Friday, 5 September 2014

Review: The Master of the World

The Master of the World
The Master of the World by Jules Verne

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A disappointing lack of protagonism lets this one down.

The main character and narrator is a police inspector who's trying to find and foil the supervillain after whom the book is named. He tries several things and fails conspicuously. Nothing wrong with a try-fail cycle, but he then acts as what I call a "camera character," a mobile point-of-view that observes events without really affecting them. He's finally saved by one of several deus ex machina moments, brought on by the villain's pride in what is very close to a Disney villain fall.

The eponymous supervillain doesn't monologue; in fact, he hardly says anything, leaving his motives and his thought process largely unexplained.

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