Reviews

Les Somnambules, by Chuck Wendig

ishouldreadthat's review against another edition

Go to review page

Have to ponder this one a bit. Some amazing bits, some less amazing bits. Review to come.

richtate's review against another edition

Go to review page

5.0

Shelf this novel next to the works of Stephen King, Robert McCammon, and George Orwell. One of the best dystopian stories ever written.

sydbap's review against another edition

Go to review page

adventurous dark emotional sad tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

5.0


Expand filter menu Content Warnings

thewrightsage's review against another edition

Go to review page

5.0

This book was phenomenal and absolutely crazy. Loved every second of it.

drsdon's review against another edition

Go to review page

5.0

This an intense whirlwind of a book. The book is a combination of a dystopian / apocalyptic story, that combines a worldwide pandemic along with a machine intelligence, and then throw in some political allegory for a modern world, dealing with white supremacy, religious zealotry, and modern media. This book is loaded.

Because of the nature of the story being told, the book is also particularly violent. Typically, I don't find such violence useful in a story - often, it feels gratuitous - but in this book its deployed in such a way to add to the overall intensity character emotions, and it works.

The dystopian nature of the story is memorable, but the political allegory that permeates the novel - and the various commentary about modern society and politics - is something that will stay with a reader. Truly, there are parts of this book that are profound when considering its story in light of our contemporary world. And like so many great dystopian stories, the ethical questions posed are true quandaries, making one uncomfortable wrestling with concepts of private and public morality.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book; its story was captivating and entertaining, and its underlying allegory is challenging.

rachelirvin's review against another edition

Go to review page

adventurous challenging dark emotional mysterious reflective sad tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? N/A
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.75

siobhan_oak's review against another edition

Go to review page

adventurous challenging dark emotional funny hopeful mysterious tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

5.0

heddahboots's review against another edition

Go to review page

4.0

After reading the Imaginary Friend, I was terrified that this was going to be another overdone allegory about the battle between good an evil. Minor spoiler: it was not. It was so much more. I read this before covid became big news, and I don't know that I could read it now. The story is a little too close for comfort. If you enjoyed The Girl With All the Gifts or The Stand, you'll enjoy this one.

__apf__'s review against another edition

Go to review page

1.0

(Please don’t read this book. My review will save you several long hours of your life.)

“Wanderers” tells the story of a disease that threatens to wipe out all of humankind. It shows society’s reaction: chaos, breakdown, and a bid for survival in the face of human frailty. It’s set in a thinly veiled version of 2019 America, with political tension, racism, technology, and climate change as major themes. At times, the book feels like an unimaginative anti-Republican lecture. The mysteries within the book kept me going to the finish — 800 pages! — but the end brought relief, as if I’d completed a chore.

Why read this book:
— You are in the future, and you want to understand what Americans were afraid of in 2019. This book offers a comprehensive illustration of those fears.
— The series of mysteries are intriguing enough that I didn’t stop reading. I wanted to know how it ended.

Why not read this book:
— The core story did not need 800 pages. All suspense wears off by the time you get to the action and twists at the end. “Wanderers” would have been better with some ruthless editing.
— The “bad” people are caricatures of rural Republicans. They’re racist, gun-obsessed bullies and rapists. They’re gauche. The most powerful among them control the rest of the population with biased news. The author really lays it on thick. I may be a true blue California Democrat, but I have no patience for an 800-page anti-Republican screed. It’s boring, unimaginative, and I’d much rather read a book with complex and semi-sympathetic villains.
— One of the major romances in the book is...terribly written. Out of nowhere, suddenly two major characters are screwing and saying “I love you.” The romance fills two plot holes, but the author doesn’t do much to convince the reader of the romance.
— The book heavily features an “Artificial Intelligence” with godlike characteristics, accompanied by a programmer who doesn’t seem to know anything about programming. I could forgive this if the book introduced a new angle on powerful technology, but “Wanderers” doesn’t have anything new to say about machines as gods.

n.b. “Afterwar” and “Wanderers” share much in common: an American civil war in the near future, reflecting Trump-era anxiety. Between the two, “Afterwar” is a MUCH better book.

gloriaberry's review against another edition

Go to review page

4.0

Woof! This probably wasn’t the smartest book to read in the middle of a real mass pandemic