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Through the Woods Paperback – December 4, 2012
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What could be more horrific than giving these cats powers. How about being able to turn living things to ash. Or how about mind control? Or consuming a living creature until there’s nothing left? What makes the scientists think they can make them into lethal weapons and control them?
As you can surmise, things go every which way but the right one and these killer cats get down to business. I found it particularly fun that they can think and plot. The litter of odd cats all have unique abilities. Some that can’t be weaponized and some that can. But the furry critters aren’t cooperative and one in particular has a dastardly agenda all it’s own.
Fur flies. Claws scratch. Teeth gnash. And all out war comes to man. You’ll look at felines in a different way after this story.
What did I love most? The concept itself is brilliant. Cats are fascinating and this book features two of the most complex cat characters I've ever read, Leviticus and his evil brother whose name I can neither spell nor pronounce. And here's the thing, they seem like real cats, and I am now looking at my cats entirely differently. These are also original characters. While ultimately this is a story of two brothers -- one good, one evil, blah blah blah, it's never been done with cats before and that alone is worth the $4 or whatever this is as a kindle cheapie.
Having read both books, I also think there is more to Blackford's writing than merely being able to put over a scary scene. There are times -- particularly when he gets near the subject of nature versus the artificial environments that humans set up for themselves and other creatures -- where the writing seemed to soar.
I haven't read any of his other work, but based on these two books, I don't get why Blackford isn't famous yet.
The bad: The implausibility of many sections of the story. I understand that a fictional story about cats with paranormal powers does not have to be especially realistic, but there were times I was rolling my eyes at the cheesey elements of the plot. For example (MINOR SPOILER) the Agency keeps these genetically modified cats in cages ON THE ROOF OF THEIR BUILDING. It makes no sense at all why the cats wouldn't be kept indoor in a lab. This is a scientific experiment after all, you would think the best scientists employed by the US government would want to minimize outside variables, but no, the cages are kept on the roof (which sets the events of the story in motion.) Any scientist, or any person with common sense, would know not to put dangerous experiments in roof top cages out in the open. Other events that made me roll my eyes include when the main character (who is just a regular guy) manages to shoot a cell phone out of the air, causing the battery to explode, all while jumping out of a tree. Yeah, that's a little too much for me.
Also, the ending is just ok. It does leave things open for a sequel and I would have preferred a more definitive conclusion.
Nevertheless, I recommend this read as it was entertaining and I did read it through to the end. Fans of stories with mysterious government experiments and paranormal powers should enjoy this.
On a random side note, the giant bears were kinda cool. They reminded me of the giant bear from Stephen King's The Wastelands (Dark Tower III) which was a story I greatly enjoyed.
Blackford presents a (thankfully) fictitious story that will make all cat owners want to sleep with one eye open. The felines in this book are as spitfire and rambunctious as the ones I have at home. Their personalities as well as the personality of the writer jump off the page. Blackford excels at making you question what is real and what could be.
Most recent customer reviews
I had absolutely no idea what to expect when I started reading Through the Woods.Read more
I'm looking forward to the continuation of the story.