Lynch has gotten a lot of attention with his writing. Well-deserved, I would say. The few reviews I’ve seen think Red Seas is a superior book. Probably, imo. There were elements of this book that made it seem more like a patchwork of his main characters’ lives. It wasn’t quite as single-minded as the first book. Which isn’t to say I didn’t enjoy the pirate interlude in the middle of the narrative. I got to fifty pages before the end and I wondered when Locke and his friend were finally going to tie all their plans together–and was that Lynch going to leave a monster cliffhanger now that he got his contract. But things got settled mostly satisfactorily.
The fantasy/sf publishing industry certainly has its mind made up to publish serials, and while I prefer stand-alone books (and movies, for that matter) if the story and characters have hooked us, who’s to say we’re not going to read the rest of the tale.
Shows a darned lack of trust in the abilities of the sf readership universe and its authors, though.