Tuesday, 8 October 2013

The Heist by Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg

Kate O'Hare's favorite outfit was her blue windbreaker with the letters FBI written in yellow on the back, worn over a basic black T-shirt and matching black Kevlar vest.

This would hook if it were true: a girl who goes on dates wearing a Kevlar vest. But we learn quickly that this is actually just her work outfit, meaning she's an FBI agent and she just likes her job uniform. The authors use a bit of the tongue-in-cheek literary device to hook, only to fall flat with the punchline: the "ha-ha, made you look" technique.

Next line:

The ensemble went well with everything, particularly when paired with jeans and accessorized with a Glock.

With everything? I'd love to see her in her Kevlar vest and bikini at the beach or in bed in her PJ's.

What follows are some cardboard characters engulfed in a scene bursting with active verbs pumped up on steroids: blew past, pushed past (like a guided missile), yelped, stunned, fanned out, slapped (a piece of paper down), locking (her intense blue eyes), until we are finally saved with some back story that begins: eighteen hours earlier...

First thing said:

"Don't shoot."

I know this will titillate sheeple, but seriously if you read at least a book a week, this style of writing stinks, as if it were regurgitated by TV, perhaps once belonging to an 80's episode of the A-Team. It will certainly hook the one-book-a-year club, sadly keeping them reading at least something so their withering brains never entirely atrophy, but for everyone else who actually enjoys reading more than watching TV this opening fails.

However, early, by the second page, some story begins to emerge, which keeps this opening from being a total write-off.

Nevertheless, I stop reading. I will wait for the computer game version.

Verdict: Fail

Rudy Globird

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