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Jam Paperback – October 23, 2012
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About the Author
Benjamin Richard "Yahtzee" Croshaw is a British-Australian comedic writer, video game journalist, author, and video game developer. He is best known for his acerbic video game review series, Zero Punctuation, for The Escapist. Before this, Croshaw gained attention in the Adventure Game Studio community for his video games. Croshaw also writes a weekly supplementary column for The Escapist, Extra Punctuation, as well as the video series Judging by the Cover. Croshaw has published two novels through Dark Horse Comics. The first was Mogworld, published in August 2010.The second, Jam, was released 2012 in October. His third -- Will Save The Galaxy For Food -- was published in February, 2017 He also co-hosts a weekly podcast/Let's Play hybrid series named Let's Drown Out along with co-host Gabriel Morton. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Jam starts out pretty strong and remains entertaining for about the first half, but it begins to drag after that. When you get to the anti-climactic climax you're just happy it's over. Part of the problem is that the characters are flat; they're really caricatures, not characters. You can only stretch a story with uninteresting characters so far before readers get bored. But, the flat characters are one of the things that makes the book funny at first. It's a good parody of all the bad apocalyptic movies and books, but then it goes on for way too long and turns into what it's parodying.
The word count is over 100k, probably nearing 120k, judging from the page count. Usually that kind of word count is for an epic or a sci-fi/fantasy novel (all that world building). Cutting this book down to 60-80k would have improved it dramatically, and honestly, it might have been better as a novella. As an author, you should learn to edit yourself, but the editor shouldn't have let the book go out like this. While I was disappointed with the book, the problem seems to lie primarily with the editor, so I would be willing to buy another book by this author.
But if you like Yahtzee Crowshaw, this isn't a bad book to have. I just can't gush over it like I did with Mogworld.
I think Yahtzee would be better off writing off-key short stories, sketch comedy, or even just shorter books. Mogworld would've been a great side-splitting read at 120 pages, but it was a chore at 350 pages. And I feel like Jam could've been a great title at 120 pages. But instead it rivals a Game of Thrones book in length and just doesn't have the detail or engagement to sustain that kind of interest. He needs an editor who is willing to run into this book with a hatchet and just cut away everything that doesn't need to be there.
So many people have jumped upon the apocalypse bandwagon, but it can be safely said that no potential apocalyptic event has ever been so voracious, sweet and "slightly strawberry scented."
Not many books have made me set it down because I was laughing out loud, but this one has several of those moments. If you are a fan of Yahtzee from The Escapist, it gets worse because you can't help but read the narrative in his voice. If you are not, give this a try anyway, because it is well worth it. Mogworld was good, but confusing if you aren't an MMO gamer. This one breaks out into the mainstream novels and is a thoroughly enjoyable read. So far the book has been handed around my office (now on the fifth person) and constant laughs abound.
Most recent customer reviews
All of the characers are well developed and interesting.Read more