Bjørn's Reviews > Blackthorn

Blackthorn by Terry Tyler
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it was amazing

My fifth Terry Tyler book and a fifth five-star rating.

Blackthorn, the largest settlement of those remaining after a virus destroyed 95% of the population, is a mess. Drinking, violence, strikes, hunger, full prisons, sadistic guards, classism. One day a charismatic and very good looking young man is stricken by the vision of the Light. In a society that has long forgotten all the religions, Ryder Swift is first laughed at, then listened to, then followed. The Blackthorn residents discover inner peace, begin to help each other, find happiness without the drink.

At least most of them. Most of the time. Mostly when there are witnesses.

It's a cynical book about cynical people (if you use the phrase "my religious feelings" non-ironically, there's a chance your religious feelings will get hurt). I shouted at my e-reader and more than once I had to stop reading and do something else – but never because I lost interest. If anything, some plot twists were too brutal and I needed rest, I was too invested in some of the characters. There were a few tears as well.

The author's writing is becoming more and more refined and literary – multiple points of view, present tense, alternating between first and third person, yet managing to keep the voices of the characters so clearly different that I didn't need to go back and check who is currently talking to me. The characters felt very real, which wasn't always a good thing; the dialogue delightful, especially the scenes narrated by lieutenant Hemsley. The only bit that I felt could have been improved was one "as you know" scene – the type of conversation where characters talk about the things they've done and said elsewhere. It wasn't bad, it just wasn't as great as everything else.

Who knew December would bring me another contender for book of the year?
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Reading Progress

November 26, 2019 – Shelved
November 26, 2019 – Shelved as: to-read
November 29, 2019 – Started Reading
November 29, 2019 –
November 30, 2019 –
page 141
27.7% ""He interests me; just as I have wondered, on occasion, what it would be like to be swaggering and dramatic, I also ponder how it must feel to possess those qualities so admired by the world: spontaneity, a taste for adventure, an outgoing and cheery manner."

If this was any better, it would be pizza."
December 1, 2019 –
December 4, 2019 – Finished Reading

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