czwartek, 2 lipca 2020

[Recenzja] Legends of the first empire

Who? Michael J. Sullivan
What? "Legends of the First Empire" series
Why? I loved Ryiria
When? May-June 2020
Rating: 6/10, a disappoitment  

Krótkie uwagi o każdym z tomów, po polsku, znajdują się w rachunkach za maj i czerwiec 2020. 

I liked the upbeat tone of Ryiria. It was actually a breath of fresh air, it was something truly wholesome and not gonna lie, it did help me because I was in a really bad place when I was reading it. But the generally upbeat tone didn't mean the writing was naive or childish. It didn't mean there was no suffering or death.
In theory they're here too. But because we have so fucking many characters none of it has time to ring true. There's a horrible betrayal in Ryiria books. You know the one. You remember it years later and would probably strangle the human shitstain that did it. There's also a whole lot of mistreatment, betrayal and tragedy in "Legends..." but because there's so many characters we have no time to ponder. Mawyndulë's world was just shattered in so many ways? Cool, but we have this other stuff to do and he was a meany so screw him, lets jump to another hasty dialogue to sum up two or maybe three other plot lines, just to jump to another one so we can waste some time on some dead people, and then...
Most of the dramatic events, like deaths of characters, sacrifices etc. happen off-camera. Oh my, belive me, I was sooooo moved by the horribel death of some guy I didn't even remember existed. 
You know... I knew it won't be Feintuch's "The King". I didn't even expect something as good a Ryiria. But hell, I'm in shock that it's the characters that are the worst part of it. First thing I'd say about Ryiria is the characters are awesome. Not only the boys but all of them. Fleshed out, with complex motivations. And what we get here? We get Moya. But honestly, they're all awful, maybe except Mawyndulë, but he's not the greatest ether. Raithe wasn't bad as a character, but then again he was whiny and not really interesting as a protagonist. In the end Imaly stands out and maybe Malcolm. All of the rest are just few character traits bundled together with some very cheap glue, spread very thinly because there's so fucking many of characters. I'd be willing to assume they seem like it because there's not enough space for them to shine (as if there was too many of them or something) if not the absolutely abhorrent "emotional" scenes. I mean seriously, that part where Moya suddenly is outraged and hurt that everyone thinks she's kind of a village whore DESPITE RUDE VILLAGE WHORE BEING HER WHOLE CHARACTER UP UNTIL THIS POINT (and later too, she just stops being useless), that part, with everyone crying and acting as if they all were fourteen year old girls on their period, this shit was vile. Any other author would land on my blacklist immediately after that. 
And don't get me wrong. I understand what Sullivan was trying to do here. I mean not with that Moya bullshit, fuck Moya. But those are "Legends of the First Empire", I get it. Problem is, those characters, how legendary wouldn't they be, are not interesting in any way, shape or form. In "Age of Myth" I took most of them as side characters we'll promptly forget but in fact we have to deal with them through all of the series. The horrible Roan-invents-sliced-bread joke I took for this exactly - a cringy joke so popular in western popculture - has a whole BOOK for itself and nothing in it makes sense.
Yeah, sure, all of those people have a role in the plot. And that's where their characters start and end, with very few exceptions. 
I said it at the beginning and I'll say it once more. This books are not upbeat in tone, it's childish and naive. Simplified, dumbed down. So many things were handled that way I was confused who the hell is the target audience of this book. It deals with politics, rapes, abuses, murders etc. that are not comprehensible for a child. On the other hand they're written in very simple way, too simple for an adult to stand. 

If after "Age of Myth" you're optimistic, stop. If you didn't even like that - just give up. "Age of Swords" is so awful, I recommend reading the summary and moving on. Other books aren't that bad, though certainly not brilliant either. When we finally get to who is who and politics it gets significantly more interesting but those bits are mostly near the end. The identity of Malcolm and his role in the grand scheme of things are interesting. We get some tiny bits about the stuff from Ryiria books. The way afterlife is organized here was pretty neat. But there's also Moya and the rest of this flat, boring husks of characters. 
I do not regret reading it that much but this series is mostly simply méh. Last 2 books are more interesting than previous ones. First one is the best in terms of writing.
I think in the end it was as disappointing as I was afraid it will be. 

Age of Myth 8/10
Age of  Swords 2/10
Age of  War  6,5/10
Age of  Legend 6,5/10
Age of Death 6,5/10
Age of Empyre 6,5/10

1 komentarz:

  1. Zastanawiam się, czy ja, będąc tak mało wybrednym czytelnikiem, też miałabym tak złe wrażenia :D
    Ale w planach mam kiedyś Ryirię, jak ją znajdę w promocji i kupię ;) A skoro rekomendujesz, to zakładam, że będę się świetnie bawiła :D


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