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This was are very tough review for me. My first impulse was to give it only two stars, but I ultimately awarded a third. The easiest way to explain my opinion is to supply simple pros and cons list, so here goes.
1. Weber spends a lot of time discussing the details of war that are often overlooked (This is also a con and I'll explain why in the cons list). The importance of manufacturing, uniform measures, supply routes, intelligence, and a myriad of other details are both interesting and rarely come up in the genre.
2. The history of technological development and it's impact on the world is also very interesting and rarely covered in the science fiction world.
3. The underlying plot is very engaging. I really want to see what happens when and if the grand inquisitor finds out the truth. I am curiouser and curiouser about the alien species that nearly destroyed humanity.
1. The things interesting in #1-2 above become drudgery after getting the details hour after hour. At times I felt more like I was reading a dry history textbook than a novel. The great characters and plot are crowded out by ceaseless discussion of how long it takes to manufacture a gun and why cavalry rant as good in war as you might imagine. Even well researched info gets boring after a while.
2. Most of the endless discussion from the first con, is delivered in prose. Sometimes whole chapters slip by with almost no dialogue at all!
3. The main plot is moving along about the same rate as Jabba the Hut in a foot race. In the last several novels very little has actually happened. A subtitle for several of the books might be "The War continues".
Honestly, I still think it deserves a 2 star rating, but I am interested enough in the plot I'll probably read the next one. I have a hard time giving two star to a novel if I plan to read the next book in the series. There are glimmers of greatness that keep me ganging in there. I am hoping it will suddenly improve and I'll be glad I hung in there. Books 8-10 of Wheel of Time made we want to give up too, but I'm glad I kept reading. I'll hang in there and award 3 stars.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful
Would you consider the audio edition of Like a Mighty Army to be better than the print version?
This is a long book. Having a narrator that you want to listen to is essential if you want to finish it. As a commuter, print books are not high on my list. However, a good David Weber book with a good narrator always is.
What does Oliver Wyman bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?
Oliver Wyman brings the characters to life. His use of different voices allows the listener to better "see" the book in person. It also helps that he adjust his voice to match what you think the character actually looks like. I hope David Weber keeps him for all future Safehold books. Switching narrators can really ruin an otherwise great book.
Any additional comments?
This is a very good book. However the Safehold series in and of itself is rather slow moving forward. It would be nice to see the pace pick up somewhat. I have listened to all of the Safehold and Honor Harrington books. I look forward to each and every one that comes out in the future!
4 of 4 people found this review helpful