Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Blackbirds by Chuck Wendig Review

Miriam Black knows when you are going to die. This is the tagline to this fun, dark, and violent urban fantasy by Chuck Wendig. I was excited about this book, because the concepts of psychics  intrigues me. People who can see into the future or read the thoughts of others.  A book with a psychic protagonist that is written by Chuck Wendig. Color me intrigued. Really this review is kind of pointless, because once you see that amazing cover art you will want to read it regardless of if it's good. Especially in a time where most book covers consist of angsty teenagers looking at the camera with a single dark color as background.

 As I said, the hero of the story is Miriam Black. A beautiful and damaged drifter who can see how anyone is going to die by touching them. At the beginning of the story she shakes the hand of a kind truck driver named Louis and sees that his death involves her. What follows is a dark, twisted ride that is a hell of a lot of fun.

The best part of the book is the protagonist Miriam Black. I fucking loved Miriam. She's smart, tough, and creatively foul-mouthed.  I would add sexy, but that's a pretty good description right there. Most importantly, though, she's deep.  She has a sympathetic and tragic back story which Wendig only reveals enough to inform you, but also leaves enough mystery to keep you interested. You get happy when she's happy. You cringe when she get's hurt, and she get's hurt. Miriam get's the shit beat out of her, but she always get's back up. That is the trait of a great hero, and Miriam is the hero of this story.You want to see her defy fate even though everything that has happened has said she can't

 The other characters were great, as well.  The gentle giant Louis, the mischievous Ashley, the intimidating Frankie and Harriet. The book has Wendig's signature writing style which is hilarious.  The atmosphere Wendig's writing creates is dark and mysterious.  It gives the reader a sense that anything is possible.

If I have to give a real criticism I would say that some of the different story elements don't seem to click. It feels like some of the characters were taken from a different story and placed in the book for convenience. Even with that said it still works.

Blackbirds was one hell of a ride. A dark, witty, violent, and creatively-foulmouthed adventure on the back of one awesome psychic. I really enjoyed this book. I loved the character of Miriam and can't wait for the sequel Mockingbird in August.

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