Review: Weapons

Weapons: A King And Slater Thriller

weaponscover

When I got Weapons by Matt Rogers, I didn’t really get that it was a merging of two series’ with entries in their own right. So I was a little confused at first, not helped by a slow start. Thankfully, once the story picked up, I got a huge wave of cheap thriller action. This isn’t exactly a standout cheap thriller by any means, and it has flaws.

One of the biggest is the variable competence of the characters. This book acts like a more grounded thriller until the moment the heroes are backed into a corner, at which point they gain, among other things, incredible aiming ability. It also has a mundane cheap thriller plot with my usual quibbles.

But the actual action is still well-done in spite of these issues, and that’s what a cheap thriller needs to be. You could do a lot worse if you want a basic explosive thriller.

Review: Retribution

Retribution: A Team Reaper Thriller

teamreaper

Brent Towns’ Retribution is the inaugural book in the Team Reaper series, intended as a modern continuation of classic action-adventure novels. Here, the titular team forms and battles a Mexican drug cartel, along with its crooked political allies.

This is not high literature by any means and takes its time getting going. I felt the early pacing was slightly sluggish, though not nearly enough to really hurt the book overall…

…especially since the main pacing, once the action really starts, is excellent. As is the action itself. This is an unashamed homage to classic action adventure fiction and works very well at recreating the feel of the genre. The action is good, and that’s what matters in a book like this.

Retribution is a book that I recommend for anyone who likes classic action novels.

Review: Battle Front (USA VS Militia)

Ian Slater’s Battle Front spun the 90s Technothriller Opponent Selector Wheel and it landed on “Militias”. While Slater has written some proper World War III novels, this is my first introduction  to him.

Who and What

Now, it wasn’t until sometime in that I found out this was one of the middle books in a five-book series. That explained some of the confusion, but I wasn’t that lost before. There is a Second American Civil War between the federal government and right-wing militias who are both cartoonishly racist puppy kickers and far more competent than they would have any right to be. On the federal government’s side is main character General Mary Sue-I mean, Douglas Freeman.

Now, the book kind of rambles and jumps around, but what was interesting (and good) to me was how it didn’t feel like an axe-grinding polemic. Nor did it feel like a parody either. It takes this crazy setup and plays it completely, sometimes boringly straight. Normally I’d praise a book for not being too political, but it just feels strange. Maybe it’s that the non-American Slater didn’t have a feel for American politics, but that doesn’t explain all of it.

DEEP HISTORY OF TEM

The book can get kind of infodumpy and it never seems to enter full gritty story mode. Furthermore, a lot of the infodumps are strange and frequently inaccurate (for example, one used ‘TOW’ as a generic term for anti-tank rounds. Not even missiles, rounds).

Zombie Sorceresses

The zombie sorceresses made American militias number in the hundreds of thousands, be unified, and be competent. The latter part required the most zombie sorceress intervention.

Tank Booms

The action is mostly dull and somewhat infodumpy, but it gets the occasional ridiculous moment, like how the evil militia are preternaturally competent (to drive the plot) and the ridiculous stuff like over-effective reactive armor (except it’s described as if it was inert add-on armor) on pickup trucks.

The Only Score That Really Matters

This book is about 5-10% crazy goofy, and about 90-95% dull tedium. Yet I’m a sucker for even a little bit of crazy goofiness. A lot of other readers might not be.