Saturday, January 26, 2013

Gun Machine

      So the rundown is as follows: They don't make books like this any more. Or they don't often. But once in a blue moon a really good procedural, one with the proper amount of grit and some intelligence, finds its way to shelves. And it's amazing. The hero is flawed, the characters are colorful, every line is interesting and unfolds the mystery properly, and the dialogue is fantastic. This is definitely one of the books I recommend picking up, even if you don't really dig police procedurals. Warren Ellis has long been a writer to watch, and this, while not his magnum opus, is definitely a book high up in the canon. More, as always, after the jump.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Bloodsucking Fiends: A Love Story

          The rundown is as follows: This is the vampire novel that makes me not hate vampire novels. In a world populated with melancholy pale people bemoaning immortality and sometimes reveling in treating humans like cattle, this book at least turns the tropes on their ear and does them well. It's sweet, sad, a little cute, and manages both some horror and romantic comedy in a lovely style. The worst weakness the book has are that its male protagonist is a bit of a wimp, and that it is followed by two sequels that are regrettably canon. But of Christopher Moore's books, this is the one I believe should be the high-water mark, and the fact that I've read it five times without getting bored of it once means that no matter what, it has a place in my permanent collection, and should at least be attempted by you guys. Unless, you know, you hate fun* or aren't big on romantic comedies or something.

*If you hate fun, why do you even read these reviews?

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Chasing Dragons

           So the rundown is as follows: There is a good book here, but it's in desperate need of an editor to bring it out of its shell. While the characters are colorful, they tend to be dependent on the two somewhat-weaker protagonists, and overall the feeling is that Douglas Jaffe tells us more than shows us about these people. Ultimately, the book gets caught up in its own setting and mythology, and while that would be a strength for a nonfiction book, it only detracts from the story here. Chasing Dragons does come together into a very good ending, but by that point, the journey causes it to lose its impact. The book is not poorly-written, it could just benefit from a stronger editorial control, and perhaps a rewrite of the initial few chapters. While I cannot recommend Chasing Dragons to all but the most persistent, I am impressed with Mr. Jaffe as an author and hope to see more from him.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Health Issues

So I decided to turn over a new leaf and start out the New Year sick. I can't quite get my brain into writing mode while trying to figure out why my body hates me, so I'm gonna be putting this on hold while I recover. I know, sadly I'm no Peter Watts (Link not safe for work or mealtimes), but I promise that when I'm up, you guys are my first priority.

See you when I'm well!