Tuesday, November 2, 2010

A book like a decent steak.... rich and meaty!

Meaty? A book? Well, yes. “Empire in Black and Gold” has substance to it- you can sink your teeth into this one. Complex characters? Not too much backstory, but yet they are developed. Action? You got it. Betrayal? Yup. Combat? You Betcha! And the endless variety of insect-related groups keeps the unique aspect of the book fresh. Adrain Tchaikovsky’s first volume in the “Shadows of the Apt” series is a fun one, one you can tear into, like a large sized, simple steak served without fancy crap like blue cheese or chipotle reduction. Good, solid meaty stuff- creative settings but not a world that requires half a book to understand. Plot: one good man, grown old, and his students against an evil empire-- and those in danger will not listen to his warnings. Good premise, mixed into a world of insect-styled people and machinery of all sorts. No, it won’t haunt you after you read it; it won’t leave you changed, and you probably won’t need to re-read it down the road. But you’ll want to read the sequel, that’s for sure. 28.5/42 Richmans- tasty, rich, not too complex, but full of flavor. That extra half point is earned by great pacing and smooth reading.