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'Nightlife' by Rob Thurman (new author) (1 Viewer)

Rob is a new author, 'Nightlife' being his very first book to be put out on the shelves (or at least that's what I was told before borrowing the book; there hasn't been any information that counters that belief). He has the wit and sarcasm speaking through his characters that very much reminded me of the fabulous Dante from Capcom's Devil May Cry video game.

Cal, the main character (and the one that speaks through first person throughout the book), is on the run from pure hell. His whole life was created only for a darker ulterior purpose, and now his creators (including 'daddy') are slinking out of the darkness to take him back; because they have a plan that will throw the entire world back into chaos; for their benefit of course. So what do you do when beasties with red eyes and some nice dental work are stalking you? Move a lot, keep a gun with you, and have a brother that has the ability of whooping a lot of butt - and who's life goal is to keep you alive.

The book itself started out wonderfully, the sarcastic tone coming through Rob's words keeping me highly entertained while I learned about Cal's background and where he currently was. Cal is a loveable bad-ass, and his brother is the strong, silent, intelligent, deadly type that I love - two brothers that have such different personalities, yet are glued at the hip. Action is soon to start, and after meeting a few more characters that the boys have met (including the toothy shadows), you soon realize that there is a lot that could screw them over. I can't give too much away about the storyline, but be sure that there are a few events that turn things a little sticky. It was a very enjoyable read, good for a first book, and I would be interested to see what his next one will offer.

On constructive criticism, I'd say that even though Rob started out very strongly and had a bucket-ful of potential going for him, it felt as if he let the handle slip out of his fingers. It was still a good book once I got about 1/3 of the way through, but from my reading experience, there was so much more that he could have done. The first person perspective really limited what the reader could experience, and there was a lot that was informed to us later that, if seen on a direct level through one of the other characters, could make the whole story more dramatic. If you analyzed, you would realize that possible angst and depth were missed through sticking with one character, and that may have taken a good chunk of brownie points from the book.

The storyline also was rather plain once half-mark came along in the pages. The wit still kept you hooked (and for me, the love of the characters), but the events that happened were just sort of predictable, making it so that I started pondering what else could have happened to make it better. No disrespect to Rob or anything, but if he had planned a bit more, tantalyzing and teasing every possible idea until he reached a better endpoint, the outcome may have been better.

But don't let that criticism dissuade you. 'Nightlife' was truly a good book when looked at as a whole, and one that I have already thought back on multiple times when things happen in real life ("That was such a Cal thing to do," "That really reminds me of Meredith -start laughing-" (you'd get that when you read the book)). He makes his characters stand off the page and smack you in the face, forcing you to accknowledge their existence so that you come to love, adore, and appreciate them - no matter what happens. So for a spunky and action-filled ride, pick up 'Nightlife' and dive right into it.
 

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