Wednesday, March 13, 2013
Review:Powerless: The Submersion by Jason Letts
This book is number four in the series and its one of those series that you can love and hate. The reason for this is that the pace is one that keeps building the adrenaline pump, only bringing you half way down before the next pump and it can almost get tiring.
Couple that with all the tension and wonder about how the hero's are going to solve all the problems and then add some -old serial novel traits- and it can almost become daunting. I remember reading some of those Edgar Rice Burroughs novels and getting near the last pages trying to figure out when all the plot twists are going to even out only to discover that it's not happening in this episode.
This means that many people who drop out, from exhaustion, at the third novel are going to miss out on the whole tie-up of loose ends. By the time I reached the end of the third book I felt about the same as I did near the middle of the Deathstalker series. You almost need a set of file cards to keep track of all the action and deception and intrigue.
There's also a match with all of the paranoid schizoid traits of half the cast. It's funny that some people often complain that the characters in a book seem one dimensional and unrealistic. I think it's safe to say in this book that you'll be happy for the one or two of those that show up.The characters in this story are pretty multifaceted and when they appear to deviate from what I expect I find myself reflecting back to see why they did that bit of surprise and find that it makes sense.
Mira has been jumping around like the needle on a compass in the hands of feeble trembling old man. She's naive by nature but has throughout the series undergone some changes- some for the worse at times. Some times it almost seems the naivete is cured then it starts to rear its head again.
We pick up the characters in Submersion with everyone captured and subdued by the evil Warlord. Even Mira's sister, Clara, is being held captive. The main group have been split up and everyone who survived the battle is suffering under the thumb of the warlord while building a ship, which will take him off to expand his kingdom.
There are two groups; the Sunfighters who are under the Warlords coercive control and the others who have eluded that influence but are prisoners of the Warlord and his sunfighters. None of these people are being treated well or fed and cared for well and my one quibble is that based on the chancy nature of how people are fed there should be a huge number of casualties of hunger and famine and disease and just plain loss of spirit.
Since this is a prisoner of war type novel this time through it could be rather trying if not for the constant build up and sometimes partial setbacks in the various plots to subvert the authorities.
There's a lot going on in a small space so this book really keeps the reader pumped up all the way to the end. Much similar to the third book Stasis. Thankfully the reader will be delighted with a bit more resolution to some of the conflicts that have run throughout the other three books.
There are a lot of elements revealed in this book that help drive into the last book, which is the fifth one named Carafe.
Make no mistake; despite some of the mentions above I loved this story/ series and I very much appreciate the pace that it's had to sustain. For those who love a good fantasy with lots of conflict and interesting characters those are all here and there's light at the end of the tunnel in knowing that it will wrap up beautifully in the final book.