280 of 318 people found the following review helpful
13 Ways of Looking at "Beat the Reaper",
This review is from: Beat the Reaper: A Novel (Dr. Pietro Brnwa Novels) (Hardcover)
1. As if it were a TV show: It's "House" meets the "Sopranos."
2. In historical context: It's the best comic crime fiction debut since Robert Crais's "The Monkey's Raincoat."
3. Through a mourning veil for David Foster Wallace: Greatest footnotes since he died.
4. If you are one of those who only read nonfiction: It will teach you cool stuff about medicine, the Mafia and Auschwitz.
5. In case you like dramatic irony: The violence in it is clinical, the clinical sloppy and vile.
6. As if it were on Facebook: Its friends would be Jonathan Lethem's "Motherless in Brooklyn" and Richard Dooling's "Critical Care," but it would be the funny, outgoing one.
7. On a personal note: It is only the fourth book in my adult life I stayed awake to finish once starting it that night.
8. As if it had already been made into a movie: The book is better.
9. As a bar mitzvah present: Coolest ever.
10. As if flipping through its pages randomly: Did you notice fat men have diagonal creases in their nipples? Who does Michael Corleone imitate when he drops the gun after he shoots the cop? How about an exquisite description of the Hudson in midwinter? There's at least one of these on every page.
11. If you were to judge it by its cover: Don't. It's not Dean Koontz.
12. As an investment; Get the first edition.
13. As if it were the first of many: Please.
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Showing 1-10 of 17 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jan 13, 2009 11:34:48 AM PST
14. As a kick in the pants: This is a novel that makes you want to write a novel. Or if you've written one, another one. But maybe better to leave that to Josh Bazell, who makes it look so easy that he probably just does it in stolen elevator moments on his BlackBerry--and who has created a narrator with a voice so heavenly that it's hard to focus on the fantastic characters he's left surrounded by at the end of the story, and whom I'm hereby begging Bazell to bring back in volume 2.
In reply to an earlier post on Sep 11, 2009 2:59:19 PM PDT
Dmitry Portnoy says:
The cover remark in my original review refers to the hardcover illustration. If you were to judge it by the softcover: Don't. It's not Terry Pratchett. --dp
Posted on Jan 30, 2010 8:23:21 AM PST
Great review! You made me want to read the book and want to read more reviews by you.
Posted on Feb 18, 2010 4:58:40 AM PST
Lee Yusten says:
Wonderful review Dmitry. #2, had me wanting to read this....'cause I love Elvis Cole!
Posted on Apr 19, 2010 1:47:45 PM PDT
Lorraine P. Vismara says:
i, too found this book incredible and stayed up two nights to finish. i have never read anything as bizarre and entertaining as this book. where did he get the idea, the names of the characters.....unbelievable.
Posted on Jul 27, 2010 1:27:01 PM PDT
Posted on Sep 6, 2011 5:15:47 PM PDT
This book made me wince! It was horrifying... I want more.
Posted on Feb 18, 2012 12:31:27 PM PST
Listen, Josh -- you didn't have to write a review like this. I'd have read the book anyhow. And I did without seeing this. But almost didn't -- remember the one about "don't judge a book by its cover"? I almost did.
It's a good thing you've written another book. Otherwise I'd have to kill you.
Posted on May 19, 2012 7:31:24 PM PDT
In reply to an earlier post on May 19, 2012 7:55:13 PM PDT
Dmitry Portnoy says:
I agree. The book IS better than my review.