Thursday, 16 April 2009

Kirkus Reviews

I was flicking through the various sites where my debut book is on sale and came across this review of DMD by Kirkus Reviews - very influential book reviewers and often quoted on dust jackets. The first and last sentences both gave me pause to think Hmmmm? However the rest of the review says exactly what you get in the tin. Thought I'd share it with you and see what you think.

My feelings were: some semblance of a plot. That's good, at least there's some semblance.
Buckets of gore, not enough nuance to fill a thimble. I'll take the buckets of gore thank you very much.

What do you think? Answers on a new fifty pound note or you can simply leave a comment.

Kirkus Reviews
A debut thriller about an action hero in search of his brother and some semblance of a plot. Joe Hunter, ex-Special Forces agent and ex-cop, trained within an inch of his life, has survived a million rounds of hand-to-hand combat. He's earned a doctorate in lethal. Now a private-security consultant, he regards himself as a problem solver, though others might call him a vigilante. Either way, he's a hard man and not everyone likes him. At the moment Jennifer Tilfer, his sister-in-law, is prominent among his detractors because her husband, Joe's younger half-brother, has decamped, and she holds Joe responsible. When John needed his help, he withheld it, she insists, causing her man to flee from the bottom-feeders who hold his markers. Not exactly, says Joe. He had indeed come up with the cash, but John, a ne'er-do-well with a big-time gambling problem, blew it all on one more last-ditch, get-even effort. Be that as it may, Joe's imperative now is clearly inescapable. With his brother on the lam and his sister-in-law and her kids in the lurch, he has no choice but to locate John and set things right. From the North of England to Little Rock, Ark., and eventually to California, Joe follows feckless John, who's immersed himself in the mother of all messes. Enter the Harvestman, a serial killer with more than 20 deaths, several of them gruesomely described, to his credit. Having incurred his displeasure, John is in serious danger of being harvested by the time the brothers reconnect. So what happens? Joe slays the bad guys and the Harvestman acts out his psychopathology. There's not much else in the way of story until the obligatory climactic duel, in which the antagonists attempt to dismembereach other. Buckets of gore, not enough nuance to fill a thimble.

By the way, the book still gets a five star ranking at Barnes and Noble where the review appears. See link below.


Col Bury said...

This person was obviously heavily into nuances, maybe even obsessed. I hope the search for the elusive nuance didn't detract from the critic's enjoyment of the actual story itself.
Millions of readers round the world crave the all action rollercoaster ride that, from what I've gathered so far, DMDs provides.
Maybe I don't mix in the right circles, but I can't EVER recall ANYONE EVER while chatting about books they've read saying, 'Nah, that book's not for me - not enough nuances for my liking!'

Matt Hilton said...

my thoughts exactly - nuances are for the literary set are they not my good man?

But hey, the rest of the review is cool. Buckets of blood, Mmmm! (read the last in a Homer Simpson voice).

Matt Hilton said...

Oh, and by the way, another reviewer as you may recall said that the book was nuanced - it's only down to personal opinions after all.

Pat R. said...

My opinion is it is a great book and has a good storyline which I enjoyed. Kirkus doesn't always get it right but it is great just to get the review. Not all books merit a review by Kirkus so that is a plus.

Matt Hilton said...

Thanks Pat, you're right about the books reviewed by Kirkus, so I do feel good about it being featured. I was/am happy with the review - which was why I posted it - and simply found the lead in and lead out sentences slightly humorous. Reviews I guess are very personal and individual after all and different people will get something different from the reading of the book.

Pat R. said...

Chris Grabenstein recently posted on Dorothy L. about the review of his new book - not a very good one - one of the responses was "at least you got a Kirkus review" and I think that is how you have to look at it.

Matt Hilton said...

I will. Confidence renewed. ;)