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Mr Blank Paperback – October 23, 2012


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 300 pages
  • Publisher: Candlemark & Gleam (October 23, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 193646036X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1936460366
  • Product Dimensions: 0.7 x 5.9 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,769,594 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Much like film noir, Justin Robinson was born and raised in Los Angeles. He splits his time between editing comic books, writing prose and wondering what that disgusting smell is. Degrees in Anthropology and History prepared him for unemployment, but an obsession with horror fiction and a laundry list of phobias provided a more attractive option.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Though not quite the same in tone, Mr. Blank, for me, is up there with the Illuminatus!
Scott Closter
If you want something that cracks you up, keeps you guessing, and has you cheering all at once, buy this.
Xander
His characters are fascinating and well developed in this action pack, fast paced book.
My Cozie Corner {Book Reviews}

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Charlotte Miller on November 27, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Loved reading this! The clever narrative and LA setting made this book a really fun experience. I want to see it on the big screen! Robinson's writing is vivid, full of visual punch, and he deploys imaginative genre-bending (Raymond Chandler meets sci fi) to dish up a story with across-the-board appeal. And it comes with a twist at the end. Can't wait until his next book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By R. Marcus Atihsamy on November 23, 2012
Format: Paperback
An exciting, darkly delightful tale. Expertly blending noir with conspiracy theory, Mr Blank is rife with action, intrigue and paranoia of the first order. Eschewing the grim meditations of more cyncial genre fare, Mr Blank instead approaches the world of conspiracy theory with a sarcastic sense of humor, at times reminiscent of Catch-22, but ultimately original in both tone and content.

Perhaps the most entertaining aspect of the novel is the pleathora of references. Everything from pop-culture, to film, to history (some real, some "alternative") is leveraged to establish setting, define characters and create context for the drama of the story. Unlike other novels that attempt this(but fail by being overly subtle or obscure), Robinson use of this device taps into a common narrative that nearly every reader will be familiar with. This is not to say there is anything approaching predictability, however - if anything, the use of references enhances the mystery, often engendering a sense of Deja Vu in the reader (oh yeah... I think I remember something about the CIA being involved in the Kennedy assassination...creepy!). Best of all, if you happen to come across a reference you don't understand, the story doesn't fall apart. Robinson takes care to provide sufficent context, keeping the reader engaged rather than inspiring them to stray off to wikipedia.

All in all, Mr Blank is a smart, witty tale that never fails to entertain. It can be tricky keeping all the angles straight, but the characters in the book suffer from this right alongside the reader, so rather than detracting from the narrative, it enhances it by creating simpatico with the plight of the progtagonist.

Highly recommended, Mr Blank will not disappoint! Though it may leave you looking over your shoulder...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Leila V on January 2, 2013
Format: Paperback
If you're at all interested in conspiracies or mysteries, I highly suggest this novel to you. I loved reading about a man who casually performed mundane tasks that included planting envelopes in lockers, moving goats blood, and annoying members of opposing conspiracies on the same day.

I'm especially enamored with Mina; it's not very often I come across women characters who are written so well. She's not over-the-top badass with guns/swords blazing, but neither is she damsel in distress. In fact, she does a reasonable amount of ass kicking/ass saving on her own, without being unbelievable. She's silly, but also sexy in a world where 'plus size' is typically an insult.

Blank's narration was hilarious, and I loved all of the little references to pop culture and other things. Some references were definitely lost on me, but I was pleased to catch the Georges St-Pierre mention in the latter half of the book.

The end of the book worked really well for me, and although I don't want to give anything away, I will say that it was well done and not many people could have pulled it off the way Justin did. Even if you're not a huge fan of conspiracies or mysteries, I'd suggest reading it purely for the humor and character writing/world building. And now, I find myself wanting to be part of the Knights Templar. Just a little bit. And lordy do I ever wish this was coming to a theater near me.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Stephen Pillster on December 17, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
After reading the first couple of chapters I thought, glib. But the more I read the more I was impressed with his knowledge of cultural touchpoints. So, after suspending disbelief, I was forced to abandon it altogether. I mostly love the noir feel of his prose...with a twist. Most recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Pop Bop TOP 500 REVIEWER on June 19, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
There are a fair number of books out there that attempt to blend a noir sensibility with a sci-fi setting or a fantasy premise. Most run in to problems because the alien/sci-fi/fantasy angle takes so much energy and space to keep going that the noir feel falls to the side. This book is a happy find because the world-weary, honorable but tempted, loyal but double-crossed, heroic but cautious star, Mr. Blank, is always the focus of the story, and his noirish musings and patter are what fuel the tale. The alien/strange parts of the plot are just garnish.

Mr. Blank appears to be a small time gofer. But he has his hand in every, I mean every, dark cult and arcane society and group of conspirators in L.A. He is the guy who, from his vantage point, can see the forest, (because he knows all of the trees). He has a different identity for each role he plays. When someone tries to have him whacked, every single creepy weird group in L.A. might be the culprit. The noir plot implications are almost infinite, and the author plays with them in a very satisfying fashion.

So, we get a fair amount of gritty old L.A., (which I prefer to Sam Spade's gritty old San Francisco), a healthy dose of witty dialogue and interior monologue, and a convincing, (or at least fictionally convincing), sense of the daily routine of a fixer/operator. I thought the quieter parts of the book were the best part, but whether you like big action or smaller grace notes and throwaway bits, there's something here for every slightly restless or adventuresome noir fan.

But all of this is sounding a bit pompous. The bottom line is that the book is fun and entertaining. The author is accomplished, knows what he is doing, and has a firm command of the culture he is kidding.
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