Wednesday, 12 February 2020

#re3 Audiobook Review - The Diviners

  • Title And Author: The Diviners by Libba Bray
  • Publisher: Atom
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: Audiobook
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Bought 
  • Length: 583 Pages or 18 Hours 14 Minutes 

If you have followed the Pewter Wolf for quite some time, you would know that I have a bit of a history with The Diviners. I tried to read this when the book first came out and I DNFed it halfway through. A year or so later, I tried again, this time on audiobook and I finished it. And while there were things I did like, there were others things that I didn’t (I’ll pop link to that write-up here). So… what made me decide to go back? 

Answer: I have no idea. A few weeks before Christmas, I was looking up the second book in the Diviners series, Lair of Dreams, and after I returned an audiobook I disliked, I used the credit for that. I went “Well, if I’m going to listen to Lair, I should relisten to Diviners.” Once I thought of this, I was a little excited. Plus, as 2020 is my tenth year of blogging, this would be a nice way to celebrate - reread or relisten to some titles of my past. Plus, over the course of the next few weeks on me making this decision, I had somehow got my hands on the rest of the series so, guess what I’ll be planning to audiobook in the next few months! 

So, my relisten to Diviners...

Normally, I don’t do a recap when it comes to a #re3/reread but am going to do it as it’s been so long since I blogged this as seeing as I don’t know anyone who is reading this series as this series is coming to a close… 

1920s New York. The time for flappers, speakeasys, jazz and gin. Life is for partying. America survived the Great War. And New York is the centre of it all. 

And for Evie o’Neil, it’s her escape. After being sent to New York to live with her uncle after her latest scandal, Evie sees this as her chance to finally live. To be thoroughly modern and daring. To live life and come to terms with her gift. To be free of the past. 

But New York has a dark side. A killer is on the loose, killing people and calling each his offerings to the Beast. They’re all gruesome deaths. And the New York Police don’t know how the solve them nor stop the killer from striking again. 

Evie’s gift might be able to help. She can see things while touching items. She could use it to stop the killer. But if she’s not careful, the killer will see her and will go after her… 

And all the while, a bigger storm is coming…

I am still in two minds over this. Yes, still. Several years later, I am still torn over this. On the one hand, I am onboard with this series and I am going to see it through to the bitter end. This feels like a series I can really sink my teeth in. We have a murder mystery with a supernatural twist, combined two of my fave genres together - fantasy and crime. We have interesting, complex characters (both heroes and villains - the killer, Naughty John, hooked me!) and, because am more on ball than my first listen, I see that Libba is putting seeds down for the main overarching story for the series and is putting things in place for character development. 

However, I did struggle with this. I am not much of a historical reader so this feels very slow pace to me. Libba Bray has done her homework and she wants us to be immerse us in this world, both the good parts of history and the horrifying. But because of this, the pacing is slower than I am used to read. And a slower paced novel is going to be a struggle for me. Plus, certain characters make very dodgy decisions, which are very in keeping with their characters and will push the series forward, but make me go “ARGH!!!”. Plus, this is the first book in series so is setting everything up. On some counts, this was done really well and others… 

Like I said earlier, I am going to complete the series (am weirdly looking forward to doing so via audiobook - the narrator, January La Voy, is fabulous!) but this is very much a mix bag for me. I think I’ll have the face the fact that I am not much of a historical reader and this effected how I feel about this relisten and possibly the series as a whole…

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