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Unicorn Battle Squad Paperback – October 1, 2012
"Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress"
Is the world really falling apart? Is the ideal of progress obsolete? Cognitive scientist and public intellectual Steven Pinker urges us to step back from the gory headlines and prophecies of doom, and instead, follow the data: In seventy-five jaw-dropping graphs, Pinker shows that life, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise. Learn more
"Somewhere between Kafka and My Little Pony, only even weirder than that sounds." -BEN LOORY, author of Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day
"Imagine Terry Gilliam directing from a script written by Jack Vance channeling the ghosts of Kafka and Calvino, and you're closing in on the essence of Alene's latest novel. A bold fusion of grounded surrealism, unfettered filth, and wit as dry and dark as a strip of unicorn jerky." -JESSE BULLINGTON, author of The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart
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A book I will not recommend.
The world the book takes place in is boundless and bleak. Large cities with endlessly tall buildings, flooded and decimated towns, and vast deserts. The settings are a cross between modern and futuristic, but crumbling, with an extremely archaic feel to it. The nastiness of it all makes the atmosphere of the story seem more and more apocalyptic as it trudges on through the endless filth. The Unicorn Riders of the story are a motley crew - heroic and formidable, but at the same time they can make you sick. A ragtag team of ruffians, but also honorable and the great protectors of the city. The villains of the story, the Theklanians, are innumerable and well-armed, making it seem like the odds are against them. And there's a gluttonous Princess in a giant palace being carried on the backs of thousands of enslaved men, slowly making its way across the desert. That's one of the coolest, and most fantastical things I've ever read in a book.
All-in-all I found Unicorn Battle Squad to be extremely enjoyable, tremendously well-written, and the perfect length for the story. It's a story-story, an extraordinary story, that never loses its momentum. It's pretty much the best book ever.
The book follow a mid-level clerk called Carl, who lives in a city of clerks which is protected by the unicorn riders, but through a twist of events ends up with a small unicorn that was meant for his father. This simple beast ends up taking him on adventures over seas and deserts to protect the city he called home. Whilst this sounds like a fairly straight forward story it is set in a varied world with plenty of eclectic characters around every turn which keeps things interesting through the story.
Whilst I enjoyed the book and it's characters throughout, the book does tend to jump around a bit which can make things a little confusing, but the main thing that annoyed me was the ending. I've read plenty of book which bad or even sudden endings, but this one just left way too many unanswered questions for my liking.
So overall, I did enjoy the book and read it at a good speed thanks to the good pace of events and colourful characters, and despite the ending slightly ruining that, it is well worth the read.
The novel was received in exchange for an honest review.