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The Burning Light: A Novel Paperback – November 1, 2016
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"A gripping tale of spirit and determination set in a truly harrowing future. You must learn the truth behind The Burning Light!" ―New York Times bestselling author Jason M. Hough
"[Beaulieu and Ziegler] imbue this novella with the emotional heft of something much grander through sharp characterizations, detailed worldbuilding, violent descriptions, and thunderous action pieces." ―Publishers Weekly, starred review
"Impossible to put down." ―RT Book Reviews
"Freaking awesome. Packed with cool ideas, gritty setting, and characters that leap off the page. I wish I'd written it myself." ―Ramez Naam, multi-award-winning author of the Nexus Trilogy
"The Burning Light is strange, unnerving, and disturbingly unfamiliar while managing to be utterly compelling and absorbing. It is startlingly good reading." ―David Liss, Edgar Award winner
"The Burning Light delivers." ―Nerds of a Feather
About the Author
BRADLEY P. BEAULIEU and his novels have garnered many accolades and most anticipated lists, including two Hotties-the Debut of the Year and Best New Voice-on Pat's Fantasy Hotlist, a Gemmell Morningstar Award nomination for The Winds of Khalakovo and more.
ROB ZIEGLER's fiction obsession began in high school and took him to TheEvergreen State College, where he studied American Literature. In theyears before the publication of his first novel, Seed, he donned myriadprofessional hats, including dishwasher, IT strategist, bouncer, daytrader and poker player. He has lived all over the country, fromPortland to Boston, but the mountain west is his home. He and his wifelive in rural Colorado.
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Top Customer Reviews
Authors Bradley P. Beaulieu and Rob Ziegler give us a wonderfully dystopic (one might even say apocalyptic) setting in the flooded, sweltering ruins of future New York. I really liked the diversity and culture baked into the altered landscape, and the way the authors presented humanity's adaptation to the new normal brought about by the disastrous effects of climate change, even if much of it is downright criminal. The waterways are patrolled by pirates and slavers, and a rag-tag team of military soldiers hunting down mediums for the Light and the junkies obsessed with it.
So, what is the Light? Frankly, I have no idea. It's analogous to a drug, given that those who interface with it are referred to as junkies. It's dangerous and can kill entire swaths of a population. Beyond that, the authors refuse to elaborate on the nature of their MacGuffin, despite it being very, very important to the characters themselves. Personally, being stuck in the dark as to the Light's nature made it difficult for me to care about it as a plot device. It was a little to fantastical and metaphysical for me to appreciate.
The characters, though, at least have reason to care, even if I ultimately didn't. Chu, our military squad leader tearing through New York to kill Light junkies at every turn, has a slick motivation and a wonderful, edgy darkness about her given her own personal history with the Light. She's on the warpath, hunting for Zola, a medium for the Light. Zola's connection to the Light, though, ain't what it used to be. Their history and cat-and-mouse conflict gives the story plenty of meat, but the resolution to their story wasn't as satisfying as it should have been, and much of that is due to the ambiguous nature of the Light.
The Burning Light has some terrific Big Ideas, but they could have used more time and room for development. It's a smart piece of work in need of deeper elaboration, at least for me. If you don't mind unexplained, inexplicable irregularities like the Light, and can just go with the flow, you may have an easier time of things.
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I love scifi when it's innovative, philosophical, yet with a keen interest in its characters and their relationships.Read more