Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Review: Shadow's Edge

Shadow's Edge
Shadow's Edge by Brent Weeks

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I didn't hate this as much by the end as I did at the beginning, but it still got on my nerves. It may help that it's been most of a month since I finished it as I write this.

I think there was one female character in the entire book who wasn't raped. Not "on camera" so-to-speak, thank goodness, but that almost makes it more insidious; the casualness with which its treated by everyone including the victims and the narrator doesn't make me feel like the world is callous and uncaring - it makes me feel like the author is. (Which, as near as I can tell from what little I know about him, he doesn't appear to be. Which makes it all the worse a job of storytelling that I felt that way after reading this book.) Yes yes; I get that you're _edgy_ and _gritty_. And I can even see how the characters taking rape casually might - just barely - work in a world full of unrelenting horribleness, but you're going to need to try very hard to make sure that _we_ feel it as horrible even though the characters don't, or it feels like your narrative voice is agreeing with their point-of-view. I didn't get that from this.

The rest of it was pretty stock-standard swords-and-sorcery fantasy. I'm still not really buying the "I trained for years exclusively to be good at murdering people for money, but really I'm just a soppy boy scout who wants to be nice" thing. The action is action-ey, and I liked the development of whats-his-name, the new god-emperor of Dune (or is that the next book? I can't be bothered to keep them straight at this point...) I'm not really sure what's getting it that second star at this point, actually; its not quite as laughably bad as [b:The Ill-Made Mute|232102|The Ill-Made Mute (The Bitterbynde, #1)|Cecilia Dart-Thornton|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1388355842s/232102.jpg|2817882], and I don't want to dilute its badness by equating the two?

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