Monday, September 10, 2012

SM Johnson ~ Bloody Monday ~ Finder(s) keepers

Good morning, darlings. Hope your week is starting out well.

I had a goofy morning last week. Not exactly an "if anything can go wrong, it will" day, but more like if anything else delays me from leaving this house, I'm going to be late for work. But it's not like the coffee maker overflowed and dripped ground-filled water everywhere, or that the hot water was glitchy, or that my scrubs were still wet in the dryer - so basically, I'm saying it could have been a lot worse.

The cat sneaked out the door while I was fastening the dog to her chain. (And yes, "sneaked out" is grammatically correct, even though "snuck out" sounds much better).

And while I was sitting there pondering how I was going to coax him back inside, I realized the part of the dog chain that clips to the dog's collar was sitting on the ground by my feet. With no dog in sight.

So I was like, "Oh, shit! I've lost all of our animals at once. Nice job, mama."

I went inside and grabbed a cup of joe. Then I went back out and sat on the porch, and whistled for the dog (which never works, by the way).

Then I was ever so surprised. The CAT bounded out of the bushes and came right to me, twining around my calves and doing the meow-purr that he does, the one that makes him sound grateful and aggravated at the same time.

I think it's actually his "please give me more food" vocalization. Which, I guess, could surely contain elements of grateful aggravation.

But anyway, I was going to talk about Finder, not losing things.

Author Joseph Finder, to be more specific.

See, I found this discussion on Goodreads and it was a sort of "I love Lee Child and Jack Reacher, what else do you think I'd like?" kind of question.

And there was a whole slew of recommendations, many of them books and authors I haven't read. So I was pretty much... rubbing my hands together with glee and creating a list in Word to talk to my library, because I can't get enough of Jack Reacher. And since I believe Child still writes his own books (rather than going corporate and having a team do the writing), there is some waiting for the next Reacher installment to be released.

Damn it. I hate waiting.

The best thing a reader can do while waiting is... read. And it's nice to have a place to start.

I read a Bob Swagger (character) book by Stephen Hunter, and the story was good, but the dialogue was weird and stilted, and bothered me.

So next on my list was Joseph Finder. I read Power Play. Well... it blew me away. I stayed up into the wee hours of the morning, because there was no way I was going to bed before finishing this book.

The main character was Jake Landry, and the author did a great job of giving Jake the past experiences and unusual skill-set that he needed to get through a really tough situation.

Finder also used an interesting flashback technique, that wove Jake's past experiences into the narrative. I won't say they were woven in seamlessly - you knew you were going into a flashback, there was no subtlety about that - and the flashbacks were non-linear, but they were interesting. They followed two different story lines - Jake's rocky childhood and adolescence, and his adult relationship with ex-girlfriend, Ali. And since Ali is a current character in the main story line, their history together raises the stakes in the current badness going on, and definitely gets the reader rooting for Jake.

Actually, I started rooting for Jake at the beginning of the book, when he gave a second chance to someone who deserved to be fired. That whole scene sets us up to like Jake, who's a down-to-earth guy who has a good sense of human nature, and even though he may be brilliant, he doesn't shove his brilliance in other people's faces.

I just started reading another Finder book, called Paranoia. Not altogether sure where it's headed, but I can hardly wait to find out.

So okay, I'll say it... fans of Lee Child will probably like Joseph Finder.

Have a great week, darlings!

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