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Mr Bible brings us Asheville as we've not seen it before. A veritable smorgasbord of the supernatural combines with the author's special blend of snark.. It's fast paced, dramatic, often hair-raising, a really enjoyable book.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful
On an Earth where a paranormal event described only as "The Happening" allows for 2-way (or more) dimensional travel, beings and locations from myth, folklore, paranormal sightings, and even religious writings are explained away as actually being visitors from, or peeks into other dimensions that some ignorant human just had to go and tell everybody about. So in this new world where a monster from a horror movie could be sitting at the next table over from you in a restaurant, or a wrong step in a pothole could send you to a frozen wasteland, "normal" changes from minute to minute. This also gives the author carte blanche to call upon or make up anyone, anywhere, anywhen.
Black Box Inc. is actually a team of unlikely friends, all with their own specialties and proclivities. They essentially offer a safety deposit box, and sometimes transport service to their clients for the right price. This team that has obviously done many jobs in the past bickers like family as they try to keep their business afloat. Their language and gestures are sometimes crude and profane, and the places they visit range from the gruesomely violent to the pornographically immodest. Luckily although the audience is made aware of these details, it is never graphic enough or overly-emphasized enough to overwhelm the story as a whole.
The main character Chase Lawter from who's point of view the story is told is the classic lovable scoundrel with a heart of gold... almost. He is at the same time both lucky enough that one minute trouble slides off of him and he seems like he can think, talk or charm his way out of anything, and then unlucky enough that the next minute trouble is chewing him up and getting drool all over him. This makes the Narrator's ability to go from smooth confident leader to "why me?" in an instant perfect for the character.
There are many events in this book which come full circle. On top of that there are many times when Chase arrives at or wakes up in unfamiliar locations such that the audience must wait for further details and context to be revealed before the scene starts to make sense. Because of this the reader/listener has to pay careful attention to details as well as remember everything from where they left off when taking a break or they'll get lost and have to backtrack to get re-acquainted with important details.
Due to the dimensional open-ended-ness of the setting as well as the established but unexplored past of the Black Box Inc. team along with their future prospects there is a great deal of room for this series to grow and I'm looking forward to the next installment.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful
Chase, top man in a team of equals, has a very clever trick. He can form a box, a black box the right size to take anything, and having filled it, he folds it away where it cannot be seen, found or unlocked again by anyone but him. A surprisingly useful service, don't you think? But dangerous when clients were just a teeny bit unreliable.
Another imaginative creation from Jake Bible, filled with crazy people and even more seriously crazy situations. Read, as always, with panache by J.Scott Bennett, the story flies into life with his narration, well paced and elegant intonation. Great team work of author and narrator.
A fun read for anyone who enjoys a taste of the ridiculous wrapped up in an adventure. Certainly better than a severed head - that always ruins a good meal.