Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Anarchy: A Novel by James Treadwell (2013)

I hate series and sequels.

I'm not disappointed in this book; I just couldn't fucking remember what happened in Advent (book 1).

Unlike Anarchy (which I purchased for my kindle) I don't own Advent.  I checked it out from the library. I may have even asked the library to purchase a copy so I could read it (I have this power!  It's gobsmackingly amazing that I'm in the position after 17 years or so as a librarian to ask for a book and have the collection development folks BUY IT; but I digress [regress?]... anyway).

So when I started having memory lapses on how Advent ended - or even anything about it at all, I was annoyed to say the least.  I vaguely remembered that I enjoyed Advent and that it reminded me of Susan Cooper's The Dark is Rising. I also know I have attempted to read The Dark is Rising series since I last read Advent, and never finished it, because I didn't like it as much as I remembered liking it.  I think this series (Goodreads calls it the "Advent trilogy" but if it actually stays at three books I will pay you a dollar).

Now because I don't actually own Advent, I couldn't immediately go take a look at it to see how it ended (or, everything else).  And, of course, it was checked out.  So I had to place a hold on it and wait.  Meanwhile, I started reading Anarchy even though I didn't know what the hell was going on.

And then I finally got Advent.  But you know what - by that time I didn't care anymore.  It's not that the book is a badly written book - it just drags. When a book drags in a good way, it's lyrical and suspenseful, and I think that this could have been that type of book save for one missing piece.    I think if there had been at least a "morris the explainer" in the first chapter to thread the Advent to Anarchy, I probably would have kept reading.  But you know what?  It started to annoy me that this wasn't the case.  I felt guilty I didn't remember, and that made me want to stop reading the book.

It takes some hubris on an author's part to think that people can remember every stinkin' detail from their previous books.

Or maybe other people can do that, and I'm just a shitty reader.

Also, this book series isn't good enough to warrant that level of detailed remembering in the first place.

In the end, bah, humbug to Anarchy.

(maybe I will pick this up again in the future; I doubt it, but you never know).

Anarchy: A Novel (Advent Trilogy #2)Anarchy: A Novel by James Treadwell

I'm trying not to review books I don't finish, but for this one, I just couldn't help myself. I can go back on Goodreads and in my blog and see that I enjoyed reading Advent, the first book in this series. Anarchy reminds me why I don't like reading series though. Treadwell could have made the two into one long, epic book (there is a third coming, and I'm sure a fourth and fifth and so on...). Instead, he begins Anarchy without any sort of "morris the explainer" to remind us what happened in the last book and I, for one, was completely lost. And of course, I couldn't get hold of Advent in order to refresh my memory. Some series have stand alone entries, or nearly stand alone entries; sometimes series build from book to book. This one did that but so clumsily (and so full of hubris, in my mind) that I just finally gave up.This book series just isn't good enough to warrant detailed remembering that it was going to take (me at least) to read book one and then a year or so later, read book 2. There aren't very many that are (maybe Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. I will say that Anarchy is well written (although it does drag, particularly if you have no idea what the hell is going on). But I don't want to have to go back and re-read the first one in order to understand the second book.

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