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I can see the author was trying and I will give them plenty of credit for that. I definitely think they have the potential to do something good. But this was not it. the plot itself felt like one of the most generic marysue stories I could have imagined and basically everything that happened in the first several hours of the book felt incredibly nonsensical and unrealistic. it's the kind of thing that would only make sense to the mind of like a young teenager and the way that everyone reacts to things that happened in the story
not to mention the main character himself is somehow portrayed has being like this goody-two-shoes nice guy but he actually ends up being this incredibly shallow and kind of disgusting person. it's not even really spoilers since it happens within the first hour of the book but he's got this really impressive girlfriend who genuinely loves him and cares for him but he loses her because he's too busy obsessing over someone he was friends with as a child but grew up to for lack of better descriptors to be the stereotypical slutty cheerleader bitch stereotype and that just made him incredibly unlikeable as a character.
one other thing that really grated on me and to be fair I don't think this is the fault of either the writer or the narrator but the book at times is really hard to follow. They randomly jump around to different characters and different times and also there's a lot of internal dialogue that can make following conversations and interactions very difficult. it's probably easier to follow if you were actually physically reading the book but listening to the narrator reading it out more than one time I was confused trying to figure out whether that was something a character said inside their head or they said outside.
it's not the worst book I found on Audible. and it had potential, but it just did not come out well. there are much better superhero books to check out instead.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful
I listened up to chapter twenty. It's like trying to make sense of the most ditzy and airheaded teenager in town. The author can't make up their mind of what kind of story it's supposed to be. Breakfast Club, supernatural mystery and horror, Tsundrae, or a sci-fi superhero story. add a point of view that keeps on changing like every 6 minutes, and it makes the entire story a mess.
I have read fanfiction that had more thought and cohesivene plot in it.
The Dark Souls” is a very clever Gateway novel for the Viral Superhero series by Bryan Cohen and Casey Lane. Generically it is science-fiction with aliens and multi-dimensional parallel worlds but some aspects are reminiscent of fantasy—such as a powerful sword and demonic possession.
One of the most enjoyable qualities of this book is its quirky humour and ironic tone. We see it in both plot and characters.
The characters are recognisable types that one meets in High School. There is Natalie Dorn the excelling athlete, the popular cheerleader Erica LaPlante with her worshipping acolytes, and her loyal best friend, Jennifer Norris, the sheriff’s daughter who dedicates herself to keeping her beautiful but “dumb as a post” pal within reasonable bounds. And of course there are the nasty school bullies.
All these characters go in very interesting directions. At one point Erica seems to be the anchor to a double love triangle—on one hand between Ted and Natalie and simultaneously between Dhiraj and Jennifer.
Fireworks in the offing?
Well, as is so often the case in this book, things just aren’t necessarily quite as they seem.
The writers have loads of fun playing with the super hero convention. Ted is not the typical super-hero and his sidekick, Dhiraj, can be something of a liability. Ted is a rather gentle person and has only limited use of his powers while his powerful nemesis, Nigel, has a witty kind of elegance. Then there is that great feature of most super heroes—a secret identity. which Ted doesn't have. He soon learns the problems that this disadvantage causes.
The plot is nicely patterned and paced and presented with a wink and smile. There are many unexpected twists and turns—particularly in the page-turning action that dominates the last quarter of the book. Of course there are some loose ends. Bur one expects that with six more books to come!
“The Telepath" is the second book in this series. Books whose plots develop over a sequence of volumes have challenges of a special kind. To begin, there must be an over-arching story arc which informs each novel in the group. The story arc in this case is cosmic in nature and provides a dramatic force which motivates the individual plot lines in all of the books. However, there must also be a “local” plot that has its own particular interest and which has a reasonably satisfactory resolution. Thus the volumes between the “gateway” volume and the finale all must, to a certain extent, have properties of a stand-alone novel and yet be sequential developments in a larger pattern. I think that the authors of this book have succeeded quite well in juggling the needs of the series and the specific book.
"The Telepath" is an interesting blend of science-fiction and fantasy. In fact it quite possibly qualifies as being in that mixed genre termed "Science fantasy".. As in fantasy there are visionary experiences quasi-demonic possessions and a battle between forces of Dark and Light. But the use of trained ESP and the background of a parallel universe is more like the plot machinery used in science fiction.
The themes are significant. The book explores such topics as Power, choice, responsibility and identity. And if the issues are sometimes dark, there are always touches of humour to engage the reader.
Now we come to “The Candidate" the third book in the Viral Superhero series. As with its predecessors, the emphasis is on page-turning action effectively plotted. The general tone continues to have an ironic slant with reminders of an underlying cruelty.
What may annoy some readers is the fact that the novel ends with a cliffhanger. But that is a device that can be used very effectively. "The Princess of Mars" by Burroughs does exactly that. In fact the following novel, "The Gods of Mars" does the same forcing the reader to wait until "Warlords of Mars" finally concludes the sequence. Each cliffhanger introduced significant developments in setting and character. The cliffhanger in "The Candidate" also ushers in a major development in setting, characters and conflict. So far, this series has been exciting and interesting and the reader can look forward to more excitement and enjoyment.