Monday, April 20, 2009

The Reincarnationist

This weekend was a snowy one around my house. I had actually taken Friday off work so we could install three ceiling fans upstairs. Summer is coming fast and we sure wish we had had ceiling fans in the house last year. Well it was a good thought but after picking up all of the parts, etc. we would need for the project, a huge snow storm came through on Friday and most of Saturday. The attic would have been too cold to work up there so we used that as a convenient excuse to have a lazy three day weekend. Creative excuse-making is the key to building leisure time into the schedule but it doesn't lead to timely project completion.

A great time to read right? gamer habits rose to the surface and I spent far more time playing on the computer than I had expected to. You see last week I had finished "Fallout 3", having become the last best hope of humanity and saving the world, and it was now on to my new game, "Empire: Total War". Its an extremely addictive game and I'm loving playing the role of Sweden in the 18th century slowly taking over the known world. I left off last night with the big push towards Paris, after sweeping through Berlin, Poland, and large chunks of Russia as well as gaining a foothold in the New World in Newfoundland. At least I'm not power hungry.

So...I did manage to finish up one book on Saturday morning though before everybody else in the house woke up. M.J. Rose's The Reincarnationist is a fairly fast paced thriller/adventure novel that I really wanted to like. From the cover blurbs it seemed to have all of the elements I was looking for: action, intrigue, a DaVinci Code style plot, etc. And truth be told, I was fairly well engaged over the length of the story. The concept was sound, despite what you may believe about reincarnation. I was sympathetic to the plight of the protagonist. There was some romantic attraction with other characters and there was some cool scenes/flashbacks to ancient Rome.

But the ending was unsatisfactory, to put it politely. The build up was great but the revelations at the very end were not satisfying to me at all and it was over in a heartbeat. We did not get to experience the reactions of the other main characters at all. No sense of real resolution, especially the emotional resolution that is so necessary. But that's not the only unsatisfying thing about this book. Something was missing from the entire novel that I can't quite seem to wrap my head around. It's like the elements of the plot were there but it just didn't grab me by the throat as a good adventure novel should. I think the problem is more characterization than plot; I wondered what would happen to them but I wasn't emotionally connected enough to care. I see from the author's blog that a pilot is being developed from this novel. Who knows where that will go since the quality of a novel and the quality of a tv series/show isn't always parallel. But at this point it's not one of the shows I am looking forward to in the future.

The less than satisfactory ending postponed making a good start on the next book though. I did do some reading on my Native American mythology book before starting Starlight, the fourth book of the Warrior's New Prophecy series by the Erin Hunter writing team. But the lure of conquest keeps drawing me back to the computer. Perhaps tonight will see the sacking of Paris. That should be fairly easy given the size and experience of my armies and the advanced state of my technology. No...what really worries me is the Ottoman Empire down south...

No comments:

Post a Comment

Top 10 Books in no particular order (Well Known Authors)

  • "The Stand" by Stephen King
  • "Kane and Able" by Jeffrey Archer
  • "The Killer Angels" by Michael Shaara
  • "The Dark Elf Trilogy" by RA Salvatore
  • "Name of the Wind" by Patrick Rothfuss
  • "River God" by Wilbur Smith
  • "Mortalis" by RA Salvatore
  • "Ender's Game" by Orson Scott Card
  • "Centennial" by James A Michener
  • "The Repairman Jack" series by F. Paul Wilson

Top Books/ Series in no particular order (Lesser Known Authors)

  • "The Sculpter" by Gregory Funaro
  • "Power Down" by Ben Coes
  • "Revolution at Sea Saga" by James L. Nelson
  • "Black Rain" by Graham Brown
  • "Top Producer" by Norb Vonnegut
  • "Prairie" by Anna Lee Waldo
  • "The Wild Blue" by W. Boyne & S Thompson
  • "Unsolicited" series by Julie Kaewert
  • "Freedom" by William Safire