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On Stranger Tides Mass Market Paperback – April 26, 2011
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
“[On Stranger Tides] promises marvels and horrors, and delivers them all. You’ll love the characters, you’ll stay awake all night reading it, and when you finally do sleep, you’ll find this story playing through your dreams.” (Orson Scott Card)
“Tim Powers is an uncommon literary talent….Exceedingly readable….If heavenly muses were to put Dean Koontz, John Le Carré and Robert Parker into a creative blender, then molded the mix into a brand new writer, the result would be something akin to Tim Powers.” (Denver Post)
“Powers [has] considerable gifts.” (San Francisco Chronicle)
“Powers has forged a style of narrative uniquely his own, one filled with sharply drawn characters, fully imagined settings, elaborate underpinnings that pull all rugs out from under us and let us glimpse terrible, ragged floors beneath.” (Los Angeles Times)
“Tim Powers has long been one of my absolutely favorite writers, those whose new books I snatch up as soon as they appear….The qualities I most admire in him [are] intelligence, narrative sparkle, great dialogue, speculative imagination, and emotional power.” (Peter Straub)
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Top Customer Reviews
And in typical Powers fashion, in "On Stranger Tides," he tosses in everything he thinks he might need in a pirate novel -- historical figures, naval action, a noble man in a bad situation, voodoo, jungles and so on -- and a few things only he would think to link to the rest and comes up with another hit, and my favorite Powers novel.
The action here careens back and forth across the Caribbean and if Powers isn't wrestling crazy ideas to the ground as he does in "The Stress of Her Regard" or "The Anubis Gates," it's only because, this time around, the play's the thing.
This is a book I loan out to all of my sea-loving friends, knowing that they'll devour it and hand it back to me, more battered than ever, but it's a book I can't keep to myself. Now, if only a hardbound edition would come out, so that I have a chance at actually having a copy in decent condition.
This is a "grab it if you see it" buy for fans of fantasy, pirates or wild adventure stories. "On Stranger Tides" is a dynamite novel by one of the best genre authors working today.
Interestingly enough, though this is one of Mr. Powers' earlier works, it's the one I waited the longest to read. No apparent reason, but I wish I wouldn't have waited so long. It fits right in with the author's penchant for offbeat plots. In the past, Mr. Powers has written about ghost hunters, gamblers with a sense of the occult, and other eccentricities. "On Stranger Tides" introduces us to the world of Caribbean pirates with a bent for the occult. It is not as dark as other Tim Powers novels, but is every bit as powerful and entertaining.
The story takes place in the early 18th century and is a confabulation. That is, it is a work of fiction that includes in its cast, actual, historical personages who lived during the time. In this book, one-time Bahamian governor Woodes Rogers, infamous pirates Stede Bonnet and Edward Thatch a.k.a. Blackbeard, Colonel William Rhett, the Receiver General of the Carolina Province, and a wildly anachronistic Juan Ponce de Leon, cross paths, and sometimes swords with the unlikely buccaneer, Jack Shandy, Phil Davies, the pirate with a heart of gold, and Benjamin Hurwood, a one-time Oxford don gone insane with grief over the death of his wife Margaret. As always, Mr. Powers' research and attention to detail shine through as we are given lessons in history, geography, and voodoo while we follow the romps of the picaresque heroes of this book. Yes, the pirates are the heroes. . .Read more ›
On Stranger Tides is arguably Tim Powers' most well-known and influential novel. Published in 1988, it has been quoted as one of the primary inspirations behind both Ron Gilbert's splendid Monkey Island computer games and also the Pirates of the Caribbean film franchise, to such an extent that the film producers bought the rights to the novel and the imminent fourth film in the series is both named for and draws on some of the plot elements of the book. Yet it's not quite the swashbuckling, good-time adventure that the those later works would suggest.
On Stranger Tides is rich and full of vibrant colour that brings alive the setting, but it's also weird, offbeat and often downright bizarre. Jack Shandy is a reluctant hero who spends a fair amount of time moping around and musing on his bad luck rather than getting on with business (especially in the second half of the novel, dissipating dramatic tension rather than building it up) whilst Beth is a fairly weak character lacking much motivation, rather disappointing given there aren't many female characters in the novel (in this regard the inspired works have done a better job; Beth is no Elaine Marley and isn't even an Elizabeth Swann).Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Really enjoyable book. Pirates, voodoo, good hero. You can see the "Pirates of the Caribbean" connection.Published 9 days ago by Joe Fesperman
Great book. Funny, awesome, very engrossing. The only thing it has in relation to the Pirates of the Caribbean movie is Blackbeard, and he is much more interesting here. Read morePublished 12 days ago by Carcosa Hali
I was really expecting more piracy than voodoo. It seems the only way the label of 'piracy' was used & stuck was that Powers used the names Blackbeard & Stede Bonnet. Read morePublished 19 days ago by Sadie_J
Love this story: The characterization of Jack Shandy, the plot. Well done.Published 1 month ago by iPad User
Enjoyable read overall, especially for those interested in key works for the recent popularity of pirates in the popular imagination.Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
Very entertaining and the narration was absolutely fantastic. I would highly recommend this book. If you love pirates of the Caribbean movies you'll enjoy this book a lot.Published 3 months ago by Mariaelena
Tim Powers grabbed me with this one. Being born in the Carribean, I have always felt the lure of the old history, rum, pirates, treasure and treachery. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Dr Arachne Phibes
Honestly I don't know if there is violence, sexual content, or a talking hamster. I was unable to stick with the book beyond the first couple of chapters. Another write off book.Published 5 months ago by Consumer
It was kinda boring at the start, but it got good towards the middle and end.Published 6 months ago by Andres Rovira