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Point and Shoot (Charlie Hardie Novels) Paperback – April 30, 2013

4.2 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews
Book 3 of 3 in the Charlie Hardie Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Charlie Hardie has had a rough time since he encountered the Accident People (Fun and Games, 2011), who happen to make up the evilest of all evil cabals. World domination is their goal, if only no-account ex-cop Charlie would quit buzzing around their operation like a pesky mosquito. You’ll recall Charlie escaped from an inescapable subterranean prison in the second in the series, Hell and Gone (2011), and went looking for the cabal’s head honchos. That didn’t work out so well, and, by book’s end, Charlie was back in captivity. This time, though, rather being imprisoned far below ground, he’s locked up in a satellite orbiting 500 miles above the earth. That’s weird enough, to be sure, but matters take an even weirder turn when Charlie receives a visitor in space—himself. Well, not really himself, but a double who claims to be from the government, on a mission to save Charlie. Over the top? Of course, but Swierczynski uses his comics background to fine effect here, blending Flash Gordon, Dick Tracy, and a touch of Jim Thompson into a pulpy brew that’s far more fun than it has any right to be. --Bill Ott

Review

"Excessive [and] delirious ... Hardie's entertaining struggles with the killer cabal known as 'the accident people' literally levitate a notch."―Los Angeles Times

"Frenetic prose...Readers are in for a wild and immensely enjoyable ride."―Publishers Weekly

"The action sequences are killer. I could esily see these books as a major summer blockbuster."―Wired.com

"A much-needed breath of fresh air in the book world."―Michael Connelly
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Product Details

  • Series: Charlie Hardie Novels
  • Paperback: 255 pages
  • Publisher: Mulholland Books; Original edition (April 30, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316133302
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316133302
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #791,750 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

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The first in this series, Fun & Games, was a fun, clever, wild ride -- the wacky characters (Unkillable Chuck, Deke, and Mann) were a kick, and the crazy imaginative story makes it a page-turner! But this book is none of that!

Of course, if you're looking at purchasing this book, perhaps you've already read the first two -- if so, all you need to know is this third book is like the 2nd (Hell and Gone). If you like the 2nd, you'll like the third.

On the other hand, if you're like me and thought the 2nd book was terrible, you will not like the third either. Save your time and money for another book!
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Unputdownable. It's not a literal term. Otherwise we would be walking around covered in books, which would make it kinda difficult to eat, sleep, and, well, do just about anything.

But...

Figuratively speaking, Duane Swierczynski's Point & Shoot definitely fits the bill.

Picking up exactly where Hell & Gone left off, the latest Charlie Hardie adventure is a rocketing thrill ride of non-stop craziness.

Fun & Games (the first Charlie Hardie book) was a fast paced thriller.

Hell & Gone (book number two) was an action packed mind game.

Point & Shoot...well, Point & Shoot is a bizarro, buddy road tripping, action adventuring, identity swapping, serial killering, conspiracy filled masterpiece.

As always, Swierczynski's writing is as sharp as a scalpel. With just a few words, he is able to bring each character to life. The dialogue crackles, and the action bursts from the page in a cloud of gun powder and blood. (Again, I'm speaking figuratively. Literally, well, that would be rather gross.)

For anyone looking for a well written, thrilling, breathtaking story, I highly recommend Point & Shoot. I do suggest you read the first two books. Not just to get the whole story, but because they are all fantastic fiction.
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Like many of Duane Swierczynski's readers I was disappointed when the publication date for Point and Shoot was pushed back. Now it's here and it was well worth the wait.

The story begins with Charlie trying desperately to save his family from the promised violence of The Cabal. He agrees to enter a year of servitude in which he will ride around the earth in a low-orbit satellite. Months into that process something unexpected occurs. A person (SPOILER ALERT) who looks exactly like Charlie arrives at the satellite, tells him that the satellite contains information that would destroy The Cabal and urges Charlie to work with him to: a) find the information chip; and b) take the satellite out of its orbit and land off the coast of California. From there, presumably, Charlie and `Charlie' will make their way back to the east coast to: a) save Charlie's wife and son in Philadelphia; and b) use the material on the information chip to expose the machinations of The Cabal and bring them to utter, complete and final ruin.

This plan is `followed' though with surprises galore, including the location of the chip and its ultimate contents. Along the way we will see old friends (such as Deke Clark) and enemies (such as the `director' who goes by the name of Mann). Not all of them are going to make it to the final reel.

I do not want to reveal any more of the plot. Suffice to say that it is satisfying and a fit end for the trilogy. As to larger issues: Duane Swierczynski may just be the most inventive writer working this terrain. His trilogy is a blend of crime fiction, thriller, sci-fi and action/adventure. His settings are fresh and fully realized; his characters are memorable; his language is hip and current and cool.
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The author is well known for plot lines that are, well...imaginative? Hallucinatory? Insane?

But they're always well written and well plotted. He may be the crime writer's rough equivalent of Hunter S. Thompson back in his heyday, but unlike HST, you always could see a lot of writer's discipline hiding beneath the chaotic mayhem.

Then came the three novels about poor Charlie Hardie. Well, really three books and one story, with each book melting into the next so seamlessly if there weren't book covers, you couldn't tell where one ended and the next picked up.

Each of these books started up briskly and then floored the action. By the end of the second book, I though the third would be a disaster because no one could pull all the various threads of Fun and Games and Hell and Gone back together credibly.

Heck, I even thought that with 50 pages to go in this book.

And then he pulled it off, to my amazement. He even leaves us a little dangling thread at the end.

As I look back on these three books, the plot scope is just amazing. If you like very fast, but tight plotting, imagination run wild, and unlimited amounts of adrenaline, you'll love these books. And I encourage you to try some of his others. They're stand alones, but each one is very good. Swierczynski has more imagination in some of his chapters than most writers have in a life time of writing.

Be sure to read this fine series in order.
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