Three Strikes is an entertaining short story. The cast of characters appear in a series of Scott Soloff's books. I found the voice of the narrator, thThree Strikes is an entertaining short story. The cast of characters appear in a series of Scott Soloff's books. I found the voice of the narrator, the eponymous Picker, a little off-putting at first, but I got used to it and soon found that it conveyed much about his character.
The story is self-contained and you do not (I have not) need to read any of the full length books in the series to appreciate and enjoy Three Strikes. Scott manages to explain all the essentials without slowing down the plot progression or bogging the reader down in long descriptive passages. Full marks for style.
There were quite a few spelling mistakes/typos...at first I wondered if some of them were there to help portray Picker's voice - some unconventional spellings definitely were there to convey accent - however, the two misplaced apostrophes (both on the same page) were not. "Two Rotweiller's and a Shepherd. It is not uncommon for ones' defenses...". I have my grammar police hat on today!
There was one howling great factual error. A six-week old GSD does not weigh 40 lbs!! It won't reach that until around four months (16 weeks). Nor would a six week old GSD be tall enough to put paws on one's chest. GSDs are a similar sized dog to Golden Retrievers; when I was 9 yo, we had a litter of GRs and when they left at 8 weeks old, I could still carry them (one at a time!).
The rest of the descriptions of Kato (aka the monster) seem plausible ... and yes, I'd love a dog like that!
All in all Three Strikes is a great short read and I'll be looking out for more of Scott Soloff's work.
Thanks Scott for highlighting on Goodreads your 24 hour Amazon giveaway of this great introduction to your work. ...more
Not really the sort of book I generally read, but it was free on Amazon and the blurb is intriguing. The story lived up to the blurb, even if I foundNot really the sort of book I generally read, but it was free on Amazon and the blurb is intriguing. The story lived up to the blurb, even if I found the violence depicked a bit gruesome at first, not so much for the descriptions, but the fact that someone could (think of) do these things to others; the knowledge that mankind does is rather depressing. By the end, the escalation became almost funny in its over-the-topness. The ending was in some was inevitable, but not certain; the will he/will she question was ket open until the last moment. The book is brilliantly executed and very satisfying. If you enjoy The Hitcher, you enjoy this story.
It's a short story taster for the authors' collaboration (Jack and Blake Crouch), written with each of them taking one of the characters and writing scenes alternately, like a tag game. I only found this out when I read the notes at the end. Whilst reading it, I couldn't tell there were two separate writers and that they were approaching the writing as a kind of game/challenge/competition. The result is well worth the effort....more
[2012-06-28] Read this after work tonight. Like the wine at the wedding in Cana, the best was saved till last in Matthew's giveaway. At the beginning,[2012-06-28] Read this after work tonight. Like the wine at the wedding in Cana, the best was saved till last in Matthew's giveaway. At the beginning, I wondered if I would enjoy this story; I couldn't see the question behind it (Matthew's stories start from a question which he answers for himself by writing). When I got to the end, the question I asked myself was not the one with which Matthew started. I don't want to say more here, for fear of spoiling the story for others. When time allows, I may write a blog post discussing it.
As ever with Matthew's books, the story is excellently crafted. The descriptions are so well done that you walk with the seven through The Bleak and face the monsters with them. The ending was both surprising and obvious: surprising when we got to it, but obvious when looking back at it.
I think I had better stop before I give too much away...so I will finish my saying "Go Buy This Book". You won't regret it....more
[2012-06-23] Downloaded (thanks Matthew for the six-day giveaway!) and read within the hour. Fantastic story! Entirely complete (excuse the tautology)[2012-06-23] Downloaded (thanks Matthew for the six-day giveaway!) and read within the hour. Fantastic story! Entirely complete (excuse the tautology) and with lots to think about. I also enjoyed reading Matthew's thoughts on the book that are bundled with the story (I would have liked a blank page between to the two, just to allow my mind to close from the story).
Fanatastic word-smithing, superbing plotting and excellently drawn characters in such a short time. A real "find"...more
[2012-06-21] Thanks Matthew - your giveaway is appreciated. Will read and review.
[201-06-23] Just read this short story whilst sitting the sun and sti[2012-06-21] Thanks Matthew - your giveaway is appreciated. Will read and review.
[201-06-23] Just read this short story whilst sitting the sun and stiff breeze (missing the rain showers!).
Actual rating 4.5 stars
What an excellent story! It is a complete package on its own - but leaves you with "what happens next?" and "how do I get to know these characters better?" ringing through your head. The ending is bittersweet and, at least to me, entirely logical with what we know of the situation. It is not a cliffhanger; this is a complete tale, but like all good stories, it invites you to imagine the ongoing lives of the protagonists. In addition, Matthew Iden structures this so that I also wondered about what had happened in the times before the glimpse into the Kingdon of Mercia that we are afforded.
This is a 4.5 start only because I felt the tale was told a little hurriedly. Just a few more sentences in several of the scenes would have made the whole shine that much more brightly.
Now: Matthew - when will the trilogy be out? I definitely feel that the potential is here!
Thank you for inviting me to the 2 day giveaway for this story...looking forward to the next two stories!...more