Academ’s Fury by Jim Butcher
Review by David Stoit
‘Academ’s Fury’ is the second book in ‘The Codex Alera’ series. ‘Furies of Calderon’ I grudgingly gave a pretty high 7.2. Perhaps a little too high, because there were quite a few points that bothered me a bit.
Anyway… I had high expectations for book two, ‘Furies of Calderon’ as it did have the potential to be the start of a great series. But for me it just didn’t work as it was supposed to.
The story starts and is filled with non-stop action. That in itself is certainly not a bad thing, Butcher always manages to create a story that drags me in its fast current and delivers quite the flash.
Another positive thing was that some of my questions that arose after reading the first book were answered. It does sound a bit cliché but sometimes when questions are answered only more arise. Well, not completely in this story but it is actually not that far off.
Here we go:
In this book there are multiple story lines again, varying from a potentially apocalyptic alien take-over to a feminist ‘political’. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t have anything against strong female characters and I do certainly enjoy reading about underdogs getting to where they deserve to be by hardship, it doesn’t matter if that is a girl or a guy. But in this story it was unrealistically overdone and out of balance.
The thing I really disliked is the lack of world building. The biggest part of the story takes place in the capitol of ‘Alera’ and its main castle. But even after reading the story I don’t have a clue about what the place looks like, is it like an ‘Ankh-Morpork’, ‘Gormenghast’ or a ‘Minas Tirith’? Perhaps it was Butcher’s intention to give the reader a lot to fill in themselves. Perhaps it is his way of filling in a niche in the genre, a kind of less is more. However, I didn’t like it.
The characters are generally the same as in the first story. There isn’t much character evolvement that I was aware off. I can’t really explain how precisely but to me it seems like the characters are meant to be something or somebody they are almost. They say about the right things and even do the right actions but seem to fall just short to reach credibility.
There was some relationship evolvement, which I liked a lot because it didn’t only add a bit of humanity but mostly because it added some info about the culture of the Marat.
Perhaps I am a bit too harsh about this book, but I’ve read quite a bit of Butcher’s and even though the action is superb, I feel some things lack and I know he can do better.
So, in a nutshell. This book is not for everyone. If you want something easy to read with an abundance of action this is the right choice. If you’ve read a lot and you want more or something really original, don’t waste your money.
Aks from India
Seriously a 4?
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