21 June 2007

Review: Step On A Crack by James Patterson & Michael Ledwidge

Step On A Crack by James Patterson & Michael Ledwidge book coverReading a James Patterson novel is always a pleasure as the pages fly by, the font is easy going, and the chapters are so short, you just keep on reading and before you know it, you've finished. Step on a Crack was no different.

Writing in collaboration with Michael Ledwidge, Patterson introduces the reader to the new character Detective Bennett in this new series. The lead character is reminiscent of Alex Cross in so many ways, but equally enjoyable. I enjoyed the plot, and it was quick paced and had a happy ending. It was pure Patterson, and I enjoyed the 'quick read', especially after reading Cryptonomicon (see previous blog entry).

Having just read a highly intellectual tome, it is hard to give this any more than three stars, but I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys Patterson.

My rating = ***

Carpe Librum!
12 June 2007

Review: Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson

I've been reading Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson for several months now, and what a mammoth task it's been! I've had to take a break and read other books in between, but I'm thrilled to say I've finally finished!!! Well, what was it about? That's difficult to say, but here goes: multiple plots, set in present time and World War II, it's both science fiction and historical fiction. Theme is cryptology, a difficult subject at best, and the themes of war, business and politics were in there, to name a few.

Neal Stephenson is a literary genius, and I can't imagine how he kept track of all the plots, sub-plots, characters, and the level of information is amazing. It's not often that I laugh out loud in a book, but I did so every time I picked up the book, and some of the jokes have stayed with me. I was also shocked by the boldness and scene depictions, which will also stay with me.

The fact that the book is >900pgs long, and printed in small typeface, made it tough going, and the feeling of satisfaction when I finish reading a book was denied me whilst I was reading this doorstop of a novel. I think I would have read it quicker were it broken down into 3 novels, but that's just a personal opinion.

Would I recommend it? Well, that's difficult. I enjoyed it yes, but would only recommend it if you are happy to spend the time required, and can handle the technical references which are extremely detailed and at an extremely high level. Stephenson's vocabulary is to be admired, and I loved the many different references and language of different characters, I really don't know how he does it.

I am in awe, but don't think I'll tackle any of his other books this year.

My rating = *****

Carpe Librum!