It's official, I have Flamel fatigue. "The Necromancer" proved to be the toughest slog of the series thus far. The overall narrative switches back and forth between a seemingly infinite number of story lines. One moment, you're in Sherwood forest with Palamedes, Shakespeare and Saint Germain. Next, you're plummeting through a leygate with Dee and Dare; or in a boat with a crying Machiavelli and an annoying Billy the Kid; or in a 1960s bowling alley-like pad with Prometheus, the twins, the Flamels, and a crystal skull; or in the Land of the Lost with Scatty and Joan; or, or, or... At times, you can go 50 to 100 pages without encountering one of the story lines. Too much!
Interestingly, the largest number of story lines occurs in one of the shorter books of the series. "The Necromancer" is about 100 pages shorter than "The Sorceress". Fewer pages, but more story lines? The book feels rushed and overfilled. Scrap some of the story lines and Scott could have told the same story better, and maybe as a trilogy.
One final negative comment. The Elders and Next Generations are a very incestuous bunch - all brother, sisters, aunts, uncles, mothers, fathers, etc. You need a family tree to make sure no V.C. Andrews-esque shenanigans are coming into play here. Could the genetic homogeneity explain the foolishness, and often viciousness, of our supposed "ancestors"? Good lord, the God of the Old Testament is less temperamental than this lot.
Despite these frustrations, I will keep reading the series. The adventure keeps the pages turning at least somewhat. And I've already invested the time and energy to get through the first four books. I might as well give "The Warlock" and "The Enchantress" (release slated for summer 2012) a go as well.