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The Strangers Woe’s by Max Frei

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

The irresistible newest novel by the bestselling Max Frei, set in a magical city where losers make good.
The Labyrinths of Echo series —the adventures of Max, who was once a loser but discovers a new world —has been an international literary sensation since its debut. In this second installment, Sir Max is still a hardened smoker, an uncomplicated glutton, and a loafer, but once again, he gets lucky. He travels to the parallel world of Echo, where magic is commonplace and where he fits right in. Plunging back into the astounding and absurd realm first portrayed inThe Stranger('s #1 Book of 2009), this is a sequel of addictive power, blending fantasy, horror, philosophy, and comedy. Readers will welcome this "utterly original" (Bookslut) volume of the new adventures and misadventures of Sir Max in this enchanting world.

Barnes and Noble Summary

This is the second installment of the Echo series staring Max Frei. Again, this book was once in Russian, so I’m always thinking how different the original story is. The last book had readers saying that some of the characters’ wits were missing as well as some plot points, so I was nervous to start, thinking I won’t see what readers in Russia did. If you don’t compare this book to anything (which is hard if you don’t speak Russian) this was a very nice book. Don’t let this talk of “It’s not as good when translated!” get you down; it has an interesting plot, the characters blend well together, and are entertaining and charming. Some of the characters were one-dimensional, but I found that to be okay in this book because their background isn’t really necessary to make the plot move forward. Adding too much information about the characters will make the book drag on, which no one wants.  What I really liked are the names in the book, such as “Foofloss” and “Boboota”. I found myself saying these names out loud like a crazy person, just to hear what they’re saying (which ended up making me laugh).

This is a series of stories; it’s not all one big plot. At times, I did get confused and the questions the reader may have had in the first book had not been answered in this one, but it’s not bad enough to put down. Unlike the first book, I became absorbed in Max’s life and was amused until the very end. I loved reading more about the characters and even if it wasn’t as good as the original, I found myself enjoying it! The series has (I believe) 8 books in Russian, so the translators are still working on them (I hope). I’ll definitely devour the next installment.

5/5 Stars

*Reviewed by Rachel*

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This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews.