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The Dark Volume av Gordon Dahlquist
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The Dark Volume (utgåvan 2009)

av Gordon Dahlquist

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
4141347,878 (3.42)9
Awakening from a fevered delerium, Celeste finds herself in a fishing village on the remote Iron Coast, and is propelled into a quest that will draw her into a realm of reckless, lawless terror.
Medlem:zojo
Titel:The Dark Volume
Författare:Gordon Dahlquist
Info:Subterranean (2009), Edition: Signed Limited, Hardcover, 528 pages
Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek
Betyg:
Taggar:Ingen/inga

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The Dark Volume av Gordon Dahlquist

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Visa 1-5 av 13 (nästa | visa alla)
I got lost towards the end - too many factions and characters and a slow pace. ( )
  phcallefr | Aug 15, 2020 |
Dahlquist's 'The Dark Volume' really is a page-turner! I literally couldn't stop myself reading page by page by page until it was finished and I enjoyed all of it as much as the first in the series. As a Crime/Mystery Fiction novel, Dahlquist's novel really fits the bill, it's full of danger, corruption and dastardly plans to take over the world, one mind at a time. The characters are brutal and damaged but brilliantly portrayed with as much detail to their persona's as to make them real to life. The book is written eloquently and is full of suspense with each twist and turn, reeling you into the mystery and the character's criminal activities.
Definitely a book to be read by all crime and mystery fans and I'm most certainly looking forward to the next, hoping once more that all evil plans can be conquered after all (but with Dahlquist's favour for suspense and cliff-hangers, I really doubt it!) ( )
  Charlotte1162 | Nov 29, 2017 |
Not a patch on the Glass Books. Dahlquist sounds tired and by the end so was I. ( )
  Lukerik | Oct 8, 2015 |
The original Glass Books of the Dream Eaters – the first book in the series, was initially published as a single volume – not the two volumes commonly seen and reviewed here - the first with a cliffhanger ending, which I hate so much. This was the doing of the second publisher, who split the novel, obviously thinking that a 768 page novel was too much for today's ADD type audiences. Too bad, they screwed that up. Now, with the Dark Volume, what is truly the second book in the series, Dahlquist's ending is not really an ending that we would think of a series ending. It is true, there are no more books out by Mr. Dahlquist, so I am going to have to settle for what is actually written in these two books to satisfy whatever curiosity I have, and settle I must, as I find that the ending was not satisfactory at all. This last volume is different from the other. It does have the same characters, the same cadence, the same wonderful characterization and imagery, the rich weirdos, the Evil Cabal, and everything else we found in The Glass Books, but there is something missing from this work that it's hard to describe – an essential part, that was included in the previous volume that isn't here. Dahlquist is still writing in tip top shape, its just that he seems to stall and repeat himself in the middle of the volume, but once we get toward the ending, its classic Dahlquist all the way. It turns out Johnny Depp and his Infinitum Nihil production company has opted the film rights for the Glass Books of the Dream Eaters and is developing the project as we speak. This is very exciting news, as the work is very cinematic already, and would work on the silver screen quite nicely. I wonder who our three heroes would be? And the Rich Weirdos? I vote for Angelina Jolie for the Contessa.

THE PLOT: As we left our heroes in book two (or the end of book one, if you bought the combined volume), they had just survived a Battle Royale on an airship bound for Macklenburg with the Comte, the Contessa, Harold Crabbe, Francis Xonck, Caroline Stearne, Roger Bascombe, Dr. Lorenz, and Eloise DuJong. Our heroes are asked to reveal what they know about the factions and secrets of the Cabal before they are put to death – which is when all the trouble starts, between the Cabal. With Cardinal Chang, Dr, Svenson and Miss Temple egging them on – the Rich Weirdos of the Evil Cabal turn on each other with a ferocity only seen in beasts of the jungle. When the smoke clears the only people alive are our three heroes, Eloise DuJong, who has been helping them, and the Contessa, who has stationed herself on the roof of the airship – which is sinking, because she has jammed the controls and slashed the airbags. Soon the airship has hit the water. Our heroes scramble to the top, but there is no sign of the Contessa – they assume she has jumped off and drowned in the sea, due to the weight of her clothing. Amazingly, on the other side of the gasbag, they see shore. They swim there and lodge with locals. Mysterious murders being to happen. Stable boys whose throats have been ripped out, a fisherman stabbed, an entire family with their throats ripped out, our heroes can no longer stay. But are these murders the work of one or more Cabal members? Did the Contessa really die or is that her out there? And what about the one murder that looked completely different from the rest – who did that? Our heroes make their way singly, closer and closer to London, only to find the Government in complete turmoil and under the control of the Blue Glass Woman – Mrs. Marchmoor who is controlling the Duke, who advises the Queen. Later they find another of the Cabal still alive, yet mortally ill, due to his ingestion of blue glass to stop his fatal wounding on the airship. He wreaks havoc everywhere he goes. And then there is Charlotte Trapping and her children – of which Eloise DuJong was the tutor. The Government now has the children in their power. Who will side against whom? And where are the Comte's transformation machines? They've been removed from Harschmort House, but where did they go? And who moved them? This moving of the machines must have been planned from the very beginning, as everyone was supposed to be in Macklenburg for a month celebrating the Prince and Princesses wedding. Who had the most to gain? This plot is more byzantine than the last plot, in that you go deeper into the minds and plots of the enemies with in the Cabal, and their secret plans for treachery that are just now executing. It seems there is a lot more to the treachery of the members of the Cabal then anyone even knew. Come with me and find out how deep this treachery goes – read the book and see how each member planned to take over The Process, and hence the power and the Governments of the World from the others. It is a wild ride. For plot I give this novel a 10/10

THE CHARACTERIZATION: As always, Dahlquist drives everything forward with characterization. Everything is a facet of characterization – the action, the dialogue, peoples movements, their plans, their descriptions, everything that happens deepens his characterization of each character. We get to meet new people in this book that we previously did not know, including Charlotte Trapping, the widow of the murdered Colonel Trapping, Alfred Leveret – a flunky of Francis Xonck at Xonck Armaments, Mr. Harcourt, Mr. Phelps, Mr. Soume along with other functionaries working for the Duke of Stalmaere who is actually dead, but is being used as a puppet by the Blue Glass Woman – Mrs. Marchmoor. These people are strictly under full mind control and don't remember Mrs. Marchmoor at all, but believe the Duke is alive. Their physical condition is deteriorating rapidly as they go about the Glass Woman's business, a side effect of the mind control. They will all be dead soon. Mr. Rawsbarth was the assistant to Roger Bascombe, former fiance to Miss Temple and Cabal member who was killed on the airship. Rawsbarth has decided to take power into his own hands and grab as much as he can now that his boss is out of the picture. Rawsbarth too is under mind control, though he does not know it. He, too will be dead soon. His characterization was done brilliantly. A greedy man who sees opportunity everywhere, now that his superiors have all gone missing, and simply wants to fill the vacuum of power left by those dead, with himself. He is a grasping, venal, demanding, selfish, little man whose overriding goal is to climb as high as possible in the social structure grabbing as much money and power as possible. This is his opportunity. Dahlquist does an outstanding job with every character in this book – right down to the butlers and maids – using their gestures, speech and every detail about them to bring together a characterization that is spot on. For characterization, I give this novel a 10/ 10.

THE IMAGERY: Dahlquist is a tour de force of imagery – there are a number of settings that he describes beautifully, but especially the one location that they pass through shortly after they leave the Iron Coast, as they travel toward London in a cart. It was Celeste Temple and Eloise DuJong together in the back of a cart on their way to the city of Karthe – they passed through an area where black rocks seemed to raise up from the ground – like the bones of the world, left out for millenia. Black and stark for all to see, they rose up to the sky, with grasses below - the basalt foundation of the world. I can think of no more dreary place than this, as they traveled mile after mile, through the same landscape, covered by those stones. Now I can't describe it like Dahlquist – not by a mile, but his imagery is so imaginative, so cinematic, that he sets it up, then lets it play out like a movie – covering all five senses – touch, taste, scent, hearing and sight. For Imagery, I give this novel, a 10/10.

THE GORE SCORE: This novel did have some significant violence, though it is not nearly as bad as some of the novels that I've read lately, you do need to know that there is bloodshed, decapitation, stabbing, shooting, exploding people, and some of the descriptions of the results of this violence while graphic is not gratuitous. A lot of people die in this book. The factions are at war with each other – there are armies of trained soldiers involved. Mobs get involved as well, so slaughter would not be an inappropriate word to use for the ending. Just be warned. For a Gore Score, I give this novel, a 7/10.

THE DIALOGUE: Dahlquist uses dialogue as a facet of characterization. The Contessa, being a quick, smart and aggressive person, has quick, smart and aggressive dialogue. The Comte, being a big, slow, thinking-type of person – speaks more slowly and thoughtfully. He clearly thinks before he speaks. He uses words sparingly. When he is inspired, as when he is speaking of his Process, he speaks passionately. This is all part of his character. Celeste is a talker. She not only speaks to everyone, she also speaks inside her own head quite regularly with a running dialogue that rarely stops. This too is part of her character. Dr. Svenson too, has a running dialogue inside his head. He is a thinker. When he speaks, it is authoritative. He knows what he is talking about. He is correct in his topic and facts. He makes suppositions and logic leaps that are correct as well. He is actually quite brilliant, but no one has recognized that fact, especially him. Cardinal Chang too is brilliant – he does not speak often, only when he knows that he will get the desired result will he speak. He too has a running dialogue in his head. He is amazing at putting facts together to come up with conclusions that are spot on. His leaps in logic are amazing and correct. He and Doctor Svenson helped the most to make the Cabal turn upon itself in the airship, by putting the pieces together after gathering information at Harschmort House and elsewhere to determine who was doing what to whom. It was quite impressive. He spoke concisely and to the point – putting words together effectively and spinning them effortlessly to get the most vicious response out of the Cabal members. It worked. He does this later with Dr. Svenson as well in the Dark Volume. For Dialogue, I give this novel, a 9/10.

THE PACING: The pacing of this novel, unlike the first one, was inconsistent. The first third of the novel was done at breakneck speed. This matched the pace of the entire first novel, (or if you read it in two volumes, the first two volumes), but then we reach a section that was quite different. It was funny, but I was reminded quite strongly of The Lord of the Rings trilogy movie series, where Strider, Legolas, and Gimli are constantly running across mountains, meadows and forests. Every time that happened in the movie, I would laugh. Believe me, it happened often. “Off they go!” I would say, laughing uproariously. How many times did they do that in the movie? I didn't count, but my best guess is about thirty seven. The second third of the novel is just like that. And then they started running...It gets tiresome to say the least. It does not move the action forward at all, and while, it does move the characters to a different physical spot, and a very few things do actually happen, it is all set up for the Big Battle Royale of the ending. Dahlquist just needs to get all his characters in one single place for the big ending. In my opinion, he could have done a much better job of it. It was boring to say the least. While I didn't laugh, it was too boring for laughter, I did wish that many pages had been excised, and he had found another way for the characters to all end up at the same place without all the shenanigans that he put them through. The last third of the book was back to the breakneck pace I was used to. The Big Battle Royale, put the one at the end of the first book to shame. More on that later. For pacing, I give this novel, a 6/10.

THE ENDING: This was the Biggest Battle Royale since – well, I don't know. It was simply humungous. People changing sides, so many factions vying for power, everyone wanting The Process, the original Cabal members down to four Francis Xonck – a zombie who had ingested blue glass to heal his fatal wounds and was dying, the Contessa, Mrs. Marchmoor – the Blue Glass Woman and The Comte put into another body but tainted by death. Our three heroes are still alive and watching the action as prisoners, but they have been forever changed by their proximity to the Blue Glass and their dealings with the Cabal. The other people and government soldiers pulled in by Mrs. Marchmoor and mercenaries pulled in by Alfred Leveret on behalf of Francis Xonck, before Francis became a monster, as well as Charlotte Trapping, who has her own game to play. All want The Process and the machines that make people do their will, making them slaves to their bidding so that they can rule the World, starting with the Government of England and moving on to Macklenburg. All factions are ruthless, and won't hesitate to wipe all the others out, include Charlotte Trappings child, who is present. The battle begins, and doesn't end, until almost all factions are slaughtered. Who will come out on top? Who will own The Process? Will England ever be the same again? Does the Cabal regroup and succeed? What about our heroes? Do they come out unscathed? The ending left me feeling that there was another book in the works, but I have seen nothing to indicate that this is true. For an ending, the dramatic tension is intense, and it did tie up many lose ends that were floating around from the previous books, but it opened up new avenues to explore, just like a middle book in a series would. For an ending, I give this book a 7/10.

THE UPSHOT: I was rather disappointed overall in this book. While I loved this first third and the last third of the book, the second third of the book consisted solely of the characters running around in separate directions and winding up at the same destination. As I said previously, it was like The Lord of the Rings trilogy movie series, where Strider, Legolas, and Gimli ran everywhere about thirty seven times, except our heroes ran separately to their destinations. Sometimes they were at the same destination, but did not meet when there, which, quite frankly, was disappointing. The second third of the book could be titled, And Then They Ran Around. The final third of the book was when they met up, which was when things really started to happen again. That's when the Big Battle Royale occurred, and what a spectacle that was. Overall, it was a good read, but nothing as good as the first book at all. Maybe, Dahlquist had trouble bringing his characters together for the Big Battle Royale – I don't know, but he fumbled this one. For a score, this novel, gets a score of 53/60 which gives it 5 stars. For a total of over 1000 pages, one would think that you could get an entire story across, but it looks like, out in the wind somewhere, there might be more. Stay tuned, as we will update you, if we hear anything about a third book.

MLB Star Scale

50 – 60 5 Stars
40 – 49 4 Stars
30 – 39 3 Stars
20 – 29 2 Stars
10 – 19 1 Stars
00 – 09 0 Stars
( )
  Molecular | Feb 21, 2014 |
Great, as expected. Miss Temple is definitely my hero. I don't want to talk about it... I finished and my heart wouldn't stop beating, hehe ( )
  ScarletBea | Apr 4, 2013 |
Visa 1-5 av 13 (nästa | visa alla)
Since most of the pleasure of The Dark Volume, GW Dahlquist's sequel to The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters, lies in the twists and surprises of its Gordian plot, be warned that there are spoilers ahead. In fact, you shouldn't read the blurb on the book either, as it tells you things you wouldn't otherwise discover for 200 pages. The title doesn't reveal anything, though, the dark volume in question only gradually surfacing from the muddy waters of a novel that's never as clear as it should be.
tillagd av simon_carr | ändraThe Guardian, Patrick Ness (Jun 28, 2008)
 
The Dark Volume is the second part of GW Dahlquist's Glass Books Trilogy. The first book, which you don't have to read, but really should, established the heroes – the daring virgin Miss Temple, the assassin Cardinal Chang and the compromised Dr Svenson – and the nefarious technology of blue glass, which can capture memories, store them, and play them into other minds. It also killed off all the villains – dun dun da! – or did it? The heroes are cast ashore and apart; someone – but who? – is killing the local villagers. They leave trails of blue clay as if – but how? – some of the wicked Cabal has survived.
tillagd av simon_carr | ändraThe Scotsman, Stuart Kelly (Jun 8, 2008)
 

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Awakening from a fevered delerium, Celeste finds herself in a fishing village on the remote Iron Coast, and is propelled into a quest that will draw her into a realm of reckless, lawless terror.

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