This is one book where i should not have ignored the other reviews here. The warning that this was self published didn't mean much to me at the time. The only other experience I've had reading self-published works are with S.E. Culpepper, and her books are amazing. So I did a mental shrug at the self-published warning and decided the premise was interesting so I'd give it a shot.
I was impressed at all of the comments about the lore and the world-building, but I couldn't suffer through the writing long enough to get there. Clunky, awkward, too much information without enough detail. I only made it to page 40/498 in ibooks, but in all of those 40 pages I wasn't once able to forget that I was reading and sink into the story.
Maybe someday if I have time to kill and nothing else to read I'll give this another shot. The lore and the setting do indeed sound fascinating.
UPDATE 8 July 2012
So, I've recently given some other poorly-edited books a second chance and started feeling guilty for not giving this book the same consideration. I finished it today, and I'm actually very glad I did.
Don't get me wrong, this is without question the most poorly edited piece of writing I've ever read (not just typos (like one of the men shifting "into his car form"... rawr, a human transformer! that is indeed impressive!), but glaring things like characters being called the wrong name in the narration, persistent misuse of things like your/you're, their/there, and its/it's, words being misused (like Cole's brother calling himself the "convoy" that the cougars had sent to witness the celebration) and a complete and total misunderstanding of the purpose and use of commas).
But since I was anticipating that this time, I was able to just roll my eyes at the worst of it and get back to the story.
And it really was worth it! The story turned out to be captivating. The world-building is indeed remarkable, and the lore was fascinating and thorough and described very well. Each new piece of lore was also revealed beautifully--it never felt like an info dump, and we were given just the amount we needed to know in order to understand something and then the story moved on until we were given another little piece of background or information. That was fantastically well done.
I also really liked Cole. I thought he was an excellently well-crafted character, and I could sympathize with him and his motivations. I also enjoyed and could sympathize with his reactions to the things that were happening to him.
I enjoyed Cole and his abilities and the lore and the world enough to want to find out if there really are more books in this series. Which, considering just how bad the editing was and how unforgiving I usually am with that, is really saying something.
The story here is good enough, and the characters and lore and setting fascinating enough that this had the potential to be a 4+ star read. If you can be patient with unprecedentedly bad editing, I absolutely recommend this.