Summer Blog Challenge Day 19 Digest

All the posts for August 26, 2011

Until tomorrow,
The Management

The Bullet by Mary Louise Kelly

[DISCLAIMER]I was given an advance copy of The Bullet through Netgalley, in return for an honest review.[/DISCLAIMER]

I want to start off by saying all of the things that didn’t work for me in this book. I want to do this because there are a lot of things I did like, and I don’t want to forget to put this bit in, in the post love-in haze that is sure to follow.

First, there were a lot of awkward uses of language. I don’t know about you, but I don’t believe there’s really a place in books for one. Word. Sentences. as a way to emphasize what the narrator is saying. I get that the book was taking on a conversational tone, and I am not sure what the best way would be to go about this, but playing with the punctuation took me out of the story.

Then there’s the main character’s reactions at the end of the book. I have a hard time buying them. Granted, you can chalk it up to unreliable narrator if you want, but I wanted to see the genuine effect that her decisions would have on a person.

Beyond these two complaints, however, The Bullet is a strong story, carried on the backs of deep characters, a plot that has real depth, an a mystery that had me guessing all the way through. (I was wrong.)

The dangerous action scenes were not as dangerous or action-y as I’ve seen in other stories, but that lent the story a credibility that those other stories didn’t have.

Kelly made me care about the relationships in the book, both familial and romantic, and though I cringed at some decisions that I thought were bad ones, they felt like true unforced errors, rather than an author trying to force something in order to move to the next scene.

The book flowed well. The conversational tone of the narrator, though it wasn’t without its problems, really helped keep the story going, and situation, rather than quality of story, dictated my reading breaks.

As I said, the ending was a bit disappointing, but I finished the book in two days, and when I wasn’t reading it, I was thinking about it.

The Bullet is expected to be released March 17, and if your tastes run to the smarter, less police-procedural thrillers, this might be the book for you.

Branching Out

Admittedly, World of Warcraft has dominated my video game playing for the last several years. There's been a few ventures into other games, some of them MMOs, some of them console games, but WoW has been my mainstay for quite a while.

Yesterday when I bought my new video card, it came with a coupon for a free version of Deus Ex: Human Revolution. I don't know anything about this game but what I was (semi) aware of is that it is only available through Steam. A few months ago I tried signing up with Steam but ran into problems with the account creation on their web site so I just gave up. Now with a free game code in hand, I've gone back and - successfully this time - signed up.

As Deus Ex downloads, I've been thumbing through the titles and realized that there are a lot of games out there. Well, maybe not so much a realization as quite often Cliff rambles on and on about games on Steam, so I guess I kinda knew. The thing is, I don't know anything about any of these games. Which are good? Which are bad? Which are worth paying closer to retail price for? Which do I want but should wait until some kind of sale happens?

So I put it out there to you, non-WoW players. Help pull me out of the fog. Name me some good games!