Fire and Ash by Jonathan Maberry
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Fire and Ash. This latest installment is feeling both new and old to me. Old, because it’s basically the same thing happening… or at least a variation of the same thing they’d previously faced…hell, a continuation? Yes that’s it. It feels like there’s little growth that’s taken place. it just picks right up from where Brother John’s left things.
In the first three books, its all Benny and Nix and, even, Chong… seeing the world through older eyes; here, they’re definitely older and making not one or two preachy statements of if I were in charge, easy statements to make but lacking in something more substantial for me. There’s that thing where fault is laid elsewhere and it’s simply them dealing with the outcome. I liked that and didn’t. It’s an obvious feeling to be rooting for the good guys coming out on top given the bad bad situations they’re all in, but it’s the same that had me wondering if that was all there was to it: older people screwing things up for the younger people to get through? It’s stated over and over, I tell you.
Now, it’s the smaller relationships in this one that had me continuing. I looked forward to every bit of Benny and Nix seeing more of who they were for each other. I especially loved Chong and his unconventional girl. (though if one thinks more on them, there’s really not that much unconventional to geeky kid and tough girl falling for each other. That’s been done to death as well, no?) But it was cute and added the needed humor without which this installment may have become a rehash, a been there and done that of book three.
Also, am I the only one feeling let down on the path that Tom Imura’s memory has gone? The first book had me and the rest of the people in the book hero-worshipping the guy. Because he simply was that good. Second book, and I’m a little fuzzy on the time line here folks, had me DEVASTATED over events relating to him. The third book had me happy for mentions of him… then wondering where the author was bringing things. But this one has me slightly upset, because there’s a new Tom Imura feeling character in town… and I thought it was going to be Benny. Only not. So now… I’m bummed out.
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