Metro 2034 by Dmitry Glukhovsky

Metro 2034 (METRO, #2)Metro 2034 by Dmitry Glukhovsky
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I’m so disappointed. I liked the setting of Metro, I still do, but Metro 2034 didn’t live up at all to what Metro 2033 was.

Where do I start?
Metro 2033 might have been a bit on the slow side, but this was was super slow. The start of the book was a bit more promising, but as we got further into the book, and more towards the end, it just became a train-wreck.

I missed Artyom. I liked to see more of Hunter, though, and he might have been a great MC had it not all turned out so lame. The fact that we never really got into his head was what ruined it, I think, because by the end he just sounded kind of nuts, and I’m sure he was meant to be just a little more profound than that.

The setting is still interesting, but there is little told of interest about it anymore. The trek through the stations doesn’t hold the same mystery, nor the same sense of impending danger (monsters, humans or otherwise), and there’s nothing new to discover. In fact, there’s even little old to re-discover, too.

Homer was a potentially interesting but somewhat annoying character. Like Hunter, I found him ok too at the start and completely lost interest in his developments as he started philosophizing more.
Sasha I utterly hated. Boring, whiny, (view spoiler), and just stupid. Wait, there’s an acronym for that: TSTL.

Leonid was yet another completely annoying and obnoxious character. (view spoiler)

The story was… wait, was there a story? Hm.

So, basically, I could relate with precisely NO character and was hoping half of them would just die already. It really is a pity; I had high expectations on this one, but it failed to deliver up to the standards it had set with 2033. I was hoping for more background, more story, more fantasy – but instead I got a weird romance-ish novel with a lame love triangle that wasn’t really a triangle and some nonsense story about a viral outbreak that made little sense.

Initially I was going to rate it 3, but I think I’ll settle for a 2.

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Rendezvous With Rama by Arthur C. Clarke

Cita con Rama (Rama, #1)Cita con Rama by Arthur C. Clarke
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Me resulta una tremenda crueldad que el libro terminase sin resolver muchas de las preguntas que saltan al leerlo. Uno podría discutir que este es un libro en el que en realidad no sucede nada, y es que en verdad no “pasa nada” (no hay acción de por sí, ni demasiadas confrontaciones, ni nada por el estilo), es puramente la exploración de Rama. Pero es justamente Rama en sí, los personajes, y la manera en que está escrito que me atrapó por completo, y ya quisiera tener los otros libros para ver si proveen las respuestas a las preguntas que me han quedado.
La frase final del libro ciertamente promete.

Lo único que no me gustó fue (view spoiler), un cliché un tanto cansino, y el cual podría haber sido obviado ya que a mi parecer no aportó nada a la historia y me resultó más molesto que otra cosa. Pero fueron solo un par de capítulos, y bastante cortos.

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Horror, Dark & Lite 2 by Anel Viz

Horror, Dark & Lite Volume TwoHorror, Dark & Lite Volume Two by Anel Viz
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I liked this one better than volume one.

“A Layover at… ” was simple, to the point and cool.

“Coffee and Aftershave” kind of weirded me out. I wasn’t satisfied with the ending, but the story was still cool, and I liked it well enough.

“Bryce Olson is Pregnant” I was so glad (view spoiler). The ending made me laugh (I’m not sure if it was the point of the story, but I laughed anyway).

“The Stray” was just super cute in a weird kind of way, (view spoiler)

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El Reinado de las Sombras by Susana R. Presta

El Reinado de las SombrasEl Reinado de las Sombras by Susana R. presta
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

El libro en si es muy corto. La historia sonaba muy interesante, más de una vez me hubiese gustado que expandiera mucho más en lo acontecido durante un tiempo. Por desgracia queriendo abarcar todo lo que abarcó en tan pocas páginas terminó más bien sonando a resumen o a varios cuentos cortos del mismo universo.
Ojalá hubieran sido varios libros contando bien la historia.

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Metro 2033 by Dmitry Glukhovsky

Metro 2033Metro 2033 by Dmitry Glukhovsky
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Of the ones I’ve read (which admittedly aren’t that many), there isn’t a single book by a Russian author that isn’t packed chock-full of descriptions, long confusing names and equally confusing locations (this has more to do with me being unused to their naming fashion than anything else, though). Metro 2033 is not much different: I found many of the station names a tad confusing until about halfway through the book, and I kept mixing them up. The descriptions were extensive, but pleasant despite the very lousy translation. If you like the subject and you read it properly, it will really transport you to their world of darkness. I did take a bit to start really getting into it though.
Alongside the detailed (if sometimes confusing because of the bad translation) descriptions of physical places came the heavy description of politics, mostly on a per-station basis. It was obvious each little station had their own world, ways of behaving and politics to follow. This too was a bit confusing to me at first, and I couldn’t help but feel slightly identified when Artyom felt totally in the dark about matters mentioned.

The story is pretty basic, but quite enjoyable- not because of the story or the characters itself, but because of the way the world is painted for us. The characters could have had more depth, though (or rather, been developed more as they traveled the metro lines), and the religious cults Artyom encountered did quite a bit to make me feel quite uncomfortable and nervous. Man, would I have run the opposite way!

And what happened to Khan? I sure hope we get to see more of him in book two- he was a bit of a wacky dude, but I liked him.

(view spoiler)

The Kremlin thing didn’t seem very well explained to me anyhow.
Was the underground goo-thing that powerful that, whomever stared the way of the surface-Kremlin was drawn to it by it? Or was the surface-Kremlin a different thing from the underground-Kremlin? And what about the shining rubies or whatever?
Was the goo-thing really a biological weapon or just another mutation?

And the part with Oleg dying, after all they had gone through to get the boy- that felt just like a low blow. Couldn’t they have just saved the kid at the last minute? I admit I was hoping he’d die or something because I really hate disobedient kids that get everyone else in troubles, buuuut it felt bad he did die because it was a dumb death and I actually liked his father. I saw no sense in him ‘reacting’ just when the kids jumped. It felt lame. (hide spoiler)]

At any rate, I loved the book, and I definitely want to read more of the story.

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Magic’s Pawn by Mercedes Lackey

Magic's Pawn (Valdemar: Last Herald-Mage #1)Magic’s Pawn by Mercedes Lackey
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The story was catching and very interesting, I really liked it in the sense of story, though I must admit I disliked the writing style. Still, it was not the worse I have read, and once I got used to it I could get by it for the sake of the story.
I loved every single character in the book… except the main character, Vanyel. It felt way over the top, and that his angst could have well been toned down without making him as annoying and difficult to love as I found him to be. I spent 3/4 of the book wanting to slam his head against a wall and that the book would focus on something else.
And that’s the reason why I gave it a simple three stars- it was just above “ok” to me, but I hated the one that appeared as main the most, so I could not come to “really” like it.
I would, however, like to read most of this and recommend it for a simple time passing read.

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Writing Habit Mastery by S. J. Scott

Writing Habit Mastery - How to Write 2,000 Words a Day and Forever Cure Writer’s BlockWriting Habit Mastery – How to Write 2,000 Words a Day and Forever Cure Writer’s Block by S.J. Scott
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Great tips, but sadly nothing new under the sun, as most things said here you can find in just about any blog, for free. It’s a to-the-point book, though, and tries not to beat around the bush on the explanations of the tips and tactics, so that’s nice. A good read if you need to be reminded to just sit and write.
I particularly enjoyed the section on outlining.

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Songmaster by Orscon Scott Card

SongmasterSongmaster by Orson Scott Card
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I was debating between 3 and 4 for a while, because I liked it, but it was a rather sad book, not to mention I liked the first half better than the second. The second felt hurried, and while I was hoping the book would show more of what happened after the point where the short story ended, I was rather disappointed by the happenings themselves. So, 3 it is.
Also, the cover creeps me out. I keep thinking it looks like his life’s being sucked out, rather than him just singing. It’s something about the way the face is painted. I guess it fits the book though.

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42: Deep Thought on Life, the Universe, and Everything by Mark Vernon

42: Deep Thought on Life, the Universe, and Everything42: Deep Thought on Life, the Universe, and Everything by Mark Vernon
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

I feel very special at being the first one to rate this book a one star.

Not really.
The quotations were cool The “brilliant observations” were not (they were also not particularly ‘brilliant’ in my opinion). Too bad, because I really wanted to like this book.
I guess I’m the only one who expected more (fun) out of something with that title. And, you know, the part where it claimed to be “easy and fun to read”…
It was easy, it wasn’t fun. I got bored, I moved on.

Either philosophy books aren’t for me or I’m really choosing all the bad ones.

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