09 June 2019

Insufficient genius

Fantasy | Coldmaker | Daniel A. Cohen


'Cold' as something tangible that falls from the sky and is the measure of wealth is a new concept. However, the treatment is not sufficient to make this the kind of wow experience that Brandon Sanderson (one of the author's role models, as per the afterword) did in the Mistborn series.

There are unresolved points (is the Utopia dreamed of by the slaves real or imaginary); the kind slaver is two dimensional; the hero is a genius inventor who can invent and prototype system-changing innovations in, literally, days; the heroine is mysteriously independent, bold, able to get unconditional support for no reason that the reader can see while the hero has to prove himself...

Yet, there are plus points. The basis for the excessive cruelty of the slaver class is realistic (religion can cause people to put aside empathy and be cruel by godly demand). You do care for the hero and the heroine. There are sympathetic characters. Some of the villains are somewhat understandable. The 'science' of the Cold seems to have some (if flimsy) basis. At a few points in the book, you can feel the heat that pervades the World Cried (that's what it's called).

I'm ambivalent whether I want to read the next book in the series or not. I fear the plot is being dragged to generate more volume. It may not stand up to the strain.

2 stars = it was ok

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