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The Bleak December Kindle Edition
|Length: 472 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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"Children of Blood and Bone"
Tomi Adeyemi conjures a stunning world of dark magic and danger in her West African-inspired fantasy debut. Learn more
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Ok by the checklist. Generic small rural town, check. Generic vet, check. Generic preacher of doom, check. Generic town crazy who is immune and has special powers, check. Generic only one radio station working, check. Generic virgin, check. Generic sellout, check. Generic stupid tactics when assaulting the monsters ESPECIALLY when you know the monsters weakness, check. That covers the first 220 pages.
The Next 240 pages. Generic witch with supernatural powers because magic now works, check. Generic escape evil prisoner who gets stupid at the first chance, check. Generic old wives tell which gives the location of power, check. Generic heroes forgetting/losing special gear, check. Generic ancient God, check. Generic ammo does not work because author says so, check. Generic monsters vulnerability to it weakness changes according to plot, check.
I will give the some thumbs up. Thumbs for the Stephen King references. Thumbs up, for some of the characters being quick on the uptake about the monsters. Thumbs up for switching the hero at the last moment.
I think I will pass on the other authors books.
In some ways, it's the book "Under The Dome" or "The Stand" could have been, had Stephen King bothered to figure out the ending before he started. Summers is sure-footed as he makes his way through the events and overarching ideas in this short novel, always giving the impression that we're safe with him and he knows precisely where he's heading. There's none of the former novel's plodding midsection here -- everything moves us forward, even when the road suddenly and unexpectedly shifts.
More than anything, though, Summers is able to evoke the feeling of isolation, of small town detachedness, of being cut off, adrift, with nothing but your own wits and perhaps those of your friends and neighbors to help you survive.
The novel's early pages especially evoke King at his best, dancing between character introductions with a rapidity and grace. Each stands out with unique voice and perspective.
I was reminded at first of of a movie that came out early in the 2000s for a while and thought I knew where we were headed. Then I wasn't. Then I really wasn't. And with every disorienting turn, there was Summers, leading the way with confidence and authority.
If I have any complaint, it's that this is also a story that's moving almost too fast. Perhaps this is the fault of the format, where each story needs to be a short novel in the Apocalypse Weird universe. The characters are wonderful, but they yearn for more space to romp and experience and be seen by us. I hope as the Winter Wonderland saga resumes, we'll start to see them with the depth Summers does.
All I know for sure is that while this series hadn't attracted my attention yet, I will be reading "The Red King" next.
Oh, and for some reason, every time I picked up my reader to continue this book, I heard Adam Duritz singing "Long December". Make of that what you will.
Most recent customer reviews
And only author Kevin Summers and his awesome narrator George Kuch could get me to...Read more