Review: The Crown Conspiracy

146902Title: The Crown Conspiracy
Author: Michael J. Sullivan
Pages: 324
Series: The Riyria Revelations #1
Read via: Kindle

Review: Michael J. Sullivan writes some really delightful fantasy stories. Having now finished two of his novels (see my review of Age of Myth) I have a better sense of his overall writing style–charming characters, witty dialogue, swift-moving plots, adventure, humor, wizards, political intrigue, etc. I’ll take that combination any day of the week.

Something else I noted in my prior reading of Sullivan was his ability to construct interesting side characters. Myron, the wide-eyed monk, is another instant classic. Similarly, Royce and Hadrian, the novel’s protagonists, are a very charismatic duo. Their absence from any scene immediately makes it less compelling.

There is certainly a sense of a “long game” being set up in The Crown Conspiracy that will span the six novels of the series, and I’ll certainly be following things through to the end to see how it all unfolds (assuming the books maintain this level of quality).

★★★★¼ out of 5

Review: The Girl with All the Gifts

The_Girl_with_All_the_GiftsTitle: The Girl with All the Gifts
Author: M.R. Carey
Pages: 420
Read via: 
Summary: In zombie-overrun England, Melanie, a child with a unique mutation of a zombie-like virus, is locked away in a cell on an army research base. Scientists believe that her mutation can unlock a cure for the disease running rampant across the world, but their research methods are severe and time is short.  

Review: Melanie provides a very compelling lens through which to view this story. She sees almost nothing of the world, but latches onto every small detail she can from what her teachers or supervisors say. This leads her to discover her otherness and eventually come to grips with it. It’s refreshing to hear the thoughts from the “zombie perspective” rather than the usual survivor story.

My interest in the story started to sag considerably once Melanie and the other characters left the mysterious military base and hit the road. Melanie’s perspective was neglected in a significant way in favor of other less intriguing points of view. The story really thrived as you discovered the world through Melanie’s eyes, so it’s exciting to hear that author M.R. Carey has announced a prequel novel that will hopefully delve deeper into Melanie’s past.

★★★ out of 5