Monday, 31 March 2014

The Ophelia Prophecy by Sharon Lynn Fisher

Arc provided by Tor Books through Netgalley

This is not an easy review to write. 

I loved the author's first book, "Ghost Planet", which had me completely enthralled; but this one ended up  mostly being a chore to finish.

I can even admit that what happened here could well be a case of:
It's not you book, it's me, to a ratio of 70/30 blame... if this makes any sense whatsoever.

I admit that the blurb of this one wasn't as entrancing as Ghost Planet (so entrancing that it reveals something that should not be said to better amaze the reader!), and that the only reason I requested this title, was because GP had been such an amazing read.

This one: A sci fi novel in which a genetically altered species was created, with insect like characteristics. Insects o_O...
Insects... *shiver*
I had no idea what the author was going to accomplish with bugs, but I was ready to be amazed!

The beginning

Let me say this: I had to re-read  the beginning of the story twice, because I disliked it so much the first time I read it; and after that, I could only force myself to keep reading a few pages a day.

Of course it came a moment when I got lost in all the futuristic setting, so I had to go back and give it another try. And guess what?
Second time around reading it, it did get better.
 Although I continue not being a fan of descriptions and storytelling that clearly have a paranormal mark...
 You know, the main characters look at one another and there's instant lust, comments of "mates" and things like that.

Too much telling and not enough showing

I can't help feeling that this story needed at least two books to have been properly developed.
As it was, I felt that mostly everything in it was only superficially touched. 
With this being a complex sci-fi novel that tries to be every place at once, most of the times, the storyline felt like infodump.

Too much balls in the air
. A future in which mankind has been relegated to a prey status, in which they live in Sanctuary's.
(How did this actually happened?)
. The Mantis, as ruling species
(What happened to our defence systems?)
The explanations just felt too simplistic...

.Then there's talks of dissensions between the Mantis
.Political crisis
.Religious crisis
.Insta love that gave place to insta romance
.AI that when necessary takes a life of its own...
(Then was a lot of convenient things happening when the need arose...)

.Talks about transgenic beings, then there's talks about Bio-Holocaust and Bio-assignatures....
These are the parts in which I take my fair portion of blame: I really couldn't muster any interest for this!

Asha lived her whole life in a Sanctuary, but we never actually saw it.
Then she's supposed to be twenty five _ yes, I know she led a sheltered life _ but with the exception of the most steamy moments, she appears to be seventeen..
Paxton in the beginning of the story was talking to a mysterious person. Did the reason why he was doing it completely escape me?
His sister could also have played a more lively role in the story. Why her attachment to Carrick?
This could have also been developed.

In the end, there was supposed to be a big fight, when suddenly Paxton _you can call him the crown prince_, decides to change his loyalties and rebels against his father's power. Practically alone, with a dubious political ally....
(the guy was supposed to be smart..)

So, what happens?
It fades to ~black~, so next time we hear from him, he has stolen all his father's ship's, (with help!) with fighting capacities.
Rebels 1
Paxton's father 0
And so, the story ends with a nice bow on it. Yes, the future may hold problems, but for now all is good.

In the end there were some interesting twists to the story that I didn't see coming but, as a whole, this tale didn't convince me.
But do give it a try, the writing is fluid, and hopefully you'll enjoy it more than I did.

Buy "The Ophelia Prophecy"

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