Fun & Games Book Review
Thriller is a genre but how many of those books actually thrill?
Duane Swierczynski has quickly become a master of crafting books you never want to put down until you’ve gotten to the last page. Then you finish that last page and you don’t know whether to sigh, grab a beer, or hunt the author down. There are no wasted moments in a Swierczynski book, there are only thrills.
Fun & Games is a terribly fun book to read. The entire ride is like the great middle part of an action movie. We step into the business as it’s going down and it continues to go down, and down, and even further down. This is where Swierczynski builds his trade, he does not let up. His narrative is relentless in its pursuit to crush its characters. It’s a noir sensibility through a very heavily action oriented application and delivery method. Things are never good, they might cease bring bad for a moment but that’s only to set up to make things worse. And yet none of that means this is a depressing book, quite the contrary. Fun & Games is an adrenaline ride where you grip on tight and enjoy every trusted turn.
The hero of the piece, Charlie Hardie, is an interesting guy. He has a cop background and he’s a reluctant hero. It kind of feels like we’ve seen it before but he still commands the page well. He’s an everyman who is definitely likable. He’s straight out of a Gold Medal paperback.
The situation Hardie finds himself in is pretty cool. It’s about a group of cleaners who make incidents disappear, no matter what it takes. It’s pretty much the same situation Randy Quaid found himself in not that long ago, ha. Hardie is lumped with the task of helping a starlet caught up as a target.
This book is slated as the first in a trilogy. By the time you finish this book you will know it. This is kind of like the first act of a very long story. This book has its own arc, and it foes resolve, but the ending leaves you wanting to go straight into the next book. That’s probably the intention and it works.
This is pulp action. It’s not exactly hard boiled, it’s just action packed. But unlike most action flicks, this one is also loaded with character. During the book, the 70s Gene Hackman is referenced and that perfectly encapsulated the vibe of it all. This is a 70s Hackman flick directed by John Milius.
I read this book in four days – it was perfect for a holiday break. I stole every moment I could to get into these pages and now I’m left hanging for the next installment. It cannot come fast enough.
Posted on October 13th, 2011 by ryan
Filed under: books