Tuesday, February 12, 2013

What I'm Reading - Blackbirds by Chuck Wendig

I had every intention of reading Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion this week, but then I picked up Blackbirds by Chuck Wendig, and it grabbed by the throat and wouldn't let me go. In a good way, of course.

First off, this.
Linking to B&N this week because Amazon's pissing me off with its "used e-books" shenanigans. 
(Here's Wendig himself discussing said tomfoolery on his blog. I also recommend following this link through to his post on piracy. My views on the subject basically falling into the category of "What He Said.")

Back to Blackbirds -- sweet fancy Moses, that's an amazing cover! It's the sort of cover I covet, the sort of cover that, even I had started reading the book and hated it, would have brought me back to try to love it again and again.

To be clear, I definitely try not to judge books by their covers. After all, I am a fantasy and sf reader, and that genre has some doozies.

What in the name of Abe Vigoda's eyebrows could Sid Ursus be pondering?
(See many more amazing covers here.)

That being said, I find I am more willing to put down a book with a so-so cover. From what I understand, authors have little to no input on their book covers, especially their first book cover. That being said, the people who worry about these kinds of things are people with publishing contracts, so at this point it's a problem I hope to have one day.

As for the book itself, sweet fancy Moses is this an awesome book! It's about Miriam Black, a young woman who, when she touches someone skin-to-skin, knows the exact when and wherefore of their deaths. But unlike other heroines who might use this ability to try and help people, Miriam simply struggles to survive, recognizing her "gift" for the curse it truly is.

Miriam is, of course, severely broken, but she's also whip-smart and brash and she can, and will, beat the shit out of anyone who puts a hand on her. A large part of her is resigned to her hellish fate, but there's too much fight in her to really contain it. She's the sort of strong, complex heroine I love to love. Add to that the vivid descriptions, clever dialogue, and swift pacing, and you've got yourself one hell of a book.

Mockingbird, the second book in the projected trilogy, is sitting on my Kindle now, just waiting to kidnap this coming weekend, and by God, I have every intention of letting it.

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