Posts Tagged ‘Crouch’

I’m back, suckahs!

And I’m back with my review of Blake Crouch’s latest novel:  WAYWARD.

I was lucky enough to get a chance to do a first read for this novel, courtesy of Mr. Crouch and his publishing company.  WAYWARD is the next installment of his WAYWARD PINES series.  At this point it seems as if he will be going the trilogy route with this one.  Which is fine by me. 

WAYWARD takes place right after the events of PINES, in which our main character Ethan Burke learns the truth of Wayward Pines.  If you wish to learn about said secret, please pick up PINES by Blake Crouch.  Do it!  Now!  So WAYWARD begins with Ethan thrust into his new role as Sheriff of Wayward Pines.  And man, does he hate his job.  I mean most people are irked about their job, but this guy is in living hell right now.  

So through Ethan, we meet some old characters such as David Pilcher and my personal favorite Pam.  Pam is great because of the way Crouch writes her.  She is that perfect mix of sociopath, deadly evil, and sexy as all hell.  We get a back story on Pilcher and how Wayward Pines came to be; which helps the story move.  And we meet new characters, like Tobias the Ranger-esque character that is floating outside Wayward Pines.  And Margaret, she is a captured aberration or abbey.  I have a feeling she will play a bigger role in the next installment.

The novel is a bridge, connecting PINES with the next novel which is currently untitled coming out in 2014.  So something for you to look forward to, kids.  And since this novel is a bridge, not much action is involved.  Instead we get a great character driven story that allows you to connect to said characters just time for the chaos that will be the next novel.  And Crouch writes his characters quite well in this one.  Their emotions literally drip from the page. 

Crouch begins weaving many storylines in this book.  When I saw I was at 90% on my Kindle and still so much story needed to be told, I realized that I was going to be gut punched with a cliffhanger.  Damn you, Crouch. 

Pick up PINES and then WAYWARD here.

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The Afterword from this author on this title gave me a better perspective of how and why Crouch wrote this novel the way that he did.  Pines is an emotional as well as a physical rollercoaster.  And it is the reader that goes through this rollercoaster as much as the lead character, Ethan Burke.

Pines begins with Ethan Burke running for his life and not remembering a damn thing.  He wakes up in a hospital bed.  He escapes the empty hospital in search of his identity and only ends up with more questions and a concussion.

Ethan awakens once more, identity intact, but in a town that quickly raises his suspicions.  As he digs deeper into the mystery of Wayward Pines, the more hostile the town becomes; especially the main antagonist Sheriff Pope.

Ethan tries to flee, but drives in circles and runs into high mountains and electrified fence.

Crouch is pretty fantastic with his prose here.  He makes characters that infuriate you as they constantly stop Ethan from the truth.  On his third trip to the hospital, the nurse becomes quite sinister and deadly with needle that more resembles a butcher knife. 

Crouch is great at writing action sequences, but he also touches on some powerful emotions.  Emotions that are easily felt by the reader.  Towards the end, Crouch finally pulls back the curtain to reveal the reality and it is pretty original.  And it reminded me of such shows as Twin Peaks or Lost.  Low and behold the Afterword explains the homage to these shows.

I have read three books by Crouch in the past year.  Each one good, but each contain some sort of action climbing sequence.  It is as if Crouch needs to include climbing into each of his stories.  I can appreciate passion for a sport, but I feel an inclusion of such a sequence begins to wear on the reader.  To a point where it becomes a cliche; sort of like Koontz and his golden retriever obsession.

I give this book a 7/10.  Crouch is pretty flawless in taking the reader on an emotional and physical ride.  Tune in to your television sets as Pines has been picked up to be adapted into a TV series (and deserving so).  And stay tuned to your Kindles as Crouch writes his sequel to Pines titled Wayward.  Crouch hints at the plot for a sequel and I’m pretty excited to see where Crouch takes us next in this universe he has created.

Until next time, Keep Reading!

~SJB