Top critical review
2 people found this helpful
on 20 June 2014
I was a bit disappointed in this sequel. I found the first book to be an entertaining, light read, which suffered from a lack of female characters and a society of male geeks that didn't really ring true. I was hoping the sequel would address these points, as I knew it was set in the female society of Atlantis.
First the good - if you enjoyed the first book there is nothing in the sequel that is going to spoil the series for you, it is largely more of the same in terms of style, plot and characterisation.
For me, I would say that is the main problem. The first book was fun as the premise and characters were novel, but by book two I felt it needed to branch off in some new directions or gain a layer or two of depth.
Instead, we get a society run by females that feels even less plausible than the men's mediaeval society. For example, there is a one-note joke about the women surrounding themselves with buff man-toys who spend their days looking pretty and having spa treatments, which fell rather flat for me the first time, let alone the tenth.
Then there is a mystery to solve, that is too reminiscent of the first book.
The magic system is expanded upon, and at least the women use it in more interesting ways than the men - but there are not really any ideas that thrilled me with their originality - if anything I found myself wondering why with almost limitless power they were so unimaginative.
The romance could have been the saving grace, as the main characters are likeable, but it felt clumsy rather than sweet to me.
A major time-travelling plot point is based around the character of Brit and this is quite interesting. The internal logic of the way time travelling operates isn't consistent though, which I found detracted from my enjoyment. I know it's first and foremost a comedy book, but I couldn't help but think "that's not right!" in a few places - maybe I'm overthinking it :-).
Finally, the brooding presence of book one's villain culminates in a somewhat muted finale, that I found unsatisfying. I'm guessing the author is setting things up for a more involved book three. Unfortunately, as is often the case, it's come at the cost of the second book feeling like a bit of a stop-gap.
In conclusion then, if, like me, you enjoyed the story and characters from the first book, check this out but don't expect too much from it. And let's hope for a much stronger book three!