- File Size: 588 KB
- Print Length: 38 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publication Date: January 7, 2014
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B009VRHEDE
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,001,082 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Soothsayer Kindle Edition
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Being as how I gave the story four stars, I don't think I need to specify that I enjoyed reading it. It's 'dark' fantasy in the mold of Game of Thrones or Dragon Age (the two series which forms the bulk of my experience with fantasy apart from Discworld), so I'm assuming anyone who likes that type of thing won't need to get their bearings. The writing is well above workmanlike (which is high praise, coming from me. I'll give up on a book after a couple of chapters if the author isn't able to properly put together sentences and paragraphs), ensuring that everything is communicated effectively. The action is suitably visceral and the dialogue flows smoothly.
Where the story loses a star from me is the fact that it doesn't describe the world very clearly. I can picture the events that happen clearly enough, the conversations convey the intended information, but everything around it is fuzzy and indistinct. I know that not everyone will agree, but a very large part of the enjoyment of reading fiction isn't mere plot, but painting pictures with words. And while I can understand why the author forewent a great deal of description here (length and pacing) I think he could have done a better job of illustrating everything - it's a world that's not ours, so it's nice for the prose to convey what the world IS like (beyond 'dark and gritty').
Overall, I'd say Matt Gilbert has what it takes to be a good writer. As I said earlier in the review, 'Soothsayer' is an entertaining tale (though I believe that with a greater attention to detail and a less straightforward plot it could have been even better as a novella or novelette). I'll be checking out 'The Dead God's Due', and I'm hoping that it's set in Soothsayer-verse because I'd like to see the world fleshed out. Keep writing, Matt Gilbert, because you're good at it.