"GNOSIS" BY RICK HALL

Posted by Matt McAvoy on Monday, April 29, 2019 Under: Book Reviews


“Gnosis” is generally entertaining and well-written by Rick Hall, even if, for my tastes, there aren’t things about it which particularly stand out.  It falls very firmly in the young-adult / sci-fi / fantasy camp and features all the usual formulaic elements of this contemporary cross-genre: the resourceful but unwitting teen heroine, with psychic abilities bordering on superpowers and shady government figures in pursuit, to either kill her or harness her ability.  The author himself, to my knowledge, does not fall into the young adult category (sorry, no offence Rick), and at times his sophistication – which really comes only from experience – betrays the YA narrative; not often, but just occasionally.  It is just as well that it does, though, because at times the language starts to grate a little, as does little Alexander; I have to admit, I did find the repeated use of the idiom “—or something” at the end of observations to be a wee bit lackadaisical and - whilst I am sure it was intentional, to befit the characters – perhaps it came across as nonchalant writing, which I am sure that Rick is not at all.  On the contrary, he is a good author, clearly, and his book is very professionally written.  Whilst I did note a handful of errors, which should really be proofread, particularly in some of the punctuation choices, other than this, the writing itself, and the dialogue, is decent.

Regarding the plot of “Gnosis”: albeit with the addition of a couple of “Happy”-style brain manifestations called trella gondii - which, in the case of the lead character, takes the form of a young, naïve and caring boy - the storyline is a rather generic one.  Yet, despite this, whilst overall it is a simple enough read, it did become something of an effort to remain engaged – I think, perhaps, because of the sheer number of events occurring, from one scene to the next.  Beyond the main plot points I have mentioned, the story otherwise becomes very – and unnecessarily - convoluted.  As we explore each character’s additional trella gondii symptoms - which generally take the form of supernatural kinetic abilities, such as technokinesis, telekinesis and pyrokinesis - I started to become baffled by the whole dynamic of Sam (the heroine) and Alexander (her manifestation) in respect of the things they were actually able to do – not because these things are not clear, but more because they are not kept simple enough.  I personally believe the book would be a great deal more entertaining if it were shorter and on a less ambitious scale, with a less involved storyline; it is quite long, and does feel it, in parts.  The fantasy element doesn’t really benefit this book a great deal; what it does is necessitate more scenes and expand the word count, to the point where, unfortunately, at times it feels like things are just happening, one after another, in what is otherwise quite a simple YA storyline; I have to admit that by midway, I was starting to read with half an eye. 

In the long term, “Gnosis” comes together ably enough, if unsurprisingly.  Overall, though, I found myself thinking that it could be vastly improved by tweaking – and simplifying its story.  To end on a positive note, though, Rick knows his genre and has created an interesting ensemble of characters, I am sure, with half an eye on a sequel.  So, for those who like to read this sort of book, I would recommend keeping an eye on Rick Hall and Samantha Black.


In : Book Reviews 


Tags: rick-hall  young-adult  fantasy  sci-fi 
LATEST BOOK REVIEWS:

*****
Role Play


****
Drama


***
Satire


****
Comedy


****
Comedy


****
Comedy


****
Fantasy


*****
Self Improvement


****
Action


****
Short Stories


***
Historical Fiction


*****
Children's


*****
Drama


****
Drama


*****
Political Thriller


***
Short Stories


****
Poetry


****
Historical Fiction


***
Autobiography


****
Philosophy


****
Thriller


****
YA / Fantasy


****
Children's


***
Suspense/Thriller


***
Sci-Fi/Fantasy


***
Adventure


****
Horror


****
Short Stories


****
Crime Drama


*****
Poetry


*****
Children's


****
Documentary


****
Historical Thriller


****
Fantasy


****
Horror


***
Comedy


***
Horror


*****
Comedy-Drama


****
Comedy


***
Crime Adventure


***
Young Adult


*****
Historical Fiction


*****
War Memoir


****
Short Stories


*****
War Memoir


****
Real Life


*****
Comedy-Drama


***
Fantasy


****
Poetry


*****
Short Stories


***
Fantasy


*****
Business


***
Historical Fiction


***
Children's


*****
Poetry


***
Historical Fiction


*****
Science


***
Poetry


*****
Short Stories


*****
Self-Help


****
Fantasy


****
Self-Help


****
Short Stories


*****
Fantasy


***
Drama


****
Children's


****
Comedy


****
Biography


****
Short Stories


***
Supernatural


**
Documentary


****
Historical Fantasy


*****
Documentary


***½
Thriller


***
Non-Fiction


***
Crime Thriller

Tags

1990s a-scholte abortion abuse action addiction afterlife ajay-shankar alejandro-de-gutierre alexander-the-great alphabet american-comedy american-graffiti american-history ancient ancient-history animal-abuse animal-rescue animal-welfare anthology anthony-michaelides anthony-simola anti-hero anxiety arabian artificial-intelligence atlantis australia autobiography bereavement biography bittersweet bizarre blind bo-wu boats books borneo brian-kindall british business catholic cats chad-lee-erway challenge childhood children's christ christian christianity christina-williams christopher-adam clinchandhill clint-thurmon coffee-break cognitive collection colonialism comedy corporate-crime cory-barclay coup creatures crime criminal-justice crm cruelty cynical dark data data-analytics david-donachie david-grad david-lee-fish demons detective diary dictatorship diet disability dog-rescue dogs drama drugs dwayne-gill dystopian ea-minin earthquake ecological educational egyptian emergency emmanuella-hristova emotional empire environmental espionage faith fallacious-rose family fantasy fiction fiona-green flash-fiction frances-bloom friendship frontier funny futuristic george-dalrymple george-koloukis glyn-haynie gm-o'connor god gods gory greg-hickey health health-and-fitness heartbreaking heather-beal henry-woodiss high-school historical historical-fiction history holistic horror illustrated immigrants international internet ira irish j-kariuki jacinta-jade jennifer-macaire jesus jill-kearney john-simpson journal jungle justice ka-cummins kurt-cobain kyla-ross lady-byrd laura-eckert laura-hergane laura-koerber legendary leigh-holland life lin-wilder lindsay-mccall lindsey-mccall lorna-brown loss lynne-renoir marc-curtis-little maria-luisa-lang marine-life martin-freznell mathematics matt-nagin medical medical-drama medieval melodrama memoir mermaids michael-a.-greco michael-irwin military mind mjl-evans monologue myrtle-brooks mystery mythical natural-disaster navy new-jersey new-york nick-dream nirvana non-fiction norman-aj-berisford northern-ireland novella nutrition observations oppression otherworld outback pablo-palazuelo persia personal-development pharaoh philosophy pirates platoon poetry political political-thriller pop-culture prison pro-life psychology purgatory puzzle race racial rae-louise rainforest reading real-life redemption reference regime relationship religion religious remorse revolutionary richard-bunning richard-hacker rick-hall robert-kingett role-play roman romania rural sailing sailors satire sci-fi science seafaring self-confidence self-help sexual sexual-harassment short-stories sigal-haber sitcom slavery slice-of-life society sociopath soldier special-forces sports spy-thriller stage-fright stan-skrabut steve-bassett study superhero supernatural superstition surreal swashbuckling teamwork technology teen the-troubles theodor theological thriller tim time-travel tomi-farrell torture tough-guy tragedy true-story tv-shows undersea vampire venezuela ventskevitch veteran vietnam vietnam-war vigilante vince-rockston violent walt-sautter war war-memoir weight-loss well-being werewolf western white wildlife will-link yorkshire young-adult
Website designed and created by MJV SERVICES, UNITED KINGDOM 2016 - all rights reserved.
*The author has established copyright for all work featured on this website.