Book 1 of the First Law Trilogy
The Blade Itself is high on characterization, low on world building. I didn’t fall into the story, but once I was finished, I bought the next two books in the series, so there must be something right. Each character is well fleshed out, each with their own motivations and they act accordingly. There is no one who wears the white hat here, everyone feels like a real person and not a trope. This book felt like it was only to set up for the rest of the story as we follow several people in their own arcs, but there is no real overarching plot. I’m a plot driven person.
The Body: A Guide for Occupants
Being of a certain age (50), I’m naturally inclined to learn about which muscle, organ and/or system is going to go on the fritz next. I come at aging with curiosity, not dread so I’m always on the lookout for a book to tell me what I have to look forward to. The book has an entertaining style and the many systems of the body are described in a light, humorous way. It’s great for tidbits, not rigorous like a text book. I could probably listen to it again next month and find new nuggets that my mind glossed over the first time. Enjoyable, but not a must read, unless you’re falling apart like me.
Writer, Sailor, Soldier, Spy
I’ve always been interested in learning more about Ernest Hemingway. The book is well written and focuses on his philosophy and the ways in which he acted upon it. The civil war in Spain in the 1930s gave him his hatred for fascists and his support for the little guy (especially against conservative powers). I don’t think I would have liked the man, but his life was interesting and the rationale for why he did what he did is logically consistent. I just don’t share his opinions. In an age where people are canceled for not conforming exactly to whatever ridiculous norms are being set day by day, it was refreshing to read about a larger than life personality who did it his way.
The Farseer: Assassin’s Apprentice
I’m on the fence about this book. The writing was good, much better than mine, but it had no plot. It read like a string of interesting scenarios but it didn’t build to a climax. I was 80% of books in the series are better, so I’ll read further in this series.