What a book!

August 27, 2010

Review: Blockade Billy

Blockade BillyBlockade Billy by Stephen King
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

An enjoyable non-horror-ish novella from Stephen King.

King is a baseball nut, but he doesn’t bog down the story in too much baseball detail. If you aren’t into the sport, you might feel a little disinterested, but, as usual, King drops enough juicy tidbits to keep you reading. And, as usual, King drops enough vulgar colloquialisms to keep you laughing throughout. You feel like you’re really listening to an old baseball codger in a rest home eager to talk to somebody about something, anything, as long as he doesn’t have to join the virtual bowling group.

I listened to this as an in-between-books book. It was short, light and fun. Craig Wasson is a great reader, although I felt his voice sounded a little too young for the character who was narrating. But it’s a minor quibble. He does a terrific job otherwise.

I did not listen to the other story in this edition, ‘Morality’, as I had read it when it was originally published in Esquire. I didn’t like it as much then and so was ready to move on to my next audio book.

View all my reviews


January 22, 2010

Myron Bolitar series by Harlan Coben

Filed under: Harlan Coben,Mystery,Sports — jacksheard @ 9:08 am
Tags: , , ,

Trying to pick one of this series would be mighty difficult. So I’ll just do the whole thing.

Harlan Coben’s series stars Myron Bolitar, a sports agent who solves mysteries for his clients.

He’s a jock. He’s a ladies man. He’s a smart ass.

He’s cool.

He’s a lot of things I fancy myself as, so I love reading about him.

The books all have a sports theme of some sort. Here’s a quick rundown:

“Deal Breaker” (football)

“Drop Shot” (tennis, U.S. Open)

“Fade Away” (basketball, with the Celtics)

“Back Spin” (golf)

“One False Move” (basketball)

“The Final Detail” (baseball, with the Yankees)

“Darkest Fear” (no particular sport, more mystery)

“Promise Me” (again, less sports, more mystery)

“Long Lost” (international thriller!)

Through the course of these novels, Myron and his friends (one a former female wrestler and another an ass-kicking martial arts snob) go from sports mysteries with clients and problems with mobsters to parenthood, dealing with aging parents, struggling through relationships and — most of all — crazy situations.

One early annoyance is fake professional team names, but that gets rectified in the third book when he starts using real teams.

Coben has an amazing ability to mix suspense and thrilling mystery with a slice of humor that keeps Myron seeming real, despite his resume: Duke basketball star, Harvard law school, stint with the Celtics, sports agent and international superdetective.

And his favorite drink: Yoo-Hoo.

YOU’LL LIKE THIS SERIES IF: You’re a sports fan and like reading mysteries. Also, if you’re tired of mystery novels with the same tired cast of characters and detectives.

Series gets five stars out of five.

Link to Harlan Coben site

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