- Series: A Novel of the Others (Book 4)
- Hardcover: 416 pages
- Publisher: Roc (March 8, 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0451474473
- ISBN-13: 978-0451474476
- Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 1.2 x 9.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (484 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #61,849 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Marked In Flesh (A Novel of the Others) Hardcover – March 8, 2016
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Praise for Anne Bishop and the Novels of the Others
“Anne Bishop is so good at writing character development....I love this series and I NEED MORE!”—USA Today
“A stunningly original yarn, deeply imagined, beautifully articulated, and set forth in clean, limpid, sensual prose.”—Kirkus Reviews
“The Queen of Fantasy...Teeming with intrigue, suspense, heartbreak, and hints of romance, Bishop’s literary skills continue to astound and enchant.”—Heroes and Heartbreakers
“Bishop’s world building is second to none.”—Fresh Fiction
About the Author
New York Times bestselling author Anne Bishop is a winner of the William L. Crawford Memorial Fantasy Award, presented by the International Association for the Fantastic in the Arts, for the bestselling Black Jewels Trilogy. She is the author of the Novels of the Others, including Vision in Silver, Murder of Crows, and Written in Red. She lives in upstate New York.
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Top Customer Reviews
I didn't mind the new characters. Some book series suffer from feeling they can never stray from the main characters first introduced. I really love Hope and Jackson. But sadly very few others of these new characters got developed enough to care much about them. It felt like they were just filling up space to make the book long enough until we got back to Meg and co. Other characters that had been developed didn't get as much page time, and I missed them. The Crows, for example, barely got a mention and no dialogue.
Certain things were repeated to the point that I got very frustrated with it. Characters talked or thought about the same things over and over with no new information or perspective; such as the whole 'how much human is too human to be' for Simon, and the worries about the Elders attack.
Meg and Simon's relationship development felt put on hold for this entire book. It felt as it that was being saved for the last book. I like 'slow burn' relationships and it makes sense for these characters. But done to this extreme it felt forced.
The entire book really felt as if they decided they wanted this series to be 5 books long, when maybe it would have been better more tightly written as 3 or 4. Bishop's Black Jewels series also suffered, imo, when there was demand for her to continue after she'd thought she was done.
I do have a few thoughts about the storyline, and to discuss them, I must disclose details and elements of the plot of this latest book. To put it more simply, SPOILER ALERT!!!
Seriously, spoilers ahead.
Okay, so I just reread this book for probably the eighth or ninth time and it only just occurred to me that if the Elders and the storms have now purged Thaisia of all the HFL, it's likely that we'll never find out who killed Daphne Wolfgard. This only occurred to me because they never mention her at all in the book, which is understandable given that in addition to Lakeside, Great Island, and Sweetwater, this book also has chapters taking place in Prairie Gold and Cel-Romano, as well as random places in Namid where Ocean is doing things. My point is that the book's focus has grown from just Lakeside to all of these other places and we have lost a few of the smaller details along the way, like Daphne. I know it seems like a long time but Meg still hasn't been in Lakeside a full year which means Daphne hasn't been dead more than 3 years.
That said, SO MUCH happened in this book it's not like I even noticed it until I read it again for like the 9th time. This book was so action-packed and I loved it because the previous 3 books felt like the humans kept hammering at the earth natives and getting too big for their britches because they never really got in any trouble for it and in this book the earth natives (well, Ocean, the Elementals and the Elders at least) finally hit back!! It was really cathartic, in a way. It sucks that humans died I guess but they were s***ty humans anyway.
I would like to see more happen between Simon and Meg, and perhaps a few of the other couples they hinted at in this book, but especially Simon and Meg. I liked that they went so slow, but four books, really? There was barely any movement on that front in this book and like I've said there was enough action to make up for it I suppose but now I have to wait for the next book to see what happens and hope they move forward more than a half step? I love them together, I love that they're being so slow and careful but come ON. Reward me for my patience in book 5, yeah? :-)
I've heard this argument that the expansion of the scope of these books from just Lakeside to a good portion of the world now is ruining the books. I STRONGLY disagree. The whole point, I think, of Meg's interactions with the Lakeside Courtyard are that she's like this tiny pebble that created ripples that became waves throughout Namid. I think from the first book it was headed in that direction and Bishop would be doing us a disservice if she didn't explore that very important aspect of Meg's character. It changes the nature of each of the books, yes, but that's what keeps them from becoming stale and repetitive, I think. It's a very organic change each time, and it works with the story. But it is true that certain new character development (Tolya, Barb?) and smaller details (Daphne) are lost just because they'd make the book too long otherwise and that does sort of suck, but it's a trade off, and one I'll happily make as long as Bishop stays true to the main characters and to the story. It's worked perfectly for 4 books (but now really lets speed up the Simon and Meg thing ok?).
I also wonder in terms of plot where they go from here. What does book 5 look like after the HFL and Cel-Romano are gone? I would love to hear what people think...