Just as a heads up, I will be calling the police at the end of this review to report a crime, because this book and its author tried to murder me. Does anyone know the legislation about this? Can I have a book arrested for assault?
Okay, but seriously, this book is a monster. There were several points where I nearly threw it across the room, I was so upset. And then I kept going and almost immediately it became clear why Palmer did that monstrous thing that I hated and that made me want to go to my bed and curl up with my cat and the warm blanket that my cat thinks is her boyfriend. It was like she was continually slapping my face, and then immediately turning around and being like, okay, but here’s why I just did that! And it makes sense! And so you find yourself agreeing to your own assault.
CALL THE POLICE.
I am of course being (mostly) facetious here, but I am finding it hard to actually talk about this effing book without descending into hyperbole. It’s clear to me that Ada Palmer is some kind of heinous genius who uses her powers for evil and writing books that torment me, and keeps me there with the promise of cool stuff and philosophical meanderings.
Also, all the talk about humanity and its relationship to war was legit giving me anxiety so by the end I could only read this book when the sun was up.
I actually ordered book three from my library when I was about a third of the way through this one, but that was before it betrayed me and stabbed my kidneys with knives and then dripped lemon juice on my open wounds. If you want intelligent discussion about this book, you can try Julie’s review, because you won’t find it here.
P.S. Make sure you read the Author’s Note at the end, which is when she talks about the title of book one (and the epigraph for this one), Too Like the Lightning (a nod to a line from Romeo and Juliet: “Too like the lightning, which doth cease to be / Ere one can say ‘It lightens.'”) That is when her true evilness is revealed. I haven’t had the title of a book sneak up on me like that since I read The Constant Gardener.