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This was a re-read, but you wouldn't have known it by looking at the contents of my brain, because after about fifteen years, I hardly remembered anything about the book. I knew it was something about Byron, Shelley, Keats, a woman with multiple personalities, and the most unusual spin on the vampire concept that I'd ever seen, but none of the details stayed with me (and I blame my brain, not the quality of the book).

This was another excellent example of the way Powers takes real events and people in history, and weaves absolutely wild and crazy, well-plotted stories around them in a way that makes it seem like the real, and much more interesting, story was never recorded in the history books. It also contains the elements that are common to so many of his stories--guilt, dead wives, the drinking of lots of alcohol, and characters who are heavily abused, but redeemed in the end.

You know I think Powers is a fantastic writer, if you've been hanging around here for very long, so understand that the one minor poke I'm going to take at his writing style is offered with love and more love. There's this feature of his earlier work that can be a bit distracting, and that's the way he uses pauses, followed by... italics, so as to emphasize certain words and sound a bit mysterious. When done too many times throughout a novel, that style choice can come across as self-conscious, and rather... Shatner-like, at least when I hear it inside my head. That was a feature of this book. I think that he's toned it down in his last few novels. I would still recommend this book to people who like dark fantasy, and you'll get a special kick out of it if you're interested in the Romantic poets and/or vampires.

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
madisonmassage
Aug. 29th, 2007 03:10 pm (UTC)
only been here a short time
you have an offcial addict to your LJ, you are like a walking talking book reviewing machine...

thanks
nayad
Aug. 29th, 2007 03:15 pm (UTC)
Re: only been here a short time
Thank you! :)
madisonmassage
Aug. 29th, 2007 03:12 pm (UTC)
Quick question
Have you read anything by David Gemmell?
I've just started reading some of his novels and wondered what you thought of him and if you had any opinions on which of his books are more worthwhile than others..
nayad
Aug. 29th, 2007 03:17 pm (UTC)
Re: Quick question
No, I haven't read anything by David Gemmell. Now I'll have to look him up. :)
madisonmassage
Aug. 30th, 2007 01:43 pm (UTC)
Re: Quick question
He has written twenty books or so. His lastest work is a series based in ancient Greece and Troy. The first in the series is Lord of the Silver Bow. I read it thought it was pretty good. I've also read an older book of his called the Lion of Macedon, the main character is Parminion, the man who was Phillip of Macadon and Alexander the Great's general. He seems to do a nice job of writing a wide range of both male and female characters witch very diverse personalities, while still keeping them all feeling realisitc. When I'm reading an novel and a character acts or speaks in a way that does seem in line with the rest of their actions it kind yanks me right out of the story...
bzdchris
Aug. 29th, 2007 04:11 pm (UTC)
Shatner-like, huh? Well, that could be interesting, I suppose. I'm not much of a fiction reader, especially fantasy or SF, but I do enjoy reading your reviews.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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