Pursuit of Honor, The Broker, Hanging Garden, after the quake

Blogging through public computers is hard. Okay, it actually isn’t all that hard, it just takes a bit more effort than regular blogging, but writing on public computers where just about anyone can walk past you and read along is hard. I like to keep my writing private. At least, until I’ve looked over it enough to share it with others.

So you’ll have to bear with me for now, until I get a computer of my own again. For now, let’s look at 4 more books I’ve read during the last month. It’ll probably be about 2 or 3 more posts before we’ve finally caught up to what I’m reading now.

pursuit of honor

Pursuit of Honor by Vince Flynn

A massive surprise in a lot of ways, and none of them good. Through most of the book I was expecting a clever line to be drawn between the moral codes of the protagonist, Mitch Rapp, an American secret service agent, and the terrorist group he’s hunting.

Rapp has absolutely no problem abducting, torturing, and killing anyone he feels is a threat to the safety of his country, including his own countrymen. Meanwhile, one of the evil Al Qaeda terrorists tries to avoid killing innocents, loves western technology for all its uses, and even enjoys American literature!

Unfortunately, nothing even close to that clever happened. Rapp’s the good guy, saving America from terrorism and filthy liberals. And the terrorists are all evil foreigners yelling at each other over mobile phones.

The biggest surprise came in the fact that this is a series. There’s more than one book. I’m kind of shocked there’s an audience intelligent enough to read these novels, but not intelligent enough to see through them.

the broker

The Broker by John Grisham

The second time Grisham gave me a positive surprise. Last time I came across a copy of The Partner for free. With nothing else around me to read at the time, I ended up going through it, enjoying it more than I thought I would. I got The Broker in pretty much the same way, and again, it was a really enjoyable read.

A famous broker who had unequaled power political power in Washington came across something dangerous enough for him to admit to a long series of crimes without issue so he can escape to prison. After years in solitary confinement, the president, resigning from his position, gives him a full pardon, putting him out in the free world again. Everyone is watching him, expecting one group or another to kill him soon, hoping that it’ll help them uncover just exactly what it was that he feared so much to escape it all the way to jail.

Claustrophobic enough to give the same feel, but a lot more character focused than The Partner was. Really great read.

The Hanging Garden Ian Rankin

Hanging Garden by Ian Rankin

A detective investigating an old WW2 case while trying to keep two crime lords, one he put in prison, and a new one still out on the streets, from fighting an all out territorial war. It was okay as a one-time read, but obviously part of a long-running series which placed all these characters involved into their respective positions. As they are, they just didn’t interest me enough to read more about them.

Not a bad book, it just felt a bit weak and stretched out. Like it was trying to juggle too many plot threads from previous books and push them in too many directions by brief mentions to set up later books.

after the quake murakami

After the Quake by Haruki Murakami

Bit of a let down. So far this was the least interesting of Murakami’s books that I’ve read. Maybe it’s because his short stories don’t do much for me. Reading through all the stories, they started to blend together. Almost all of them had the same feeling of melancholy, all except the last story, which seemed a bit too self-aware of itself.

A story about a lonely writer of depressing short stories, ending in him finding happiness and deciding to write more uplifting short stories with more positive endings as a final story in a collection of short stories about loneliness. With many jabs about the lack of popularity of the short story along the way.

It just didn’t do it for me. Maybe next time I’ll just read a full novel again.

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