Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Book Review - The Skin Map

The Skin Map by Stephen R. Lawhead

Here is what the back of the book had to say:
"It is the ultimate quest for the ultimate treasure. Chasing a map tattooed on human skin. Across an omniverse of intereing realities. To unravel the future of the future.

Kit Livingston's great-grandfather appears to him in a deserted alley during a tumultuous storm. He reveals an unbelievable story: that the ley lines throughout Britain are not merely the stuff of legend or the weekend hobby of deluded cranks, but pathways to other worlds. To those who know how to use them, they grant the ability to travel the multi-layered universe of which we ordinarily inhabit only a tiny part.

One explorer knew more than most. Braving every danger, he toured both time and space on voyages of heroic discovery. Ever on his guard, and fearful of becoming lost in the cosmos, he developed an intricate code--a roadmap of symbols--that he tattooed onto his own body. This Skin Map has since been lost in time. Now the race is on to recover all the pieces and discover its secrets.

But the Skin Map itself is not the ultimate goal. It is merely the beginning of a vast and marvelous quest for a prize beyond imagining.
The Bright Empires series-from acclaimed author Stephen Lawhead-is a unique blending of epic treasure hunt, ancient history, alternate realities, cutting-edge physics, philosophy, and mystery. The result is a page-turning, fantastical adventure like no other." 
This is the first book in the series and with its numerous set of characters you have to start with this one. You first meet Kit on his way to his kind-of girlfriend Mina's home. From then through the rest of this book I don't really like Kit. He is this whiny follower type of guy that just doesn't appeal to me. Mina on the other hand is first told to you from Kit's perspective which is not positive. But through the rest of the book you see her take charge and really lead. As for Kit's Great Grandpa he seems like someone you would want to sit down and chat with for hours.  
The story line takes off right away; I like that in a book. I don't want chapter after chapter of character building, I want to learn about them through actions. Lawhead does a great job with showing the character's true character through the choices they make.
The history shown in each timeline is superb. Watching as each character adapts to their new surroundings, Lawhead makes each era so real. One of my favorite timelines was seeing Kaffe (or Coffee) make such an impression on Prague.  The ending does leave you needing to read book two in order to get some answers. Lawhead does a teaser at the end.
The negative I would have to say is there are so many characters and timelines throughout the book that it is hard to keep them all straight. There also seems to be a few spots especially at the end that seem to jump ahead (or offer no explanation on how they got there) that was a little odd to me.
But over all this was a good read. I have already started book two, The Bone House. It was outside my normal choice in books and was well worth the change in genre.

Disclosure: I received this book free of charge from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com blogger book reviewer program, in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed are my own. (Disclosed in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255, “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”)
~ Cassi
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...