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The Blaze

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3.89  ·  Rating details ·  484 ratings  ·  93 reviews
One man knows the connection between two extraordinary acts of arson, fifteen years apart, in his Montana hometown--if only he could remember it.

Having lost much of his memory from a traumatic brain injury sustained in Iraq, army veteran Matthew Rose is called back to Montana after his father's death to settle his affairs, and hopefully to settle the past as well. It's not
...more
Kindle Edition, 384 pages
Published January 21st 2020 by G.P. Putnam's Sons
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Average rating 3.89  · 
Rating details
 ·  484 ratings  ·  93 reviews


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Chelsea Humphrey
Debating between a 4-5 star rating, so I'll go with a 4.5 rounded up to 5! Review to come.

******************

I'm really excited to dig into my ARC of this one, and since there is no synopsis listed on Goodreads other than on the giveaway page, I'm including it below:

"One man knows the connection between two extraordinary acts of arson, fifteen years apart, in his Montana hometown--if only he could remember it.

Having lost much of his memory from a traumatic brain injury sustained in Iraq, army ve
...more
Rich
Feb 24, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am still on a good role and another good book. I had some doubts about this one going into it for I am not the biggest fan of Characters losing their memory as a main plot to the story. I often found it annoying and frustrating and hard to believe in previous books. I have to say it is done very good in this book and the author gets away with it. The story made sense and had a very good flow to it and the main characters and secondary characters were very good. It is hard for me to find anythi ...more
CD {Boulder Blvd}
Jan 29, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: s-bv-library
Normally I'm not big on amnesia plots, but this one really worked for me. I liked the characters and the way the past events and present murders came together. Great plot. ...more
Rissa
Feb 18, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The blaze⭐️
Matthew Rose used to be in the military he served with bravery and honor and then he got in this accident. Well he doesn’t remember the accident he doesn’t remember anything really and now you know as much as him. For starters I really enjoyed seeing him confused and like trying to figure out where he is and what was going on when we were following him and his troop then moving forward in time we get to see his life and like trying to figure out who he’s going to be and what he’s gonn
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Jamie
Feb 07, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book, it was a quick fast paced “thriller”. I enjoyed the main character- Matt being a war veteran who is trying to put his life back together and how difficult that can really be. The author does an incredible job getting those descriptions accurate.
I was a huge fan of Georgie and felt like I wanted more between Matt and Georgie. Maybe a follow up book?
There were a lot of characters too follow and at one point I felt a little lost but overall I liked the mystery and it kept me
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Rick Molitor
Jul 09, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a really good story about a returning vet with issues. He can't remember things because of a brain injury and as he returns to where he grew up, things begin to break. A very good story. ...more
Jackie
Jan 03, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’m grateful to have won an advanced reader copy of this book from goodreads. I really enjoyed this story.

This book is not easy to describe. It’s a mystery but you don’t necessarily know that as the book starts. In fact, the book starts in a wars one with a guy puking on his feet. While amnesia might seem like a convenient plot device, it never comes across that way. The reader genuinely feels connected to our protagonist, a guy serving his country when he’s injured. A lot of things happen to hi
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Sarah
Jan 23, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the kind of book I love to read for myself--not because it's going to win any literary awards or break new ground.

Matthew, the main character, is injured in Iraq during an explosion, but it's one of those that is difficult to see. His brain was rattled (this just happened to many American soldiers when our Iraqi military base was bombed by Iran), and Matthew lost his memory. He is able to fake it fairly well and seems to be a fast learner, so he listens to his friends and decides to go
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Chris
Jan 22, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
DNF, good writing, and pretty good story but lost my interest a third of the way in
Trent
Jan 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Chad Dundas published his debut novel, “Champion of the World” in July 2016. The book, set in America in the 1920s, was an engaging look at gangsters, carnivals, bootlegging, race relations, decisions, deceptions and tragedy. To put it bluntly, it was a masterful work. When “The Blaze” was announced, I was eager to see how Dundas could switch genres from historical fiction to modern thriller. Any trepidation I had concerning a drop off in quality was assuaged upon reading the opening paragraph. ...more
Peggy
Aug 06, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I listened to this audiobook. I debated whether to give this 3 or 4 stars. So, 3 1/2. I did enjoy the story. I did enjoy the pace. What caused me to downgrade it a little was character development and some weaknesses in plotting. Matthew Rose has suffered a brain injury in an explosion in Iraq. What has happened has left him with no memory of this life. No recall of people and events growing up. He is recovering in Florida when he is called to his home town in Montana to take care of his father’ ...more
Jamie
Apr 11, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After suffering brain damage and substantial memory lost due to a bombing during his military tour, Matt returns to his home town as executor of his recently deceased father's estate. His first night back in town, however, Matt witnesses an act of arson that results in a murder and leads to a series of mysteries as Matt tries to regain his memories and the missing key to his past.

Sudden memory loss is a terrifying premise. Memory is tied so closely to identity, so one of my favorite aspects of t
...more
Lynelle
Feb 08, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
To put this review in perspective, I read 17 books in January 2020 and in the last week I’ve only gotten through 223 pages, 26 loooooong chapters, of The Blaze. I’ve found myself picking up a Dell Crossword book instead of this mystery and have decided to give it up. I can’t force another 150 pages when I really don’t care if Matthew regains his memory, if he gets back together with his old love Georgie, or if they solve the two murders. Too slow moving for me...
Brent Burch
Feb 16, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, mystery
A satisfying descent into a man's quest to rediscover his past, with tragic consequences. The amnesia trope has been used many times in books to propel the mystery forward, but having it happen to the main character while he's serving in Iraq, was a unique twist. ...more
Paula
Feb 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
Thrillers aren’t my specific go to genre, but I did enjoy this one. It’s a slower start but the later part of the book was a page turner. 3.5 stars rounded up to 4
Alan
Aug 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very satisfying thriller with an excellent presentation. Edge of your seat action and keeps you wondering and wanting to know the story.
Newt Taylor
Actually, 3 blazes. Standard fare.
 Reading Reindeer 2021 On Proxima Centauri
I found THE BLAZE exciting as we follow Matthew Rose, protagonist, in attempting to possibly unravel any part of his long-term memory loss. Suffering Traumatic Brain Injury in Iraq, Matthew remembers since, but not prior. So he basically does not know "who he is" in terms of character, personality, or past history. Uncovering that proves to be traumatic in itself as well as wildly dangerous! ...more
Tasula
Sep 26, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The mystery was good, but the characters were annoying to me. I don't think a brain injury that created big gaps in memory was a sufficient excuse for the lead character's reckless rampaging around. He is an Iraqi veteran returning to his hometown to take care of his father's affairs after dad committed suicide. He reconnects with an old friend/girlfriend, Georgie, who is a reporter for the local news. She is bright and brave, but blabs all she knows to everyone (not likely behavior for a report ...more
MJ Beaufrand
Damn it! I wanted to like this one much more than I actually did. The first two chapters were really promising for me. The writing was sparkling. Dundas has a great ear for language.

Matthew Rose is a war with with a brain injury that's wiped out all his memory. He has to go to Montana to settle the affairs of his late father. While he's there, a house goes up in flames and he has to take a picture of it.

So far so intriguing, right?

Alas, I'm a survivor of a traumatic brain injury myself, so th
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Mike Musings Book Reviews
An entertaining enough story about two arsons 15 years apart and the impact on the town and it's people. ...more
Patricia Baker
Montana in the winter, soldier with memory loss, college student killed in house fire. enjoyed this thriller set in the cold season and the descriptions of snow and wind. the author did have many phrases that added to his story. "a gang of old men," "city plows had left a three-foot Mohawk of snow in the center of the street." the plot moved along well with many characters hinting at Matt's loss of memory and drastic change in behavior in high school. must admit that the ending was not entirely ...more
Cook Memorial Public Library
A 2020 staff favorite recommended by Andrea. Read her review on the Cook Memorial Public Library blog, Shelf Life: https://shelflife.cooklib.org/2020/02...

Check our catalog: https://encore.cooklib.org/iii/encore...
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Cheryle
Feb 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Dundas is a new author to me and from reading this fantastic book I know I will be watching for others he has written.
The mysteries of traumatic brain injuries due to war are puzzling to doctors and victims. The main character of The Blaze had such an injury and has lost a lot of his memory while still able to function and remember such things as driving. Matthew finds out his estranged father has committed suicide in Montana, so he leaves his mothers home in Florida to close his fathers estate.
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Deon Stonehouse
Iraq left Mathew Rose with a gaping hole in his memory where the first two decades of his life should have been. Coming home he spent a few months in Florida with his mom and step-dad, people he no longer remembered. When he learned of his father’s death in Montana it seemed like going back to the place he grew up, settling his dad’s affairs, might be a catalyst to bring back some of those early memories. He tried to reach his father when he returned from the Middle East, but his dad wouldn’t ta ...more
Sondra Oitzinger
A Missoula Must-Read
National crises and individual identity crises arguably go hand-in-hand. 2020, with all its self-isolation, is a luckily well-timed backdrop for Chad Dundas’s thought-provoking novel, The Blaze. Due to a traumatic head injury, Dundas’ protagonist, Matthew Rose, loses most of his shared memories with significant others. The loss is intensely and poignantly isolating. Matt has survived a war-time explosion and after discharge tries to “walk off” his amnesia by reuniting with ho
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Josh
Aug 28, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't read a lot of murder/mystery books, but I thoroughly enjoyed The Blaze. Of course, it's hard not to take some enjoyment from reading a book on your front porch in which the entire story unfolds within about a two mile radius of where you sit. I live on the Missoula Northside, and this isn't just a Missoula book -- it's a Northside book, and that's pretty cool to experience.

The fact that one of the main characters is a committed young reporter for the local newspaper is also a treat. One
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Freda Witt
Feb 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Matthew Rose joined the army and was shipped to Iraq. A bomb exploded, and he lost his memory, but didn't tell anyone, because his men depended on him. After returning home, he continued to have the headaches and problems with the concussion. The army doctors couldn't find the injury, so they refused to treat him. He finally found a dr. Who realized what he had. The only treatment was long term therapy. Then, he got a call telling him his dad had committed suicide. He went to the town where he g ...more
Ann
Feb 21, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Having lost much of his memory from a traumatic brain injury sustained in Iraq, army veteran Matthew Rose is called back to Montana after his father's death to settle his affairs, and hopefully to settle the past as well. It's not only a blank to him, but a mystery. Why as a teen did he suddenly become sullen and vacant, abandoning the activities and people that had meant most to him? How did he, the son of hippy activists, wind up enlisting in the first place?

Then on his first night back, Matth
...more
Cheryl
Jan 19, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mayhem in Missoula

Matthew Rose left his hometown of Missoula, Montana, joined the Army, and ended up back in Missoula after receiving a devastating brain injury.

The brain injury has caused memory loss of his former life, with his new memories starting while puking his guts out in a Humvee in Iraq.

He ends up getting out of the Army and heads back to Missoula to take care of his father's business affairs after his father kills himself.

This was a different type story. I wasn't quite sure that I lik
...more
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