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I have been an inveterate reader for thirty years and "The Night Watch" is the best "first novel in a series" I have read other than, and since, J.R.R Martin's "A Game of Thrones" in the "Fire and Ice" series. I started listening to "The Night Watch" driving to the airport this past Wednesday. Then during a four hour flight the book continued to entertain. Before mid-night I was finished, but wanted more. I had already used my 5 credits for January but I gladly paid $24.95 for "The Day Watch".
We are told the story from the perspective of Anton, who is an agent of The Night Watch. Anton is a Light Magician, having a modest amount of power, but not a lot of experience. He is also an idealist(never forget this) and is not always careful in using his magic, which might lead him to an arrangement(or compromise) with a Dark Agent. The characters surrounding Anton are rich and colorful, and each with his own motivations as to why a certain area of magic was chosen as a strength to build upon.
The lines between good and evil begin to blur, slowly at first, as the story unfolds. The listener should pay close attention to the arguments from both sides, because each one has thought provoking assertions(and logic) as to why their way is the Right way.
35 of 36 people found this review helpful
IN THE TWILIGHT
This book consists of three stories, with Anton as the main character in each. If all I had listened to would have been the first story Destiny, I would have given this five stars. Destiny is so good I almost gave the whole book five stars. To me this was the most intelligent fantasy I have ever listened to or read. This was one of the few times in my life, that I got it! This is an infinite chess game between good and evil and both sides are right and both sides are wrong. There is some action, but this is mostly a head game. You could compare this to Simon R. Green's, In The Night Side or China Mieville's The City, The City and maybe even Butcher's, Dresden's books, only this is better, more stimulating to the brain. Some have compared SL to King. Both use scary or fantastical elements to get a message across. King message is usually political, where as SL is more psychological. SL shows how doing good can lead to evil and vise versa. That good and evil is not a black and white issue. The second story, Among HIs Own Kind, is good, but not as good as Destiny. I would give the second story four stars.
AN EXPERIENCED KAMIKAZE
The third story, All for our Kind, is bad. Anton becomes a big whiney baby. Even the characters in the story complain about his whining. The plot does not develop until half way through the story and then it is not enough to save the story.
I would suggest buying the book, but only for the first two thirds. The first story is worth your credit. If you are not enjoying the third story, quit the book. Don't be one of those who have to finish every book they start. I used to be that way, until I realized that I was only punishing myself, which was stupid.
MY FRIEND AND ENEMY
I think I will try the next book in the series, even though it goes against my rules. If I don't give the first book five stars, I don't go on to the next. If he can repeat the genius of Destiny, it will be worth it.
Paul Michael is a very good narrator and if you listen closely, he sounds an awful lot like Rod Serling. Even if you don't agree, you have to agree his talent makes this book a better listen then a read.
16 of 17 people found this review helpful