‘Rule of Two’ Book Review

(Since this is a sequel, I am only going to give the description of the first book in the series.)  Des lived a rough life, the son of a miner, that was the life destined for him; to be just like his father. Des has always dreamed of escape, to see the galaxy. He finally gets the chance when he gets into serious trouble and must go on the run. He gets sent to war; he joins the ranks of the Sith army to fight against the Republic. All his talents show in this field and the higher ups know that he is destined for far greater things as the role in the Sith empire. Des does not believe the teachings he is given at the Sith academy and goes against it all to find his on role in the galaxy.

I am stunned by this one. In the review for first installment in the series, I will leave a link below, I said that the authors know how to develop a character. In this one, absolutely not. The problem for me was that I had no connection to Zannah, whatsoever. She is the character that is getting the most page time, but I felt like her actions were random and she was one dimensional. I did not hate her, but I did not know enough about her to care. Bane is the one who carried the first book and his development in that was excellent but in this one that is just not the case.

‘Rule of Two’ is not as atmospheric as the first novel but we did get to explore some new worlds. I really liked one of the planets, it seemed to be inspired by Italy by its politics and a few other hints. We also got to see some places that anyone familiar with Star Wars would know, like Coruscant.

 The writing was typical. It was fast and easy to read, I thank God for that because I do not know if I could have gotten through this book otherwise.

I really liked how this started off exactly where the previous book left off. That makes it easier for the reader to adjust and remember the events of the previous story. Again, I felt like the plot was all over the place much like the actions of the characters.

This was a disappointing read as I have loved and enjoyed all the other books that I have read from this author. Bane is the one who carried the first book and his development in that was excellent but in this one that is just not the case. ‘Rule of Two’ is not as atmospheric as the first novel but we did get to explore some new worlds. The writing was typical. I really liked how this started off exactly where the previous book left off. Nevertheless, I will continue the series and my journey of reading every Star Wars book in chronological order.

2 out 5 stars.

My review for the first book: https://izzyreads.blog/2021/05/15/path-of-destruction-book-review/

‘Horus Rising’ Book Review

The empire of man has been expanding and crusading for nearly a thousand years, but it is finally coming to an end. The emperor has returned to earth and has left the war in the hands of his Warmaster to tie all the loose ends.

We focus on Loken, who is a newly appointed captain in the military, and then a few remembrancers, who are put in place to show the war through their kind of art rather it be photography, poetry, or some other format. This was interesting getting to have the interviews between Loken and his remembrancer, Mersaide, we really got to see him come to terms with the war and overall develop as a character as he was thinking back on his past actions. It was a great way to show development.

Abnett did a great job at putting the reader into the setting. His writing was very descriptive and atmospheric. I did not expect this writing style for a book that is based on another form of media. Each planet that the soldiers or remembrancers visited was unique and they never felt repetitive.

As stated in the section dedicated to the atmosphere; this book had a descriptive writing style that never felt like it was too long or too much on the page for the reader to grasp. the pace of the story was quick, and it is hard to believe that the book was over four hundred pages in length. I would pick up a book by Dan Abnett again in the future simply for his writing style. It is perfect for the fantasy and science fiction genres.

The plot was where this was lackluster for me. For the first thirty percent of the story, I had no idea what was happening. I started taking notes from there and to my understanding we are following a captain who is unsure of what he is fighting for and coming to terms that the empire might not be all that it is made out to be. I think he is too intelligent for his position, at least from my understanding of the story. I did not connect with this plot. At first, I thought it might be because I have never played the video game series that this story is based on, but I read other reviews to find out that it does not matter if you have played the game or not. So have at is as you will.

Abnett really knows how to develop a character and have the development shown in a unique way that is intriguing to the reader. He can also drop the reader right onto an alien planet and make them feel like they have seen that place before. The plot had themes of war, religion, or lack thereof, and coming to terms with what one believes in. Sadly, I could not get into the story. This was another average read for me which seems to be a theme with the books on my TBR this January.

3 out of 5 stars

‘Runaway Max’ Book Review

A somewhat prequel to Stranger Things, we will get to that, all about our favorite skater, Max. This story shows what Max’s life is like before she moves to Hawkins and then what her first months in Midwest, Indiana are like. We really get to know her more as a character as she is the main character in this novel and not a side one like on the Netflix series.

Character development is the high point of this book. If you have not seen the show then this would be irrelevant for you and I think for this installment in the books you have to see the show to enjoy the book. Max is a new side character in Stranger Things 2 but in this book she is the main character, it is at her point of view. We get to learn so much about her especially, and then her step brother, Billy. I think it would be awesome if we get more of these books that are from the point of view of side characters and during the events of the show because we get to learn their thoughts and then see what they are doing in scenes that they are not included in. I really hope we get more of these. I cannot wait to read Rebel Robin.

The previous Stranger Things books all take place outside of Hawkins in such places as Bloomington and New York City. This one actually takes places mainly in our beloved small town in Indiana. I loved that we actually got to read something in Hawkins as it just makes the book feel all the more like Stranger Things. We do get some scenes that flashback to Los Angeles and San Diego but those are necessary for the character building and I enjoyed those as well as it helps show why Billy and Max are the way that they are.

The writing in this really felt like the reader was hearing Max’s thoughts. I could truly see this being Max’s perspective. Sometimes it is hard to translate that coming from a show or movie and then making a book adaptation but the author does a fantastic job here. It was easy to read and fast paced. The chapters did get longer towards the end but it was never a hassle to get through them.

The plot is where this might fall short for some readers. This book is advertised as a prequel to Stranger Things but it’s really a few flashbacks before the fall of 1984. I would consider this a contemporary to season two as we are mainly seeing the events of season two, of the show, through Max’s eyes. This might be repetitive to readers and they might find the book as a waste of time as they had already seen these events play out.

I really enjoyed this installment in the Stranger Things books. Max was already one of my favorite characters and this just made her feel a little bit more relatable. (I still think Robin is the character I relate to the most by the Rebel Robin podcast.) We really get to see Max develop through this story and we get to see how her relationship with Billy got to point it is at and why they are so tense with one another. The reader also gets to immerse themselves into Hawkins as that has not been done in any of the previous books, it feels like home in a way. This book was fast paced but I would not say thrilling, I almost wanted to binge read it but I stood my ground and kept my read a book in three days going. The plot might throw some readers off but I thought it added more to season two as we got to see it through another set of eyes.

4 out of 5 stars.

Check out my Youtube channel to see my thoughts on the other Stranger Things books: https://www.youtube.com/user/GlitzGlamGal55

Or if you prefer Facebook you can do so there: https://www.facebook.com/izzyrain729

‘Into the Drowning Deep’ Book Review

The Atargatis set sail in 2015 in search of mermaids. The crew was made up for a mockumentary for the Imagine TV Network. The channel had been known of making these kind of shows on different cryptids but none had ever gone as dark as the voyage of the Atargatis, the whole crew vanished, killed by these mermaids of the Mariana Trench in the Pacific Ocean. Seven years later, a new crew has set out to find out what happened to the previous ship.

The cure for anything is saltwater… tears, sweat, or the sea.

Isak Dinesen

Some wanted fame, others revenge, proof that they were always right, or simply just to follow their studies or career. Everyone on this ship had a mission. The characters in this book were so real. They all had their flaws and might I add that they were all morally grey, in my opinion. I was constantly thinking someone would turn on the other. This was a really diverse cast be it, disability, race, or sexual orientation. There was lots of representation here. All these characters had a purpose, Tory was probably the main character but the others did not feel like they were pushed to the side either. The characters in this book are going to get a five out of five from me.

Mankind’s exploration of the oceans had been going on for centuries, yet barely scratched the surface, leaving much of the depths uncharted.

Chapter Nine

The atmosphere was so creepy and that is just what a horror novel needs. In general, boats being in the middle of the ocean freak me out anyway and then the author adds in killer mermaids. Just the thought of being in the middle of the Pacific, in a very desolate part of the ocean might I add, knowing that there are things that want to harm all the humans around you.. that is horrifying. Mira Grant hit the atmosphere nail right on the head. Once again a five out of five.

When I first started this book, the writing was so great. Probably the best I had read in months. However, that rating started to drop when we got into the science bits. Yes, this book is about a lot of scientist on a vessel but sometimes it was like reading another language and I found myself skimming. The writing just got heavy at the science bits but at the other parts it was great! Four our of five stars.

I had only read one book before this that was set on a boat and it was a thriller, not a horror. Boat books are just so unique. I really liked how this voyage was to solve a mystery of the past ship and then the mystery that humans have had for centuries, are mermaids real? Add in the fact, that all these characters had different motives. They were all seeking something different rather it be closure of a family member who was on the Atargatis or it be to bring a new creature into the realm of biology. Sometimes their motives changed throughout the voyage. Grant very much so did her research for this book, it just felt so real. I could totally see this happening in real life. You really feel like that you are put into this story, the plot gets a five star.

Intrigue is something that I find so important in horror, mystery, or thriller novels. You are trying to find out what is behind all of this or what is going to happen next. I was always making theories with this one but a lot of the time my theories came out to be wrong! That just shows that Mira Grant is so intelligent with her writing, she had ideas that I was not even thinking of. I do not know how I felt about the ending though. I wanted to know more about how the characters felt after everything on the ship wrapped up. I am not sure if there will be a sequel, at this time. Four out of five stars.

If this book was one thing it was logical. Often times in the CAWPILE system, I never know what to say about the ‘L’ part of the acronym. ‘Into the Drowning Deep’, does not leave me skipping over this category, though. Everything was so well thought out. The paragraph structure and everything was just so logical. It is a heavy read but you learn so much about different kinds of study that fall into the marine category. 5/5.

I did enjoy this book, I think all of you who have read this blog post can see that. I enjoyed that all the characters were so different and even though there was a large cast, I was never getting them confused. The atmosphere was so creepy and fit perfect with the black and red cover of the book. The writing was great but it was heavy at times which was the main downfall for me but I think if you have a career path in the science or field of if it is just something you are interested in then you would not have the same problem that I did. The plot was unique and this would make the perfect movie, someone really needs to pick this up. I was constantly trying to find out what would happen next and it never felt like a drag to pick up but I am lightly disappointed in the ending. This book was smart, too smart at times but it just made it all the more realistic. I will be picking up more books from this author.

The final rating for this book is a 4.5 star out of 5.

Be sure to check out my Youtube channel here: Izzy Rain – YouTube