The Hazards of Love by P.T. DillowayP.T.s Scarlet Knight series just keeps getting better and better.
Its been five years since the first book. Emma is now Assistant Director and comfortably ensconced in her role as super hero and protector of Rampart City. Only she has no idea the trouble brewing in Egypt when an ancient goddess seizes the body of an innocent woman and sets on a course to restore to power the terrible Black Dragoon in a bid to once and for all conquer the world.
I really like how Patrick revisited all of the characters weve grown used to in the previous expansions. We learn more of the ghost Marlin and the flame of his former love who has waited 4000 years for him in the afterlife. We really get some development with the witches Mrs. Chiostro and Sylvia, and I gotta say, these two are probably my favorite characters thus far in the series. Mrs. Chiostro brings the thunder in this book with an awesome display of sorcery that is really pulled off well. And the climactic scene in the chamber of Isis has just the right pacing and an outcome that I didnt foresee. I like that when an author can fool me into thinking Ive got something figured out and then it doesnt turn out like I thought it would.
Patrick is a clever writer.
For those readers who have grown used to some of the secondary characters in this tale, be warned that Patrick cleans house. By the time the last paragraph is read, nothing will be the same in Rampart City. In many ways, her life is nothing but an endless tragedy. I kind of wonder when Patrick will let her have some happiness. But she accepts her charge well, and is nothing but the bravest of souls to face down such terrible evil that comes encroaching upon her turf.
I recommend this book to readers of all ages. Its filled with adventure, cool Egyptian flavor, life lessons, and magic. Fans of Percy Jackson, Harry Potter, and even R.L. Stine will no doubt read this novel in a single setting.
The Decemberists: The Hazards of Love
Generally favorable reviews - based on 31 Critics What's this? Universal acclaim - based on 98 Ratings. See all 31 Critic Reviews. See all 35 User Reviews. The Hazards Of Love.
The Decemberists make for a particularly twee-tolerant type of fan. If you like them, it's likely you've made peace with the somewhat self-indulgent which is not to say unwarranted baroque lyricism and folklore narrative-as-album frame technique. And there's even a certain level of pretentiousness that one comes to expect and often value from this Portland-based ensemble; references to mariners, dirigibles, and the ghosts of babies birthed in dry ravines are not only par for the quirky course but also part of what makes the band so lovable in the first place. So it should come as no stretch nor any real surprise that The Decemberists' newest album, The Hazards of Love takes the form of that vaunted exercise in musical construction: the rock-opera. The track album is good, definitely, and left me with the sneaking suspicion that in the hopefully long and future history of rock operas this particular one will go down as a success. But that doesn't mean the album isn't without it's extraneous eccentricities. The three-plus minute long instrumental and organ-heavy "Prelude," while undoubtedly a useful scene-setter in performance, feels a little unnecessary on the album itself and is likely to become a full-fledged annoyance when trying to lazily set the iPod on shuffle.
What you need to know is that Margaret falls in love with a supernatural being in the forest, but the forest queen is none too pleased. Meanwhile The Rake, who killed his own children, kidnaps Margaret in order to kill her. Broadway wishes it had something this engrossing. Shara Warden aka My Brightest Diamond voices the forest queen and interjects her objections to the love between the forest dweller lead vocalist Colin Meloy and Margaret sung by Becky Stark, aka Lavender Diamond. Warden steals the show with her vindictive growl, operatic trills, and a fierce guitar riff. With a sneering maternal tone she explains to the forest dweller how she found him as a child and raised him, and in a beat becomes a venomous mother defending her family.
Colin Meloy - (New Song!) Hazards of Love
Both are laden with orchestral motifs and movements crisply executed with standard rock instrumentation. The Hazards Of Love, then, stands as a culmination of all these tendencies. This thumbnail description makes the album sound stultifying, but this is far from the case, thanks to a steady stream of surprises and a depth of detail that reveals itself incrementally. But it takes just one listen for the key melodies, refrains and riffs to ingrain themselves, because they keep leaping out of the fabric. As always, Meloy sings with the accent of an American actor imitating an Englishman in a s film, and one might expect that this stylised approach might get tiresome over time. In the US The Decemberists are now on their second major label album both The Crane Wife and this are on Capitol and their following has grown to the extent that they filled the 18,seat Hollywood Bowl in a concert with the LA Philharmonic. CM: As far as I can tell, the Brit folk revivalists were by and large drawn to songs that involved drinking, murder and rape.
T he relationship between American alt-rock and the British folk revival of the 60s is a surprising one. You might think an impassable cultural and aesthetic gulf lay between the two genres, but there's evidence of an intermittent transatlantic love affair. The blanched, taut solos of Television were indebted to Richard Thompson's attempts to develop a blues-free language for the electric guitar. More recently, erstwhile Pavement frontman Stephen Malkmus coaxed Vashti Bunyan back on stage for the first time in 30 years. But no recent US alt-rock band has delved quite so deeply into the world of British folk as the Decemberists, ostensibly an acclaimed indie rock quartet big on wry, bookish narrative songs.
Always defined by their eccentricities, the Decemberists offer a tangled narrative set to thick stoner-metal sludge and prog-folk arpeggios. Nobody got into the Decemberists for the riffs. In other ways, though, the theatrical Portland folk-rockers' noble sojourn into heavy narrative prog-folk was probably always in the stars. Ornately antiquarian diction was their Ziggy Stardust. Ginormous song suites based on world folklore were their deaf, dumb, and blind kid. Yes, they were meant for The Wall. But it would still work as a rock record, so that's where it ended up.