Saturday, June 9, 2012
Dead Reckoning (review)
Dead Reckoning was a fun little read. As soon as we met Jett, a girl dressed up as a gunslinging cowboy searching for her lost brother, I knew this was going to be entertaining. I'm a sucker for a girl dressing as a boy to make her way in the world.
This book wasn't great. But it is a steampunk zombie Western that's fairly good and I'm okay with that. Jett Gallatin, gunslinger, confederate sympathizer, and a girl (who misses pretty dresses!) is my type of heroine. She's not ridiculously intelligent or good looking. Instead, she's determined and brave. She's looking for her twin brother who went missing after the Civil War. She would do anything to find and protect him. That's why she's dressed as a man. It's not because she hats being a girl, though she's not such a fan of corsets anymore, but that she loves her brother. Jett is the heart of this book.
This book has some pretty big flaws. The worst is it's tendency to tell rather than show which frustrated me. Give your readers some credit. They can make connections without the characters explaining them. Also this book is told in 3rd person, jumping between Jett, Gibbons and White Fox's point of views. Honestly this felt like a mistake. Probably 80% of the book follows Jett's POV. Her's is the most fleshed out and compelling. Jumping to Gibbon's and White Fox's felt a little lazy. With a little more effort the book could've stayed with Jett. The problem with telling, rather than showing, was also more prevalent in the other point of views.
At the end, the book left some threads hanging and Gibbon's blatantly said she thought the characters would see each other again (really telling and not showing, again. Her character is the worst for it). I might like the idea of this book more than the execution. Nonetheless I want to read the sequel mainly because I want to find out what happened to Jett's brother, a mystery the story leaves dangling. If you see this book and you're in the mood for a steampunk zombie western, I'd give it a try.