriguing reviews. For those reasons I also finished it (with a lot of skimming) and I feel compelled to review it (critically) in order to help deal with the some confusion and frustration. There was half a chance that the premise could have lead to something good and different, but he only managed the latter...

First, some of the reviews mentioned that the books starts with a guy in San Francisco contemplating suicide. Well, it doesn't: at least, not any more. There is some reference to it in the glossary (!) so I think it must have been in there at one point, but he's re-written chapter one (the writing style is noticeably better) to make it more 'normal'...and in doing so ruined the Thomas Covenant-style premise of the book, along with the real impact of the narrative drive as he struggles to find out what actually happened, and leaves behind a confused mess.

And what a mess it is! Once you get beyond the confusing re-written non-hook, you get schizophrenic writing; clumsy info dumps; wordy, often purple prose; anachronisms that he doesn't even attempt to explain (yes, it's fantasy so you can do whatever you want--within reason, and there is no logic here); overuse of the thesaurus (except for eyes, which are invariably "orbs"); unrealistic dialogue and action; flimsy characters with inconsistent motivation (e.g. if Tom is just trying to get home and collect his pay for his 'day job', why does he care about the politics enough to get involved?) and a plot that often seems to wait in the background instead of driving things on.

Why am I being so harsh?
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Compelling fantasy. 23 Nov. 2012
By Allie - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I received a copy for review, but also picked this up on my kindle. If you are a fan of fantasy/sci-fi, then this is a great choice for you. I found the characters and plot to be well rounded and easily believeable. Please check this title out.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Caught by surprise! 5 Nov. 2012
By Memo - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book was much better than I thought it would be from the description. It is interesting, suspenseful and the plot moves along quickly. The plot was fresh and not predictable as many books are. I would recommend to friends to read it!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's pretty good! 25 Oct. 2012
By Kat - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Okay, this take on the usual sci-fi is a bit strange, but stick with it. It is a very good story and I already ordered the second book so I could continue reading. Great idea and storyline was well conceived. :)
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars looking forward to book 2 8 Feb. 2013
By deb - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
very interesting read, enjoyed reading this book and looking forward to reading book 2. Would defiently give this book 4 stars.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Was hoping for more 24 April 2013
By Wolf, The Alpha - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The book is ok, I was just hoping for more. It's fairly disjointed, I am struggling to keep up with the plot.
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