I really, really, really, really loved this story! I took longer reading TJP than I normally would only because I was reading it on my laptop which I'...moreI really, really, really, really loved this story! I took longer reading TJP than I normally would only because I was reading it on my laptop which I'm unaccustomed to. Had I had this in print I'd have been done it in one day. I agree with my friend Jeannie, who also reviewed this, on a number of points but definitely about the news reports in the beginning. They seemed just a little too long to me but it's something I easily got past because of the story itself. I loved the main character, Alex and his family. I loved, loved, loved the drama with his work toward the beginning of the book. When he was dealing with his supervisor I actually felt nervous myself, like I was the one dealing with this sort of this. That doesn't happen all that often. When I have to keep myself from peeking ahead I know I have a good one on my hands. Alex's wife played a pretty small roll in the scheme of things but man I loved her too. She's freaking awesome. Like Jeannie said in her review, I can totally see the majority of people on this earth acting just as Alex's neighbors did. I can't think of a more realistic portrayal to any of them. If (I can't bring myself to say 'when'!) this ever happened we'd be dealing with people just like Konkoly created here. I think that's what's so darn scary. While I do love apocalyptic novels and others that could be/are considered horror, horror isn't a huge genre of mine so the fact that I loved this as much as I did really speaks volumes. The reason I wade through smaller known authors is because of this right here. Every so often you find one that is out of this world and Konkoly is it. I have no doubt that anything he writes will be worth reading and I look forward to reading his next book. This is a scary book but at the same time it really has other great things about it. How family oriented Alex is for instance. He's willing to let go of all else to make sure his family survives this and he's smart enough to do just that. If anyone is thinking of reading this and is on the fence because of the genre or because of assumptions about what it'll be like I urge you to just try it yourself. You'll probably be very surprised. I can see this being read far and wide, not just by readers of the genre.
**I just looked on amazon and the ebook is $3.99 and the first chapter can be read free. No excuse to miss it therefore. Four bucks is nothing to spend for this story, trust me. I may buy a print version to keep because I can see myself rereading this one day.**(less)
Fictional stories - no matter the kind - set overseas usually don't take up space on my 'favorites' list. When I first started reading Breakdown I was...moreFictional stories - no matter the kind - set overseas usually don't take up space on my 'favorites' list. When I first started reading Breakdown I was a little nervous because it was obviously set in the U.K. and the characters speech reflected this. One other thing that could have gone the opposite way for me was the details. Usually I go for writing that isn't very detailed. Some details are crucial of course but I've read authors before with what I call "flowery" writing. I wouldn't call Katherine Amt Hanna's writing 'flowery' or 'overly detailed' in any way but.... with another author I might have. Or, I should say, with another author's way of writing. I've always just attributed this pet peeve of mine to the author using too many descriptive words for my taste. But after reading this, I think it's more an issue of how and why said words are used. Breakdown isn't overly detailed at all - I loved the details. (I doubt I've ever said that before!) I wanted more, even though I have to admit it didn't need more. I told a friend this morning that I actually felt a bit of sadness when I came to the end of the book. That's not something that happens to me often. I usually dislike a lot of prequels, sequels, and series, because single books, with a clear ending, are more my taste. Normally, no matter how much I loved the story, I'm okay when it ends. And sure, I'm okay that this ended. But I can't deny that feeling of sadness and wanting to continue reading - especially about Chris and Pauline and Brian. Those three characters made the book for me personally. The relationship between the three was perfect. Or what I would imagine would be perfect for that type of setting. I still consider myself fairly new to the genre but I have read a decent amount and more often than not, one of the major things that end up bothering me is the relationships between characters. While no one can tell what would be "realistic" in some setting like this we can try to imagine how one would act. I've read books where, IMO, the authors have just totally missed the mark with this aspect. The characters in Breakdown are complete and maybe even awe inspiring. Believe it or not, IMO, 'complete' is the bigger compliment there. I'd recommend in a second to anyone who already likes the genre but I'd also recommend to anyone thinking about trying this type of book. Thinking back to when I first tried the genre myself, I think Breakdown could have easily hooked me. I'm eager to read another book by the author and if and when there's one available I'll be more than happy to buy it. (It's a good feeling in today's world when there are so many books - ebooks in particular - that are a waste of money (IMO) that I know I can buy a new book from an author I've only read once and I can be relatively sure I'll be happy with it.) (less)
I've been REALLY crappy about reviewing lately so I actually read this a week ago, give or take. Forgive me if I forget some details. I remember the g...moreI've been REALLY crappy about reviewing lately so I actually read this a week ago, give or take. Forgive me if I forget some details. I remember the gist of it all though. I'm surprised to see so many negative reviews. I'll admit that while reading this I expected it to be a first book or a new author but it's it's a good story. I'd urge people to keep in mind that readers usually have genres they love - and those they don't love so much. If I read a western, romance (in the strictest sense) or most any self-help it'd probably get a negative rating from me. Then there are genres that aren't really in my top three but that I can like and sometimes love. I don't really go for mysteries more often than not and that's what I label this. And I loved it. I'd be willing to bet that at least half, if not the majority, of the people who rated this poorly are people who like non-fiction, memoirs, etc. and they like very realistic fiction. That's me actually. But, at the same time I can open my mind and enjoy something that tugs at the limit. This tugs. You'd be hard-pressed to find anyone who could really relate to Locke's characters lifestyles. But it could happen, couldn't it? Besides, the story is there. And it's a good one. The story progresses and the characters are so fun to read about. I'll be the first to admit that Locke's writing is hardly eloquent. But who says that - and that alone - is the basis for great writing? Not I. Soon after finishing with this I noticed a friend of mine had another of Locke's Donovan Creed books called Wish List. Long story short, she let me borrow that book which I loved just as much. Just this morning I ordered the rest of the Donovan Creed books from amazon and I plan to read each and every one. He also has a few others not in the series that seem to be westerns. I'll be passing those by because westerns really aren't my thing at all but I'd bet - again - that they're just as good for readers of that genre.
**There are two instances from the book that follow but they aren't spoilers and don't affect the story.**
There were a few contradictions in Saving Rachel that caught my eye. The first was when Mary's car was at her house and the main character checked the trunk before entering her condo. After leaving the condo he decided to travel to Seneca Park to look for her car which wasn't at her condo. The second has to do with the blood from the "policeman" in the trunk. The trunk was empty before he entered the condo. No blood mentioned at all. But minutes before, in a phone call from Karen, he was told that her friend was lying in her trunk, bloody and in a police-mans uniform. The third was a few pages later when he worries about the police finding blood evidence in Karen's trunk from the same man mentioned. Yet it was stated previously the trunk was clean.
These are things that bother me but I think I'm bothered less by them here because Locke's books are anything by simple. You really need to follow along and pay attention. I guess with so much drama all around I can overlook a few minor contradictions. I do wish someone would have caught them for him though. But I really, really liked the story, The ending was the edge-of-your-seat type of ending. I wasn't prepared for Rachel's answer most of all and... hell, I wasn't prepared for a lot of it. For 99 cents on Kindle you really can't beat it. I'm really happen I happened to see this while browsing in the Kindle store.(less)
Finally started this last night, read half in about 20 minutes, finished the last half in 20 minutes this morning. I have to agree with a friend who s...moreFinally started this last night, read half in about 20 minutes, finished the last half in 20 minutes this morning. I have to agree with a friend who said she feels cheated. It's just so, so short. Gardner's a fantastic author and I love this series. I'm going to start Catch Meneed this. This is one of the very small series that I hope goes on for a long time. Catch Me is the 6th full book with this as a companion book. I forget what I paid for it. If its 99cents I'd say it's "worth" it. Anymore than that I'd have to admit you're not missing a thing by not reading this.
(This is another time when I wish we had half stars too.) This is maybe the third ebook I've been able to get through. I'm not yet an ereader and unles...more(This is another time when I wish we had half stars too.) This is maybe the third ebook I've been able to get through. I'm not yet an ereader and unless I'm interested in the story I lose interest even faster with an electronic or audio book than one in print. Luckily the author had a lot going on in the book which kept me wanting to know more, wanting to know how this or that turned out. This isn't long and it's very fast-paced. It's so fast-paced that if anymore were going on it may well have been too much, not giving the reader time to adjust. But that didn't happen and I was kept wanting to know more. The author has a talent for story-telling and intertwinces her characters and the lives of said characters well. The only major flaw I have to mention is the editing because this needs it which the author is aware of and let me know. That's why I was able to overlook it. Usually a lack of editing bothers me to no end but with the author aware, and wanting to know opinions of the story itself, I could overlook it. With proper editing I think she has something here. The best part was the end which, even though it is definitely a proper ending (I know how important this is to some - it is to me), there is enough material here to bring on a sequel. (I'm not a huge fan of sequels and trilogies and whatnot but it seems most people are nowadays.) Oh, I do have to mention something else - it's a tad bit religious. If you're anti-religon this probably isn't for you. I can't say it's "preachy", it's not. But I'm kind of weird with reading/hearing about God and everything relating. I have my beliefs and I guess I think it's a personal thing... Not sure really. But this isn't preachy in any way, it's just that one or two of the characters are very religious and the author translates this. Like any good author would. But there were a few paragraphs I skimmed because of it. That's purely personal though. People who like Christian fiction might really enjoy this, assuming they're not the uppity kind who are offended by curse words and talk of sex. (In my opinion there isn't too much of either in this story - it's pretty close to real life in that regard.) (less)