5 books, 5 minutes, 500 words or less: Volume 2

5 books, 5 minutes, 500 words or less: Volume 2

Once again, I find myself falling far behind on my book reviews.  I wish it wasn’t so – but 5 months of wishing hasn’t changed anything, so I’ve come to a conclusion.  It’s time for another installment of “5 books, 5 minutes, 500 words or less” (you can read the first installment here).  Let’s review the rules – I’ll review 5 books, with each review clocking in at 100 words or less, that hopefully you can read in 5 minutes or less.  (I guess that’s really kind of self evident, based on the title, huh?)  Think of it as speed dating for bok reviews.  It’s much harder than it sounds, constraining my brilliance and formidable insights to only 100 words per book, but it’s a great exercise in efficiency.  Hope you enjoy!

“The Ark” by Boyd Morrison

With his well-written and focused debut novel “The Ark”, Boyd Morrison makes his case for a place on your bookshelf between James Rollins and Douglas Preston.  Equal parts action adventure and biblical thriller, “The Ark” follows archeologist Dilara Kenner and former combat engineer Tyler Locke as the race to save the world from the destructive secret that lies hidden within Noah’s Ark. With a cinematic scope and tightly plotted premise, this book is the perfect companion for an afternoon by the pool or a long cross-country flight to Los Angeles.  Expect to see big things from Morrison in the future.

“Star Wars: Death Troopers” by Joe Schreiber

Star Wars and zombies – do you really need to say more than that?  When a prison barge breaks down and is forced to dock with a seemingly abandoned Star Destroyer to scavenge parts, the inmates soon learn there are things worse than life on a prison planet.  This would be a good Star Wars novel, or a good zombie novel, in its own right.  Put them together and its more fun than an Ewok in a blender.  Featuring a surprise, starring role by a pair of Star Wars regulars, this is a book fans can’t afford to miss.

“Red: My Uncensored Life In Rock” by Sammy Hagar

The Red Rocker cuts loose with an unvarnished look at his life in the music business.  As a Van Hagar fan, it was tough to relive the implosion of the most successful Van Halen line-up to date – but interesting to see the carnage from an insider’s view.  Sammy comes off as the adult in the scenario (it is his book after all), and proves that living well is the best revenge.  The most shocking revelation for me?  Not just a rock star, Sammy’s also an incredibly successful businessman.  He once ran the second largest fire sprinkler company in America.

“Under Heaven” by Guy Gavriel Kay

Guy Gavriel Kay continues to raise the bar in historical fantasy literature.  A hauntingly beautiful and lushly realized society, based on Tang Dynasty China, forms the backdrop for this tale. Shen Tai has spent the last two years honoring his dead father by burying the unremembered dead from the last great war between empires.  Presented with a gift of unimaginable value by his people’s enemies, Shen Tai is set on a course that intersects love and duty in the realm of emperors.  Epic in scope and lyrical in delivery, “Under Heaven” is yet another jewel in Gavriel Kay’s crown.

“The Breach” by Patrick Lee

One of the most engrossing and original stories I’ve read.  From the moment Travis Chase stumbles across a downed 747 in the Alaskan wilderness containing the body of the first lady, to the final twists delivered in the book’s closing pages; this is a story that will not let you go.  Lee deftly weaves sci-fi with political intrigue and straight-up action in this thinking man’s thriller.  More than once I found myself caught flat-footed by a surprise turn, and the story hid its final secrets from me until the very end.  That’s worth the price of admission to me.

There you have it – the second installment of 5 books, 5 minutes, 500 words or less.  Let me know what you think.  Useful?  Insightful?  Dreadfully boring?  Complete cop out?  Speak up people and let your voice be heard!

© 2011, The Word Zombie. All rights reserved.

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