The Prey of Gods by Nicky Drayden

preyofEvery now and again a book comes along that is just so very different from the norm that it takes you by storm.  You find yourself in that wonderful bubble where just you and the book exist and regular mundane necessities such as eating, sleeping and going to work become annoyingly bothersome.  Prey of Gods felt just like that for me, it made me smile, it’s just wickedly different and utterly compelling and I loved it.

I’m not going to compare The Prey of Gods to other books or authors but what I would say is that over the past couple of years I’ve enjoyed a number of books that felt incredibly original and managed to inject something new into my reading not to mention made me just smile in the most unexpected way, books such as The Mechanical by Ian Tregillis or the Mancy series by Ferrett Steinmetz and this book had that certain something too, a breathtaking originality that simply makes books like these a pleasure to read.  So, as you can probably tell, I quite liked this one 😀

However, after much gushing I’m going to say that this is a difficult book to review.  Firstly, there’s a lot going on – a fact that largely escaped me whilst reading because I was so totally gripped – but it became apparent when I started to write this review.  Basically I didn’t want to write about the plot because it’s more than likely that I would make the book sound convoluted and whilst this is a clever read with many elements that are surprising it’s not a difficult read because the author has pulled it all together so very well.  It would also be very easy to spoil the surprises that spring up along the way and as so much of this book just made me smile I don’t want to spoil that experience for others. So no plot overview although I may just tantalise you by mentioning the cold and bloodthirsty demi goddess who has plans of world domination, the politician who turns into a singing and dancing diva sensation by night, hallucinogenic drugs that help to bring out the strangest traits, AIs with plans to rise up and throw off their shackles, a great setting and an almost comic book zaniness that is simply awesome.  How can you possibly resist?

Set in a futuristic South Africa where virtually everybody has their own robots this is a strange mix of science fiction and myth and almost a blending of the two but for me, the absolute winning element is the characters.  They steal the show – not easy to steal a show like this where there are so many entertaining elements  but you’ll just have to believe me – the characters are great and all so completely different.  I really enjoyed all their different stories and the cunning way in which they all come together.

This is a crazy eclectic bunch of people.  Like I said, there is a demi Goddess and she is one mean character, there’s a young girl who turns out to be so much more, a pop star with a secret illness, a politician who lives a double life and a young man who finds himself in love with his best friend.  The thing with all of them is they’re all flawed and they make mistakes – some of them BIG mistakes with huge consequences.

This is certainly a book that pulls no punches.  Yes, there is plenty to smile at with good writing, unusual ideas and witty dialogue but there is also a level of dark brutality to the story.  It almost has a disaster story feel at points with huge numbers falling victim to the ongoing conflicts.  Be aware that although this has plenty of humour and a highly entertaining cast of characters it is dark and at times rather bloody but at the same time it doesn’t make you feel uncomfortable – I think there is such a lot going on that the focus is simply elsewhere and the bloody elements are not overly focused on.

On the whole, I have no criticisms at all.  I loved this and would definitely recommend it although I realise that maybe it won’t be everyone’s cup of tea – yes, there is definitely a level of strange going on here that might not appeal to one and all but I can’t wait to read more and I would urge others to give it a go.

I received a copy courtesy of the publisher through Edelweiss for which my thanks.  The above is my own opinion.

 

 

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9 Responses to “The Prey of Gods by Nicky Drayden”

  1. Tammy

    You’ve just reminded me that I need to push this to the top of my TBR! I’m so glad you loved it. I’ve yet to read a bad review:-)

    • @lynnsbooks

      It was brilliant. I loved it. It’s still making me smile to myself even now.
      Lynn 😀

  2. maddalena@spaceandsorcery

    Every review I’ve read of this book praises its innovative take on story-telling and the great characters: I find both elements impossible to resist, but reading that you had problems coming up for air while you were immersed in it, is the strongest kind of recommendation I could think of 🙂
    Thanks for sharing!

    • @lynnsbooks

      I loved this. it was so good and just blew me away.
      Lynn 😀

  3. sjhigbee

    Wow – this one sounds amazing!

  4. Mogsy @ BiblioSanctum

    Oh why does my tbr have to be like five miles long right now? I totally want to give this one a read! Added to my wishlist and hopefully I can fit it in during my catch-up months later this year 😀

    • @lynnsbooks

      Your TBR must be outrageous – it makes me feel dizzy the number of books you get sent for review. Hope you get a chance to get to this one.
      Lynn 😀

  5. June: My Month in Review | Books and travelling with Lynn

    […] The Prey of Gods by Nicky Drayden […]

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