Tuesday, October 13, 2009
You Play, You Pay by B. L. Morgan
(c) July 2009
I have read all of Bob's work. I have known this talented writer since 2001 (or was it 2000?) and was stoked to get a copy of his latest book: You Play, You Pay, in the post and I devoured it in to sittings (damn job lol).
I have one word for you: Fantastic.
This book is extremely readable and based on the premise of everyone's wish to find a bag filled with money. And Sheriff Hector O'Grady has done just that. He is thinking of his financial future after retiring and he knows that a cops retirement fund is not going to support him and his wife. Even now they are just getting by with two kids to feed and mortgage to pay.
Unfortunately, the money does belong to someone and that someone is a person you don't mess with and three men are sent out to find that money and get it back, regardless of the cost.
It is Hector who pays the greatest cost.
You'll fly through this book as the plot and characters carry forward from one page to the next. It is a short book and I really would have loved to see more.
Bob knows how to tell a tale and he spins the web so thick, one can't escape until the last page.
Patient Zero by Jonathan Maberry
St Martin's Press
This is the first Jonathan Maberry book I have read, though I've known of him a long time. I discovered him over at the Masters of Horror social site. I ordered Patient Zero for two solid reasons.
The first: It sounded like a zombie book, and I like zombies.
The second: It sounded like a zombie book, and I like zombies.
And yes, this is a zombie novel. The story is about Joe ledger, a cop who is recruited into a secret organisation called The Department of Military Science (DMS). They fight terrorists who are trying to release a new virus that turns people into zombies.
Joe is a smart-ass detective and is not interested at first, so Mr. Church has to find some leverage to get Joe to join them and lead a small team into the jaws of hell. They find that leverage in the form of Joe's close friend and shrink: Rudy.
Joe has a team of five and during their first training together, they get called out and attack a warehouse, where zombies are getting ready to feast on children, or infect them and send the blighters home. (That part is not clear.)
The book is told in first person when we read of Joe Ledger, and told in third person with all other characters. I believe Jonathan is far better at third person as I didn't really get into Joe's character, I found him clichéd and in need of an injection of life, a spark of something that was missing through out the book. I liked the terrorist, Gault, more than Joe. This character leapt from the pages.
I also found interest in this book waning as it seemed to take forever to get to the zombies. There was a LOT of explaining going on to entice Joe into the fold and it was told in a boring manner. Personally I didn't think all those details needed to be told. I know it was added to give flair and explain how the zombie virus worked, but for me, nope. I found myself skipping paragraphs and waiting to reach the end of the chapter and many chapters are really short.
When we finally got to the action, the first person POV killed the scene. Some parts were over-explained and others were not.
This book did not do it for me.