Pam recommended this the other day at work. She was trying to restock a display, and of the three books she'd picked up, I took two. Her fault for pic Pam recommended this the other day at work. She was trying to restock a display, and of the three books she'd picked up, I took two. Her fault for picking such good books to restock with. ;)
This book... I feel like I want to own it, because good lord, as much as I hate to admit it, I relate so well. Without the cocaine and drugs, granted.
So, while there were a few spots the story dragged a little, I loved it. It made a great snow-day read.
I'd sum it up as chick lit meets realistic fiction meets romance. ...more
Audiobook. Excellent narration. The punctuation is unusual - it's aggravating at first, but it seemed to fade over time. Not sure if I just got used tAudiobook. Excellent narration. The punctuation is unusual - it's aggravating at first, but it seemed to fade over time. Not sure if I just got used to it, or he toned it down. Hard to say when it's audio.
The setting is post-plague. Civilization has broken down. The remaining humans are homicidal a-holes. Even little girls and sweet old grannies.
The main character is a small plane pilot, Hig. Hig is the classic grieving good guy. He and his best canine pal, Jasper, live at an abandoned private airport where he shares territory with Bangley, a cranky, savvy, weapons-crazed "Jayne Cobb meets Sam Elliot meets Delta Force meets... something a little unexpected."
I loved Bangley (I especially loved the way he was narrated in audio). He's the guy Preppers want to be - if by "prepping" one intends to stockpile weapons and crates of grenades.
There's cynicism, a lot of sadness, some humor, a little hope, and a couple great bloodthirsty moments. I had a couple moments where I was saying, "Just SHOOT!"
Sidenote: Mt Evans and Longs Peak are mixed up. So if you're familiar with Mt. Evans, don't let that throw you for a loop. The book is set East of Boulder in Erie (SW corner) at a private airport. (For a general idea: Pics from a property listing)
There's still some disorienting geography here that I never did get quite ironed out, but I didn't focus too much on it lest it totally derail me. I will admit to looking at maps more than I probably should have. Subjective curiosity since I live on the Front Range.
(view spoiler)[ At one point Hig goes hunting and walks to the mountains, then up to Indian Peaks Wilderness, nearly 40 miles away (straight from Erie). This puzzles me - he'd have had to walk through Boulder to get to the foothills & given that there are still people around and homicidal to boot, how is he just walking through Boulder like no big deal? I must have missed something there... audiobook, maybe I tuned out? (hide spoiler)]
Overall, I loved it. It feels like a great recommendation for small plane enthusiasts, since flying and his Cessna get plenty of attention in this book (if they don't earn "character" status on their own as it is).
Random spoilery thoughts: (view spoiler)[ Jasper's death was wrenching. He did a beautiful job of conveying that loss. It maybe hit a little on my raw side, making me think of Juno (our dog we lost this past summer).
His weirdly cocky introduction to Pops with the smartass signs - I just thought that was weird, though the "I am not a pheasant" part was funny.
One detailed sex scene came up just as I was driving to work. I had an awful paranoia I was going to accidentally hit the play button on my phone once I was at work. It has happened before, but thankfully (really - thank God!) not when someone's face was crammed into someone else's privates.
Loved the Grand Junction airport scene and the people who set the trap. Also, Heller did a wonderful job of making his own creepy airport version of American Gothic come to life.
I almost felt zombies needed to make an appearance. So used to them in dystopian style books now...
I adore Amy Poehler - I love her comedy, I love her characters, I think she's awesome, so this bums me out. I don't know that she actually hates writiI adore Amy Poehler - I love her comedy, I love her characters, I think she's awesome, so this bums me out. I don't know that she actually hates writing as much as the 20 minute (yes, 20) disclaimer about how much she hates writing indicates, so much as she wrote this during a period of major transition and upheaval in her life. It feels like it seeped in and flavored the book and I just couldn't warm up to it.
From what I listened to, there were some gems of wisdom in there that I appreciated, but it felt like too much sand to sift through to get to them. I think at some point I'll just pick up the text version of the book and skim what doesn't work for me, make note of what does, and call it a day.
Started out with a slight flavor of Will Grayson, Will Grayson, but nosedived quickly.
I didn't get far. I bailed in the middle of her bizarro ramblingStarted out with a slight flavor of Will Grayson, Will Grayson, but nosedived quickly.
I didn't get far. I bailed in the middle of her bizarro rambling about the green notebook. I'm curious to see the text version of this book to see how many times "green notebook" is crammed into one paragraph.
A slower paced spin on Zombie tales, Stony is an interesting figure: born a zombie, he inexplicably grows into a man and finds himself entangled in thA slower paced spin on Zombie tales, Stony is an interesting figure: born a zombie, he inexplicably grows into a man and finds himself entangled in the Undead Underground.
I really wanted to love this. I loved the concept and really enjoyed the first part, but I felt that while the other 3 parts covered some interesting ground, it just wasn't enough to keep me hooked or emotionally invested. Many of my questions were left unanswered, so some of the finer points or more interesting philosophies were swept under the rug in favor of "but...how ...? why?..." etc.
Lots of great reviews for this, so check those out if you want a more balanced perspective!
I enjoyed it. As a romance, it was more substantial in story and not too fixated on, or terribly graphic, on the sex scenes (all things in moderation,I enjoyed it. As a romance, it was more substantial in story and not too fixated on, or terribly graphic, on the sex scenes (all things in moderation, and all that, right?). I guess I land in the camp of those who feel you can only plug in a light so many ways and a light alone certainly doesn't qualify as a fully furnished room. Thank heaven for authors that take a moment to decorate and create some atmosphere. Put a couch in there. Maybe a tea pot and some books or something... a cozy blanket and a place to rest my feet. Give me a little substance and put a lampshade on that light before you flip the switch. I want to appreciate the light for the atmosphere it adds to the room...not sit there squinting and uncomfortable.
I liked that the characters had more dimension than usual, and one actually gave some sensible, practical advice. I didn't like that the meeting between the two main characters was the usual "bad impression turns good" scenario, but ah well.
The female main character is not the usual "headstrong stubborn" female who makes stupid choices just because they're there to make. This one makes a couple big choices out of desperation, but others out of her need to get distance and grow and assert herself. I liked that. She also goes after what she wants and defines it, instead of swooning around helplessly.
The male main character has his own issues to work through and is coming to terms with a disability. I started the book thinking "oh, great, he's going to magically be cured at the end of the book" (cue an eye roll) and I was pleased to see that she saw it through start to finish without resorting to magic and miracles. There's even a nice side comment that if it were a fairy tale, that'd be the case... but it's not going to happen. I liked that.
The conversation reads a bit stilted - especially early on, the dialogue didn't flow very well for me. Because of this, I don't think I really immersed myself in the book, but I "observed" it, for the most part, as an enjoyable thing. Still, I loved the concept - particularly that a group of veterans are working through their issues together and that it (without getting too deep for an escape read) addresses the aftermath of war on soldiers in a historical setting. ...more
Troubleshooting your body: what hurts? does it do this when you do this? yes? probably its this... try this test...hurts more? You're probably right,Troubleshooting your body: what hurts? does it do this when you do this? yes? probably its this... try this test...hurts more? You're probably right, then... try this/go to a doctor/etc.
Probably still go to a doctor for due diligence anyway, but the book is a good start narrowing it down to something a little more specific than "my knee hurts."
Borrowed it as an ILL, then bought it for $5. Figure that's $5 well spent....more
Could be suggested as a thriller style sci-fi for kids. Maybe reluctant readers? I'm not sure it has enough suspense going to really grab on and hold Could be suggested as a thriller style sci-fi for kids. Maybe reluctant readers? I'm not sure it has enough suspense going to really grab on and hold attention.
My main beef and loss of interest came with the main character morphing into a jerk. He starts out a reasonably sympathetic character - he keeps his jerk thoughts inside his head. Then they start coming out his mouth and it goes downhill from there. What's with the attitude, kid? Other than a couple weird letters, he has no real reason to get his panties wadded... his pal Chip does, considering the bomb dropped on him out of the blue, but Jonah's malfunction & bad attitude after the FBI scene seems overboard when he previously seemed like a pretty laid back kid.
Also, his parents are accommodating of his attitude to the point smoke should be pouring from around their gears.
So, yeah, I wasn't in tune with a little jerk in training as the hero of the tale.
A phone set to speakerphone in the hand of the person trying to be a spy is going to be broadcasting the listener's end of the conversation, not the spy's.
There's no way in hades a kid is going to be able to open a folder, flip through the pages and take 6 pics per page, get it closed again and get back in her seat while the folder-keeper is simply turned around in his chair. Or, if so, she has a bright future in thievery. Maybe stealing babies...
Not my cuppa tea, but that won't keep me from giving it to kids - they'll get into the mystery and "what's going on" and tear through it fluff...which it is... suspense fluff. ...more
This one seems hard to review without saying too much - the story doesn't unfold so much as it is like those cellophane anatomy illustrations in encycThis one seems hard to review without saying too much - the story doesn't unfold so much as it is like those cellophane anatomy illustrations in encyclopedias back in the day, where each page you turned added another layer till you eventually saw the finished product. I don't want to blurt out something that fills in all the blanks right off the bat, because that "filling in" process is half the fun.
As an audiobook, the narration was excellent. I loved how the story unfolded, the characters, the interpretation of a popular theme and details of how that particular interpretation worked, and even the ending.
There were a couple gruesome scenes in there that were a bit too disturbing for me. It was conflicting: on one hand, par for the course in this sort of novel...on the other, a concept was being considered that put a twist on what was happening. In both cases, way too much detail.
(view spoiler)[ The 5 year old getting beheaded. I wasn't really buying into the idea of the "innocent little 5 year old boy," at least. The kids were, in a way, innocents, but also feral little super predators and creepy as sh#t. So that wasn't as disturbing as the level of detail in the scene. It read a little too real.
I also wasn't into the nastiness between two female characters. It got tiresome and overplayed quickly. One was clearly meant to be a villain, but I was on board with a character's assessment of a peripheral "heroine" character as a sort of criminal in her own right. And, she was a stone cold obnoxious b#tch in the second half of the book. This did not help. In one scene (view spoiler)[the flare (hide spoiler)] I was stunned at her stubborn stupidity.
On the flip side, that character had one scene early in her b#tch career that made me laugh out loud. (view spoiler)[ Ms. J: "Do you want me to punch you in the face again?" (hide spoiler)]
I liked the main character and Parks. I also liked Ghallager's (sp?) assessment of their relationship ("mouse barking at a pit bull").
I think, overall, this would be a good short read for fans of The Passage, or similar books. (view spoiler)[These zombies read a bit vampy (of the engineered sci fi vamp variety, not hipster seattle sparkleparty vamps) and you've got the whole Mad Max Dystopian thing going on, as well. Fans of The Stand might like it, too, and certainly Walking Dead viewers. (hide spoiler)]