book review: the obsidian blade, and my first arc!

The Obsidian Blade (The Klaatu Diskos, #1)The Obsidian Blade by Pete Hautman

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

E-books have one major disadvantage compared to physical books: as you’re reading, you don’t have a clear idea how close you are to the end. Even if, as I did, you keep periodically checking your progress, (mine was in percentages), being 94.5% finished isn’t physically as clear to me as knowing that I am flipping over the last actual page in a book.

So, this happened:

Me, reading: “… oh wow! Oh, this is getting good! Wow, really?? TOM?! Oh no- what–”
Me, flipping to the next page and reading: “Acknowlegements: there are many people to thank…”
Me, confused: “Oh, I must have somehow skipped the last fifteen or so pages and went straight to the Acknowledgements…”
Me, realizing there are no pages that I’ve skipped: the last sentence I read was the last sentence of the book: “Umm… hang on here… I think I broke this e-reader. It seems to have lost the end of the book??”

… and so on. It honestly took me a few moments to accept the fact that I was at the end of the book. Whereas I’d have been much quicker to believe it if I’d been reading an actual book.

My surprise and shock aside, I enjoyed the second half of this book, once we got to the really interesting time-travelly stuff, more than the beginning, which was a bit slow for me.

There were some really neat ideas that I’d love to read more about, mainly the whole Medicant people- I love the idea that they’ve somehow evolved into a group who communicate entirely through numbers. And apparently the backlash was so great that, in the far far future, they pretty much eschew numbers entirely (i.e. Awn (? can’t remember her name), and her odd, all-night-long stick-tapping version of counting). 
[Tucker showed up at a certain future, someone asked him if he was “pre-numeracy” or something, which tied in nicely once we learned more about the Medicants. (hide spoiler)]

I also would enjoy reading more about the whole diskos technology, and also the weird, maggoty creatures that surround some of them. Not exactly sure about them.

Character-wise, I found Kosh the least interesting. I liked the twists in the Reverend’s character development the most. Lahlia, I wanted to read more about (and also the cat, which was teasingly referred to a few times as an anomaly, but never fully explained).

I thought some of the plot twists were really interesting, although I was disappointed that the end of the biblical story wasn’t really entirely fleshed out. Let’s just say it left me wanting more![(the Medicants were unable to repair Josua, so… what then? They discarded the body, or put it to work in a factory, or it got eaten by those mechanical ants… or what?) (hide spoiler)]

Actually one of the most interesting bits was something mentioned in passing, about the Vikings. I love Vikings, so that was pretty cool. (It’s not a real spoiler, but I didn’t want to write it here in case you like surprises).

All in all, it was a fun read, and I find it particularly funny that I read an e-book version of a book that discusses a Digital Plague. That’s quite perfect.

View all my reviews

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So, my first ARC is the second book in this amazing series!!

cydonian pyramid

Oh yeah!! I recently joined NetGalley, which I discovered through Goodreads. It’s a site that lets book bloggers and reviewers request free e-copies of books – some of which are advanced copies – in exchange for reviews. Sweet deal, right? I decided to give it a try, and so far many of my requests have been accepted (yay). Surrender was one of them.

As soon as I saw that this book was being published soon, I checked if it was on NetGalley for download… and it was! I was pretty doubtful of getting accepted, but this afternoon when I checked my emails it said that I could download the title today! Thanks, awesome publishers at Candlewick Press :)

I’m only on page 56, but let me tell you, it’s going to be awesome. The first book took me a bit to get into, but the start-up of this one was great. After a quick introduction from Tucker’s point of view, it went straight to Lia’s story, and I am engrossed. I don’t think it will take long for me to finish this (I probably couldn’t take my time even if I wanted to), so stay tuned for a review soon! Time-travelly goodness, how I love you.

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