This review will be heavy in the spoilers, you have been warned.
I had high hopes for this book, I really did, but it fell flat. The main Character Angela is wooden and unrealistic. Some may argue that that’s the point, she is wooden because she can’t feel anything unless she is torturing and killing other killers. But who can relate to that? It’s so far away from the way normal people feel and function we cannot make a connection to Angela.
The writing is poor, I expected more from Terry Goodkind. He takes every opportunity to remind the reader what Angela means in Italian, and forces down our throat at every corner how Angela’s power works. It’s as if he doesn’t trust his readers to be lead along by his story telling so he leaves large loafs of bread on the trail and not bread crumbs. The whole novel feels more like it random fight/rape/murder scenes that were written with a vague idea what the overall story might be, then stitched together in to this Frankenstein’s monster.
Character development ends in the first few chapters. Angela’s reaction to being raped and almost killed left little to no psychological scars. I would expect her to have some lasting effects from a quad or men raping and hanging her to die, but no she just wants revenge. Can she feel emotion or not? Come on Terry this is just muddling the character design. I feel everyone could understand the numbness of depression and the toll it takes on the psyche, but Terry Goodkind doesn’t even explore why she “can’t feel”. At every twist and turn he stomps all over the “can’t feel” bit and writes her with anger and a need for revenge even some empathy. I don’t know what was more annoying, the premise that she can’t feel emotions, or the fact that she is constantly out of character feeling emotions all over the place.
As a fan of Terry Goodkind, I was very disappointed.
(EDIT: Fixed some grammar issues and spelling. I was angry writing when I originally wrote this and it showed.)