Monday, November 25, 2013

Just Read it and Thank Me Later: A Review of J. Fally's Bone Rider

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So I've been goofing off this past week instead of pulling together another piece of stupefying brilliance for my article series, so I thought instead I'd give you a little Thanksgiving gift in the form of a book recommendation, a new book by a new author,  Bone Rider by J. Fally.  Here's a copy of my Goodreads Gushfest... er, Review.  

What's the word I want? Fantastic? Stupendous? Expialadocious? None of them will do this justice. I'm not sure I'm up to a full review on this, so I'll stick to a few of the things I most admired about this book:

It is totally original. The premise and the development toss every cliche out the truck window. I've never read a story like this.

It is a total thrill ride--the plotting is just unfuckingbelievably awesome. The reference to Die Hard is no exaggeration: J. Fally can write an action sequence--make that about 19 action sequences. It's a roller coaster thrill ride, without, I'm not kidding, a single lame or dull moment in it.

The Capital H's: Hilarious and Hot.

It has... I really don't have a word here for the characters. The book features a good half dozen major perspectives and a host of secondary characters, EACH AND EVERY ONE OF WHICH is treated with respect. There are no cheap shots, cheap stereotypes, cheap villains. Strictly speaking, there are no villains at all, though there is plenty of conflict and there are adversaries. I used the word "respect": this is an author who respects her characters enough to look at why they act the way they do, treating their choices with what I'll have to call compassionate understanding--that sounds too sentimental for the actual effect, but it's the best I can do. When you realize that this is a story about government special-ops soldiers in hot pursuit of an alien they are desperately trying to kill, you will realize how goddamn many cliches Fally does not fall into here. The closest comparison I have is to Dani Alexander, another author who avoids villains, even when her characters do evil things.

Bottom line: Christmas has come early. This is a far better gift than anything you'll find on Black Friday. You've been given a great gift here, people, so read it and enjoy it, and then read it again. That's my plan for the holiday weekend.

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