Blood Brothers (Dallas Barnes)
Not to be confused with the Black Eagle Force book of the same name I reviewed previously, Dallas Barnes’ Blood Brothers is the tale of Native Americans, casinos, and underworld intrigue. It’s also the book that, because of its subject matter, has highlighted the inherent differences between me as a writer and me as a critic.
Now the book itself is a 51% potboiler in a genre I’m not the most interested in. Yes, it’s full of cliches and doesn’t make the best use of them, but it’s also competently written. That’s what a 51% book is, basically. What separates it is the element that makes up the bulk of the plot, beyond the opening “publicity stunt gone wrong” incident that drives it.
See, it’s about the struggle to build a casino. Now the reader in me was thinking “is this really the best plot for a thriller? Something as low-stakes [no pun intended] and not really that economically beneficial as a casino?” But the writer in me went “Well, uh, you made an entire book where one of the main plots was about the establishment of an online casino. Clearly you thought it would be a a suitable plot point.”
I’ve said before that I don’t think being a critic has made me a better writer, but do think that being a writer has made me a better critic. This book is an interesting specific example of that. The critic part of me doesn’t think that highly, while the writer part of me can understand.