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Let's not be surprised this is a modern Russian novel writing about modern Russia as a full-out UF with vampires, magicians, alternate dimensional side-realms, and a fight between the light and dark. Add the police-like drama and ramp up the focus of a morality of action versus the singularity of truth and the ambiguity of all the details will bring a hoard of devils home to us.
Sometimes slow, very often broken up into what could be a series of novellas, this first book is nevertheless pretty brilliant. Where do dark magicians get their power? Where do light magicians get theirs? Both diminish the source. It's quite delightful. But if I'm being very honest, this is more of a 4. Maybe my issue is in the translation. Maybe it's my greater enjoyment coming from similar series to have treated the topic. I do not know.
Even so, I did enjoy this very much. Especially the end. View all 20 comments. Oleksandr Zholud Jim wrote: "Thanks for that, Oleksandr, good to know someone understands the point I was trying to make. Of course, the escalation of Russian invasion since Feb 24th made it more of an issue, after all I'm in Ukraine, so it's personal.
Bradley wrote: "Hmmm how does a novel coming out in retroactively become bad after an invasion 24 for years later? How does that work, again? However, with living authors, who harm people today it is different. The massacre of civilians in Bucha hasn't been done by Putin, but by ordinary Russian soldiers, who grew up on Russian propaganda including later works by Lukyanenko, his activity in social networks and his gate guarding the prevented publications of SFF authors, who disagree with him , that made it easy for them to dehumanize Ukrainian civilians.
Bradley wrote: "Learning from our past does NOT equal cancelling it. Repression only hides it from the light. It is a bit like having Hitler's aquarelles o your walls - yes, they aren't bad not great either , and people often decorate their houses with average works of art Bradley So isn't the point to just come right out and say, "you should try so-and-so," instead?
I don't believe in corporate greed or propaganda but we can't So isn't the point to just come right out and say, "you should try so-and-so," instead? I don't believe in corporate greed or propaganda but we can't stop them just by not reading the bad players in the game. That's a much bigger issue and it boils down to those who are pushing such an endgame, not the people swimming on the surface of that deep lake.
And maybe if I had been aware of his politics back in '18 when I read this book, I would have not given it much importance back then. Even now, this is the first time I'm hearing of any kind of controversy. When I read the book I was simply looking for good writers with good stories. Indeed, that's still my main concern when I'm reviewing books on a book site designed to elevate good books.
The real world is the real world, however, and it doesn't mean I'm not horrified by what is going on. I am quite horrified. But I also know the difference between some authoritarian asshat getting props at an awards ceremony and assholes using chemical warfare, indiscriminate bombing, and mass roundups of innocents.
The two are not even close to the same level. I realised today that I had not written a review for this book, so time to remedy that. One of the groups I freezes runs the occasional Bossy Book Challenge where one gets paired with another volunteer, puts forward on an agreed theme, a few book suggestions to each other that the other hasn't read.
Et voila Bossy Book Challenge. Of the suggestions put forward by my partner, this was the one I chose, and a good suggestion and choice it was to. Set in "present day" Russia, this a novel about three I realised today that I had not written a review for this book, so time to remedy that.
Set in "present day" Russia, this a novel about three sets of people : those that are intrinsically guard and guard humans against evil: those that are intrinsically evil and will do all they can to corrupt humans and finally the normal everyday humans. The Others as all the non-humans are called, are long lived and possess various differing powers, and battle amongst themselves within various agreed rules and regulations. This book is intricate, and well written with some great characters and a good story line I understand it is both now a film, and also that there are a number of sequels.
I would certainly read sequel, as I enjoyed the book, however the one reason to me this is not 5 stars, is the fact that it is 3 novellas, not really one novel. All good stories but not really a novel. Why was is that our truth proved powerless, but lies were effective? And why was the Darkness able to manage perfectly well with truth in order to do Evil?
I liked it and disliked it. Both, equally. I loved it because the idea is unique and there is a lot of thinking about consequences, life in general and lot more. But i felt that the story was poorly executed. Anyway, the book is separated in three stories. First one is about Svetlana and boy Egor. Either good or evil. Third is about Night Watch's party time and some thinking and such, with some kind of resolution in the end.
I guess my favorite stays the second one. And I still don't accept it now, despite all the times I've seen it proved right. But some truths are probably worse than lies. Next one starts almost immediately, and you have to wait a lot until you find out what happened to other characters from the previous story.
I found that quite irritating. And there were a lot of stuff going on. I just don't know. And it really bothered the hell out of me. It was just poorly executed while it could have been good. I also found the writing Except for Anton, i thought all of the characters were seriously underdeveloped. Except maybe Olga, but still. Svetlana is especially underdeveloped.
And she is supposed to be one of the main characters. I liked them, especially the second one, it was amazing if it hadn't ended suddenly like other three. Even though it's about good side and bad side and so on, i just found it different. I loved him, i enjoyed reading the book only because of him. Anyway, he is also a magician, Night Watch and crazy as hell. I loved how he questioned everything eventually, his struggles and decisions. He is really analytical, he analyses everything before doing something that he would regret.
I felt like she was there only to be love interest, and i have no idea how the hell it happened. It didn't feel real. She just felt two dimensional and that's a big let down. She was also not interesting in any way at all. To bad that she was not meant to be Anton's lover or something, because i think they would have been perfect for each other. She is just so interesting. He is sympathetic type of character and i just liked him a lot.
Some were interesting, some were not, but i definitely liked the characters from the Day watch. I liked it but i didn't. My final decision is to not continue this series, because i just lost interest in it. This review can be found on my blog: infinity-of-time. View all 36 comments. For the past month or so I have been regrettably absent from the nets that I like to call my digital home.
Real life demands have left me with precious little time to call my own and, more frightening still, the books that have found their way into my hands have not been inspiring me to take to the webs and shout my opinions into the ether with my usual gusto. Yes, I was in the grip of a mid-winter malaise second to none where everything I read, saw, or listened to just seemed either like it was For the past month or so I have been regrettably absent from the nets that I like to call my digital home.
Finally, a book that was everything I wanted to read at that moment: entertaining but thought-provoking, engaging while still making me pause to appreciate a particularly good passage. I knew I had been saving this series for a rainy day for a reason. On face this is a standard tale of good vs. The keepers of this truce are the titular Night Watch, agents of the Light who watch over the night to make sure that the balance of power is maintained, and the Day Watch, agents of the Dark who oversee the sunlit hours.
Anton Gorodetsky is a mid-grade Light Magician working as an analyst with the Night Watch, new to field work, who quickly becomes an important pawn in the latest scheme by the Day Watch to tilt the balance of power in their favor. A familiar scenario but for the uniquely Russian ability to interject large amounts of ethical ambiguity and age old moral dilemmas see: Kant- Utilitarianism into a novel without it seeming heavy-handed or needlessly digressive.
As long as the amount of good created by an action outweighs the possible harm, the Night Watch is able to act with a free hand. With as vague a definition as this, it is no wonder that the Light has been inadvertently responsible for some of the worst atrocities of the 20th Century and Anton comes to realize that the Day Watch does just as much to hold back the ambitions of the Light as his cadre stops the Dark.
Realizing that he is a bit player in a far larger show than he first thought, Anton tries as best he can to break out of the predictable paths that his superiors are relying on him to follow, which leads to a fair amount of madness in the streets of post-Soviet Moscow.
In Night Watch , Lukyanenko has crafted that rarest of gems- a story that manages to both thrill and excite with non-stop action and grand descriptions of magical powers while also forcing the reader to wonder what they would do in that situation. If one had the ability to become an Other, would you return from the Twilight as an agent of the Light or an agent of the Dark?
Could you license vampires to feed upon the innocent even if it helps preserve a precarious peace? Apr 05, Emma rated it liked it Shelves: urban-fantasy , fantasy , vampires , magic. This had some interesting ideas and story lines but the delivery was clunky because of the translation.
In some ways it was like the Russian version of Rivers of London, but not as funny or readable. This was a reread and I first read it many years ago so when I first rated it from memory, I gave it 5. But there werent so many excellent books in the genre back then or at least not that I knew of. Glad I refreshed my memory, but sadly not as good as I remembered.
View 1 comment. Night Watch is the first book in a six-book series. I would consider this to be urban fantasy. Since both sides seem primarily concerned with maintaining a balance, the lines between them are a little blurry. Rules are in place to keep conflict between the two Night Watch is the first book in a six-book series. Rules are in place to keep conflict between the two sides from escalating into a war.
If somebody strikes a blow for the Light, then the other side has the right to strike an equal blow for the Dark. The structure is a little different; it consists of three individual stories. Each one tells a complete story, but follows the same main character and builds on the previous stories. I read an English translation, of course.
It seemed like characters took the long way around to work toward their goals, and the main character was often ineffective. He was a likeable character though, a bit bumbling and confused, but well-meaning. I think my biggest complaint about the book would be the constant and repetitive musings on morality as it related to the actions of the Light versus the Dark. In the first story when I was still learning about the setting, it was interesting to learn about the choices that the sides had made, why they had made them, and consider whether their choices were ultimately more or less harmful than alternate choices.
But then in the second story the characters continued to muse over more-or-less the same things, and it started to get tiresome. Aside from those complaints, it was a quick read that held my attention well. I enjoyed the concepts introduced and I liked the stories and the characters. This book is my biggest let down of so far.
The basic plot focuses on Anton Gorodetsky, a member of the Night Watch, as he essentially navigates life contemplating the differences between Light Others and Dark Others, how he fits into the overall system, and how his choices ultimately define him. The entire novel focuses on the Night Watch of which Anton is a member and the Day Watch, two opposing supernatural organisations who keep each other in check.
Speaking of the characters, excluding Anton, the majority of them are ridiculously underdeveloped. Soya milk has more of a personality than this woman. I'm talkin' a ton of filler, a ton of characters what the fuck was up with the old man and the melon? I spent most of the time forgetting huge chunks of the story and just shrugging it off. Who knew. Obviously everyone gleans enjoyment from different things, and this may end up being your cup of tea, but for me it was a huge miss. Apr 05, Jaidee rated it liked it Shelves: three-stars-books.
All three novellas in this book were 3 stars I will try the second in the series at some point! Nov 29, Kaya rated it it was amazing Shelves: 5-stars. I adore Anton, I adore the humor and ambiguous messages. It's far from perfect, but enjoy "The Dark freedom is, first of all, the freedom from yourself, your consciousness and soul. It's far from perfect, but enjoyable enough. This is a story about a man trying to accept that the Light can have catastrophic consequences just as the Dark does.
Magicians, shape-shifters, vampires, werewolves and who knows what else are trying to maintain a truce between the forces of Light and Darkness. As Anton digs deeper into the secrets of the Night Watch, he is forced to make difficult decisions, over and over again. Also, as long as the portion of Good outweighs the possible harm, the Night Watch is able to act with a free hand. The Light has been responsible for some of the horrors of the 20th Century and Anton realizes the Day Watch does just as much to hold back from destroying the world.
The war is fought by Others. They have magical powers and all their emotions are heightened. The world exists on many levels -the one we see as humans, then there is Twilight which is only approachable to Others and is called upon by stepping through ones shadow.
The Twilight also has many levels, each demanding more energy to enter than the previous one. Magicians choose the Light or the Dark - their choice is based on the state of their mind. The first enter into Twilight defines ones destiny. The consequence of doing good magic is allowing the other side to do an equal amount of evil magic and vice versa. And we don't have the right to do that. The author developed struggles and resistance of our protagonist so beautifully it's almost impossible not to relate to Anton.
In the first part of the book, Others must save Egor, a young boy, future Other, from a female vampire, who illegally tried to kill him. Anton formed a certain kind of bond with the boy, so he might be a key in saving him. At the same time, an enormous dark vortex has been opened over the head of Svetlana, young woman, who happens to be a latent magician.
Anton is connected to her, in some way, which means he's the only one who can save her. Basically, Anton is average magician and he'll never be extremely powerful, but with his charisma, he manages to be in the center of everything important. The second part of the book, Anton searches for Maxim, another latent Other, who doesn't even realize what he really is and who has been killing off Dark Others for around three years.
Anton must find him before the Day Watch arests him for the crimes they try to frame him. The third part is a bit anticlimactic. There is a lot of partying, alcohol and drunken conversations. It doesn't really feel like an ending of the first book in the series, but at list we get to know Anton even better. So, the biggest part of the novel is the arguable moral value, philosophy of right and wrong, and acceptance that nothing really is black and white.
This book is at the same time amusing and thought-provoking, consuminh and witty. Our protagonist questions morals and purpose of authority figures. There are epic quotes, sufficient protagonist who's at the same time humble and cocky, sneeky plot, intelligent humour and secondary character that wait for their moment to shine, like Semyon. It looks like Anton is destined to change the course of those close to him. With his doubts, fears and contradicted emotions, he is such a strong protagonist that you don't even feel the need to become familiar with other characters.
He's intelligent, articulate, resourceful and thoughtful. Anton is an underachiever,reluctant to go into field work because he knows he's not good at it. While questioning everything, including the intentions of the Night Watch, he still manages to be fully on the side of Light. There is a family of Vampires, Dark Others, living in his building that he is friends with. They are Dark, but they don't feed on humans and Anton respects them. They seem odly disciplined, with even less schemes than the Night Watch.
Secretly, I even want Anton to change side. His scenes with Egor were pretty powerful too. View all 6 comments. Mar 12, Sumant rated it liked it Shelves: fantasy , watch. I was really close on giving up this book after I was almost seventy five percent done with the book, but I kept going after thinking that I had come near to the end and the final conclusion will be satisfactory to my persistence, but unfortunately it left me wanting for more.
The genre of book is Urban fantasy , but author manages to put in lot of grey moments in the book, where in you are confused regarding classifying the good guys as good, it's not your typical Harry Dresden type urban fantasy I was really close on giving up this book after I was almost seventy five percent done with the book, but I kept going after thinking that I had come near to the end and the final conclusion will be satisfactory to my persistence, but unfortunately it left me wanting for more.
The genre of book is Urban fantasy , but author manages to put in lot of grey moments in the book, where in you are confused regarding classifying the good guys as good, it's not your typical Harry Dresden type urban fantasy not taking anything away from Dresden files. Some of the strong points of the book are 1. Different urban setting. Grey characters. Short story format. Some of the weak points are 1. Story seems to be going no where.
Hazy magic system. Let me elaborate on the above points now 1. The book takes place in Moscow where they have classified all the persons excepts humans are to be classified as Others. So it is perfectly normal for you to be a werewolf or a witch or for that matter an vampire provided you are not hurting anyone. It's the responsibility of Watches to maintain this watch and keep a tab on others present in their areas.
But it's the responsibility of Night Watch to maintain the balance for good, and of the Day Watch to maintain the balance for bad acts. Also these watches are at equilibrium with respect to one another. All this takes place in Moscow which gives completely different color altogether.
The rumble of the engine, the gusts of air coming in through the half-open windows, the jolting over the rails. The numb wait for your own station. At last the whole world is divided up into black and white!
So get this. This is the biggest plus point of the book, you just can't pinpoint that if a guy belongs to Night watch he is just going to do good deeds, but some of the guys from Night watch take such actions that you question their motives. We get an continuous story in the book where we have same characters involved, but the author splits the story into three different situations, this keeps things fresh.
Regarding the weak points of the book 1. Ok we know that Night watch is not always doing things it is suppose to be doing which is protecting humans. But what about humans? Tirelessly, self-sacrificingly. They do the work of the Dark themselves. The faith Light Magicians used to have when they sent entire armies to their deaths, and marched in the front ranks themselves? The ability not just to defend people, but to bring them joy?
Yes, Anton, we are soldiers. But you can repeat this philosophy once or maximum twice in the book, you just can't keep hammering the reader with this continuous dilemma which our night watch guys face, because its gets tiring after some time reading the same thing again and again. Also the story is mostly told from the pov of night watch agent Anton , the author does not give us any background information regarding him, and this guy just keeps thinking in his mind and his self pitying and self dialogues just become too much after point.
As a reader I was not able to connect at all with this character. This is especially true in the last story because the author spends most of the time debating whether night watch or good guys or bad, and due to that the circumstances which are happening in the story tend to get shadowed. Also everything gets wrapped up in last pages which just left bad taste in my mind.
The author does not go into detail regarding the magic system in this world, he just introduces to use some magical environments like twilight. Twilight gives us more strength than humans can ever have, it gives us a life that is almost immortal in human terms.
And it also takes it all away when the time comes. In one sense we all live on borrowed time. Not just the vampires and werewolves who have to kill in order to prolong their strange existence. And it is left mostly to the reader to make sense out of it. View 2 comments. This was a pleasant surprise and I definitely enjoyed it! I'm happy that my Patron Nick voted for this one as the Patreon read because I'm not sure when I would have gotten to it otherwise.
It was refreshing to read a fantasy story set in Russia as I'm totally unfamiliar with it or Russian traditions but it's my understanding that it's pretty accurate at depicting the area and time. Anton was a compelling character to follow and the way the book is split up into 3 separate "books" kept things in This was a pleasant surprise and I definitely enjoyed it!
Anton was a compelling character to follow and the way the book is split up into 3 separate "books" kept things interesting. I think the second story overall in the middle book was the best. The Night Watch balances a story of Light and Dark wonderfully and there is quite a bit of moral ambiguity that is focused on. The Dark and the Light factions of the Others are at odds throughout the book with plenty of scheming going on.
Overall I'm happy I read this and I would certainly be interested in continuing at some point. Jun 01, Katy rated it it was amazing. Please note : I've read this book twice, the latest time being December Translation : I had my husband read this first, after he read the Russian version, so he could tell me how good the translation was he was born in Russia.
He tells me the translation from Russian is very good, as good as could be expected considering there are so many Russian words and phrases that simply cannot be translated into English with the same amount of impact. Apparently the Russian version of this book has a Please note : I've read this book twice, the latest time being December Apparently the Russian version of this book has a great deal of humor in it - what I primarily perceived was a fairly melancholic air.
My Synopsis : This book - all three parts of it - focus on Anton, a 5-year veteran of the Nightwatch. The Nightwatch is a group of Light Others - magicians, shapeshifters, etc. Anton is having what could be most closely defined as a crisis of faith; he feels that maybe the ends do not justify the means and that the Nightwatch is not acting in the best interests of humankind after all. However, he does not want to switch allegiances - in fact, as far as he knows no one can - and he cannot act directly against the Nightwatch or he will be sent into the Twilight forever.
Act 1 : The first part of the book is the part that most closely resembles the movie that was created from these novels - they must again save Egor, a young boy, from a female vampire, after Anton has already saved him once and killed her paramour, who illegally turned her after falling in love with her when he was licensed to take her I presume the "legal" result of this transaction would be the death of the girl, but it is never baldly stated this way.
At the same time, a large dark vortex has opened over the city and they must find first the person over whom it has risen and secondly the Magician or Sorceress who has set it. Act 2 : The second part of the book finds Anton in a great deal of danger when he is sent after a Maverick Other, who does not even realize that he is an Other, who has been killing off Dark Others for around three years. He must find the Maverick and bring him in before the Daywatch catches up to him or the Maverick - but the Daywatch is certain is it Anton himself who is committing the murders.
Act 3 : Finally in the 3rd section of the book, we find Moscow under an unusual heat wave and the Nightwatch has been cut down to a skeleton crew, with the rest being sent off on vacation. Anton fears that Svetlana - who, he is told, is destined to be a Great One - is being pushed too far, too fast and that, as a result, the fragile love that has grown between them will be snapped. As a result, he pushes her even farther away and finally ends up making a deal with the Dark Ones; however, he redeems himself in the denouement, before announcing to Gesar and Svetlana that he has realized this whole situation has been a feint and distraction to keep the Dark Ones from knowing what is actually going on of course, we ourselves have very little idea ourselves, as Anton doesn't deign to actually state out loud much about the actions going on.
Comparisons and Recommendations : Maybe more perceptive readers than I will figure out what is going on in the background, but a lot of this feels like a book by L E Modesitt, Jr. Don't miss this one - it's a terrific book. View all 3 comments.
I enjoyed this book the first time I read it, but since then I have learned a lot more about Lukyanenko's political views, and a lot of things in this book suddenly felt a lot more uncomfortable. An example is the fact that Lukyanenko constantly refers to Ukrainians as "farmers" and otherwise disreputable.
The book is also a lot more casually misogynistic and homophobic than I remembered. That's absolutely disgusting and hateful. I guess I should also say that the English translation was not very good. Lukyanenko is by no means the next Dostoyevsky, but he's not a bad writer in Russian side note, I find it funny that he sided with Russia against Ukraine considering that he himself is Kazakh, albeit living in Russia Maybe the simple charm of insulting an entire country's population just doesn't translate well.
What do I know, right? Sep 03, Penny rated it really liked it Shelves: fantasy , scifi-and-fantasy-club-bookshelf , series , bookclub , urban-fantasy. I thought there are a lot of interesting and unusual aspects to this book. In particular, the tripartite structure I got that term from the book club discussion , the magic system, and the depth of discussion on the nature of good vs evil and how to go about keeping a balance between the two.
I liked the tripartite structure of the book. It sort of spilt the story into three sub-stories although the time line was consistent as were the main characters. However each sub-story had its own focus an I thought there are a lot of interesting and unusual aspects to this book. However each sub-story had its own focus and resolution within the greater arc of the entire book. It made for very good reading in my opinion. The world building and magic system are simply fantastic.
Lukyanenko managed to take a very simple old idea of good and evil and present it in a way that completely held my attention. The world exists on many levels, the one we as humans can see, then just below that there is the Twilight which is only accessible to those with magic and is called upon by magicians by stepping through ones shadow. The Twilight has many levels, each requiring more energy to enter than the last.
Magicians are born, not made, and they choose either the Light or the Dark. The consequence of doing good magic is allowing the other side to do an equal amount of bad magic and vice versa, a result of the Treaty. This brings up the questions of how much good is achieved in a good deed that can't be outweighed by a bad one? How much evil can you undo by reforming a bad man? It is equal to the cost? These questions and more are addressed in a beautifully complex and well thought out manner.
I'll definitely be continuing with the series. Jun 01, Graeme Rodaughan rated it it was amazing Shelves: the-best , urban-fantasy , vampires , fantasy. Light and Dark! Anton Gorodetsky, a light other, is a newbie field operative for the Night Watch as all hell threatens to break loose in Moscow.
This is exotic Urban Fantasy unlike anything I have read before. Sergei Lukyanenko has built a wonderfully detailed and consistent world where secret powers war against each other while bound by a mutually enforced treaty. The world building is elegantly presented via character conversations that are well contexted to the narrative. There are distinct ph Light and Dark! There are distinct philosophical themes to this story as the main characters debate how do good in a morally ambiguous world.
This is a philosophically rich work, but don't assume that is all there is, there is suspense, courage, danger, mystery, betrayal, duty, fanaticism, and above all, love which motivates so much at great cost. This is the first book, an omnibus of three inter-related novella sized novels, of an ongoing series. I have no hesitation in recommending this book to anyone with a love for paranormal, and suspense orientated urban fantasy.
What a great writer Sergei Lukyanenko is. Many reviewers seem to think he is a Russian-Tolkien. I can't really see that, given that The Night Watch is set in Moscow, with no real invention with languages or places. What the author does well is keep a concise story flowing throughout "Ever danced with the devil in the middle of the night?
What the author does well is keep a concise story flowing throughout, even though the novel is essentially three novellas. He blends several genres into his own mould if you will. All the stories interlink flawlessly, where the main protagonist is Anton - a 'Other' and a drunk, not the best hero, more a anti-hero if you will. He fights for the 'Light' side. What a goodyliltwoshoes! The moralistic make-up of many could be viewed as black and white, socially this is a standard archetypal construct.
Some actions are viewed as good, other's bad. Who decides what is good and bad? In this case, 'The Inquisitors' who up hold the Treaty which has been in effect for thousands of years. There's always a fine line between good and evil, sometimes you have to skirt both, or jump in the middle of the two, whereupon you take action from somewhere in-between the two. This is essentially what The Night Watch do. They are of the light, they believe in all those good things you might associate with such a acronym.
Now the Dark Watch are the opposing faction, they are not so nice; demons, forked tongues, vampires, werewolves, witches and the feeding of energy from human, whom they view as cartel. Nothing wrong with that from their perspective, something wrong about it from the light side stance. Both of these factions are known as 'Others', not quite human, but something else altogether.
Well let's be honest, nothing different many other fantasy novelist haven't written in the past. To keep balance between the two factions is the Treaty, which essentially says 'for every action there is a re-action. Why would they wish to do that? They feed off human's misery. Where the Light feeds off people happiness. We're being leeched!!! No wonder I wake up some mornings feeling like a car wreck! I believe what the author is attempting to show abide more subtly than I is for every action, there is a re-action, which brings a balance to the natural order of 'things'.
Good and evil is one facet, the concept has been around for generations. There is a belief that everyone has a angel and demon looking over them, influencing them to do things and take action. Really, what is happening is you are in control, you cause say a affect due to your action, then attribute that to being 'influenced' by your angel or demon.
This is essentially a major posit of The Night Watch , good things happen because those people make it happen, and so on. Scary stuff huh. How is Svetlana cursed? Well 'obviously' if you're a 'Other' you can see the auras that float above human's heads - the one above Svetlana isn't a good one. Sergei's writing style could be described as minimalist - there is no flowery prose here, it never get's over descriptive.
I mean how descriptive can one be when describing the suburbs of Moscow - which really sets the tone for a depressing gritty backdrop - one that could be described as taking that first shot of vodka, harsh but warming - now the warming part comes from the romantic content, which you may enjoy, I did as it lead to some tough moral choices for some of the characters. As for the dialogue, well mostly it's really simple, however I really had difficulty with the formal nature of some of the characters.
For example Anton, always called his boss by his full name, every time - "Yes Boris Ignavatich" - on one occasion he said his name six times. Are Russians really that formal? Myself, I can be, but really would be awkward after the first time haha. Other than that, we get a good look at some of the 'Light' characters; Tiger Cub a shape-shifter , Seymon a magician , Ilya a magician and a few other's. I particularly found Seymon appealing. The sort of 'old sage' with fountains of information, who's been there and done it.
The Night Watch is a really thought out novel, with elements taken from supernatural, fantasy and horror genres. This isn't Harry Potter or Buffy The Vampire Slayer - in fact I'd go as far to suggest this series is fairly unique given it's Soviet-style urban decay and cross-genre jumping. It's not just about good versus evil, it's about moral choices that skirt between the two or some time's goes beyond one's moralistic beliefs.
Are the 'Light' side blind to the evil they do towards humans? Will Anton make choices that are for the betterment of mankind, or will he be lead marionette-style to do another's bidding - even if it's on a sub-conscious level.
Read on reader, but be warned, this is adult content and not YA. View all 4 comments. Oh man I had so many expectations for this book and it bitterly disappointed. Firstly, ignore that tagline on the cover that says it's like Russian JK Rowling. Clearly the Daily Telegraph was drinking some bribery cognac when they wrote that. The only thing the two have in common is a little bit of magic, but honestly this book is pretty stingy with it.
Like, maybe imagine JK fell into this really dark depression, drank too much vodka and lost her creativity streak. It's not like I hated the story. You've got this young guy, Anton, who works for the Night Watch. These are the good guys Light Others who stop the bad guys Dark Others from getting out of control. There's also a Day Watch full of bad guys who stop the good guys being too good.
Dark others include vampires, werewolves, witches, ghouls I can't actually say for sure, because this book has like three vampires and a couple of shapeshifters and nothing else. So here's the first disappointment: scope. Instead of throwing in all these amazingly horrible monsters, this book focuses narrowly on a handful of NW characters who are pretty ordinary, and a single plot involving two other pretty ordinary characters. I think he's supposed to be young?
But to me he reads like a fussy old middle-aged man. But he still whines and protests a lot so finds himself doing things outside the norm. He had some interesting adventures, but as mentioned, the scope just wasn't there. It's basically pages of Anton wandering around not knowing what to do.
So here's my second problem: I think there may have been a serious 'lost in translation' issue. The story is so vague and random and relies heavily on the reader putting things together which, quite honestly, I struggled to put together. Maybe I'm not the sharpest tool in the shed, but it just seemed messy to me, and I think never understood well enough what it was actually saying to figure out what it wasn't.
I'd like to give the benefit of the doubt and put it down to a bad translation, because otherwise that's just rubbish, arrogant writing. The story is divided into three parts - interlocking short stories that focus on Anton, a mysteriously powerful woman and an average kid who is destined for I dunno, I never really worked out what his deal was, to be honest.
The prologue of each sets the scene and then we go frolicking along as Anton tries to figure out what his boss is up to and what he's supposed to do about it. Honestly, the only person thicker than me-trying-to-read-this-book is bloody Anton.
If he'd been a bit sharper I'm sure this book would have been easier to read. As it was, I lost track of what was happening so many times. The Russian names don't really help, because they're hard to remember. I wanted horrific monsters, gore, blood, guts, suspense, tension, goosebumps, fear of sleeping I got yawns and a headache. The magic was actually pretty cool when they used it. The Twilight was a bit hard to understand at first but it was quite unique, so I appreciated that element.
There's some okay world-building, but the book seems to focus more on the morals of the world than how it actually functions. It also comments a lot on humankind, and by the end of the book I was kinda over being judged by this cynical Russian author who doesn't know me at all.
Like, he complains so much about humans being horrible and causing their own evil, and I totally agree that the world is a bit of a mess right now, but like Samwise said, 'there's some GOOD in this world Mr Frodo , and it's worth fighting for. That made me sad. I did really like the bit towards the end non-spoiler where happiness was likened to flowers. That was nice. Even if it did drag on a bit. So, look. I didn't hate it - there's three interesting stories here.
But I think you probably need to read slow to make sure you're following what's going on, and be prepared to fill in a lot of blanks yourself. Don't expect too much in the way of action, or thrills, or monsters, and be prepared for lots of commentary on the human condition. This may go down better with a glass of vodka. Shelves: fantastical , translation , black-as-night.
I was really enjoying this book until about the midway point and then instead of Lukyanenko pushing the story on to a fantastic ending which would have had me drooling for the following instalments he simply repeated the same trick from the first part of the book twice more and helped me to lose interest entirely. At the heart of the book is a fantastic premise; police departments set up by Light Magicians and Dark Magicians to monitor the behaviour of Good and Evil his pronouns not mine , fight I was really enjoying this book until about the midway point and then instead of Lukyanenko pushing the story on to a fantastic ending which would have had me drooling for the following instalments he simply repeated the same trick from the first part of the book twice more and helped me to lose interest entirely.
At the heart of the book is a fantastic premise; police departments set up by Light Magicians and Dark Magicians to monitor the behaviour of Good and Evil his pronouns not mine , fighting a war that's destined to continue forever in stalemate. The quote on the front of this version of the book refers to it as "J. Rowling Russian style" and I actually came to see the similarities between Harry and Anton, both are pawns of superior magicians and both are at the centre of a war between light and dark but I think that is where these comparisons should end.
Unless of course I find that by the end of the trilogy Anton is killing the dark lord, at which point I might just exhale deeply and roll my eyes before feeling like I've wasted pages of my life. This book is comprised of three seperate stories of Anton and The Night Watch and neither of the three are particularly spectacular, I kept thinking back to the Ed McBain 87th Precinct police procedural novels which started so well with Cop Hater and became formulaic very quickly.
The relative brevity of each instalment was also matched by Lukyanenko here. That ended up as the only saving grace, allowing me to forge on to the end. Looking beyond the fantasy elements of this story, it was Post-Soviet Russian literature aspect to the storytelling that was most interesting for me. Discussing it briefly with Daniel after he recently read A Matter of Death and Life it occurred to me that the authors who grew up under Communism and faced with a rich literary history, that includes people like Fyodor Dostoyevsky and Anton Chekhov referenced by Lukyanenko in the third story, have a quite unique approach to contemporary world fiction.
This is no different for Lukyanenko's Night Watch, the same themes and outlook on the world are all there, if you look at even just the premise of Homo Zapiens you begin to understand just how greatly the world view of these authors differs to that of you or I and why countries again, as referenced by Lukyanenko in the third story from the Former Soviet states, Asia and the Middle East will be the future of the world economy and interesting literature. Aside from the less than exciting end to each of the three linked episodes in this book the major reason why I won't be moving on to the Day Watch is the constant moralising and discussion of what it takes to be a good person that is apparently a recurring theme in the authors work.
I don't want to be so overtly preached to in my fiction, I prefer it a little more subtle if it has to be there at all. At least it was miles better than Finch. Oct 02, fleurette rated it really liked it Shelves: fantasy. Many years ago I watched the movie based on the book in this series and I liked it so much that I decided to read the book. It was so long ago that I don't remember what was this movie about in fact. Maybe it's good, making me like the book even more. I was surprised with this story.
It is different than I expected. To my amazement, I liked things I usually don't like. The entire book is divided into three parts. Three separate stories that are closely related. The same characters, similar themes Many years ago I watched the movie based on the book in this series and I liked it so much that I decided to read the book.
The same characters, similar themes, the continuity of the story is maintained. And that's what I like so much. The whole story is very coherent, even though they are three stories, they definitely form one whole thing and have one goal. They are very similar but at the same time different enough not to be boring and repetitive. On the contrary, each one is a great story that you read with interest.
The narration is conducted in the first person from Anton's point of view. Although I usually don't like this type of narration, it doesn't bother me here. Anton is an intelligent and interesting man with a complex personality. Being in his head and watching the world through his eyes is a rather pleasant feeling.
It's easy to like him. And so is the case with the other characters. They are complicated, interesting and ambiguous. They give the whole story a deeper dimension, make me wonder what their motives are. I really like the ambiguity of their actions. Makes them more real. The whole world described in the book is amazing, unique and different from everything. The eternal struggle between Good and Evil has been told anew.
The best things are all shades of gray that are presented in this story. MIT License. This commit does not belong to any branch on this repository, and may belong to a fork outside of the repository. Branches Tags.
Could not load branches. Could not load tags. Latest commit. Added new Windows Github Actions and fixed failing tests Git stats 2, commits. Failed to load latest commit information. View code. Install Nightwatch from NPM 2. Clone the project 2. Run tests About Nightwatch Licence. Nightwatch v2. Install with: npm i nightwatch. About End-to-end testing framework written in Node. Code of conduct. Releases v2. Apr 20, Packages 0 No packages published. You signed in with another tab or window.
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