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Synths and their tangled dreams
I enjoyed this story so freaking much! It reminded me of something from an old pulp fiction magazine, with echoes of inspiration from Harlan Ellison, Isaac Asimov, and William Gibson. The author's dark vision of the future feels all-too real, and his characters are almost frighteningly human. Watching the characters interact with each other was enjoyable, and the plot was layered enough to keep me guessing. I also appreciated how unapologetic the author was, in the graphic nature of the world that he created. Nearly every action from every single one of these characters, except perhaps Mia, was fueled by a sexual agenda, and the majority of it was described with a nearly sociopathic nonchalance. The story reads like a Freudian dream.
There were, of course, some things about the story that bothered me. I'm not going to talk much about the author's grammar or technical skills, since that's the job of the editor. I do, however, wish that the author would use a more professional voice. The story was so flippant and casual that I occasionally felt like I was reading fan fiction.
Nixon's "small breasts" were this novel's version of Bella's "inner goddess". Every time Nixon is in the scene, sometimes multiple times in the same scene, the author goes out of their way to make sure that the reader knows that Nixon has small breasts.
The relationship between Nixon and Steele is manipulative, abusive, shallow, and it enforces the idea that relentless sexual harassment leads to a productive relationship. I'm not suggesting that the author change that, since this is the way those things play out far too often in the real world. I'm simply stating my view of the situation.
Freddie 'The Chip' was my favorite character.
Setting aside my few complaints, I did genuinely enjoy this story.
Caught in the spider's web.
Everyone loves a haunted house/creepy doll story! The concept here is classic, and the story has all the elements of a gripping horror.
I was immediately gripped by the description of the attic, the rocking chair, the doll, and even the spider. The beginning paragraphs are descriptive and captivating, setting the scene and tone well. Wendy has an authentic feel, and her relationship with her parents feels natural. The way which the parents respond to her seems genuine (although, I'm not sure how I feel about her mother, downing shots of whiskey right in front of her, but that's artistic license), and both parents respond to each other in a loving, familial way.
I felt like some of the portions of the story were a bit cumbersome, with paragraphs of description that could have been worked into the story through interaction, rather than just blatant description. That's the old "show, don't tell" adage, though, which every author (myself included) is tired of hearing. It's all personal preference, anyway.
If I could suggest anything to the author, it would be to slow down. This story has all the elements of greatness, but the audience needs to be able to feel the story. They can't do that, if they're racing through the events at light speed. Take some time, brilliant author, and build your characters into the excellent, three-dimensional, people that they deserve to be. Build your scenes: make your world come alive, so that it's a place where readers can find themselves envisioning, living in, and being frightened by. This story is excellent in concept, and I have no doubt that this writer could make it wonderful in execution as well. They simply need to take the time to flesh out the world.
A beautiful story, slightly abbreviated.
I love your story, and the bond that you establish early on, between single father and daughter, feels authentic and true. I enjoyed some of the minor, supporting characters as well, and appreciated the flavors that they added. The voice of the story was very casual, but to say that this story moved quickly would be an exaggeration. With the strength of your story, I am interested in going deeper and getting to know the characters: their motivation, their purpose, and their point of view.
I would have loved to have witnessed the father in his courtroom battle. I wanted to hear the conversations that he was having with his defendant, I needed to know the jurors and the witnesses. I want to know how good of a lawyer this guy really is! If he was able to get his defendant off, he must be good, especially with the evidence against her! Show me how good he is!
Your story is pretty great, and I would love to read more of your work. I simply think you're worth more than an over-simplification. You've got a great skeleton and the necessary materials to add flesh to the bones. Create your masterpiece.
Hard science fiction with it's finger on the pulse of reality
This is an intimidating book. More than once, the thought "I can't believe I'm at the same agency as this guy" passed through my head. The level of detail, accuracy, and intricate knowledge is staggering. I do not envy the writer for the hours of research which he must have put into this project, but I'm certainly glad that he did.
At this point, I'm still reading the story, but I wanted to endorse it as quickly as I could. This book deserves to be read.
When I review a story, I generally like to start with the strengths before moving into the weaknesses. I won't be doing that with this story, since the largest weaknesses are simply preferential. Would Oz have been serving coffee or tea? Would Yoshi really be so attached to his sister, and why are the two of them so invested in each other's love life? Couldn't the assassin have been named something more original? Couldn't Dan and Jodie have... no, Dan and Jodie are pretty much perfect. Those are really my only questions and, like I've said, those are all very little things that can be dismissed.
If I were the writer, I would remove the Dan Brown references. He doesn't deserve to have his name in such a well-researched and artfully written book. This story puts anything that he's written to shame.
To the writer: Thank you. This is a wonderful work, and I'll continue to tell anyone who'll listen about it.
To the reader: Read this book. You will not be sorry.
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