Posted in Audiobooks, Book Reviews, Novels

REVIEW: Honky Tonk Samurai (Hap and Leonard #9) by Joe R. Lansdale

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*No Major Spoilers*

Only Hap and Leonard would catch a cold case with hot cars, hot women, and ugly skinheads.

The story starts simply enough when Hap, a former 60s activist and self-proclaimed white trash rebel, and Leonard, a tough black, gay Vietnam vet and Republican with an addiction to Dr. Pepper, are working a freelance surveillance job in East Texas. The uneventful stakeout is coming to an end when the pair witness a man abusing his dog. Leonard takes matters into his own fists, and now the bruised dog abuser wants to press charges.

One week later, a woman named Lilly Buckner drops by their new PI office with a proposition: find her missing granddaughter, or she’ll turn in a video of Leonard beating the dog abuser. The pair agrees to take on the cold case and soon discover that the used car dealership where her granddaughter worked is actually a front for a prostitution ring. What began as a missing-person case becomes one of blackmail and murder.

I was recommended this series through a user on Reddit. Someone was looking for novels about gay detectives, and this was one of the recommendations. I chose this novel purely on the title, the other novels in this series have unique titles as well so let’s jump into Honky Tonk Samurai!

This novel is one of the more memorable detective novels I’ve read. Honky Tonk Samurai is filled with colorful characters, non-stop action, and redneck/Texas humor. I will say that the language used is very vulgar. So if you’re not into that kind of thing, you might want to pass on this one. In defense of the choice words and jokes, I felt like that was part of the charm.

Hap and Leonard have great chemistry! You can tell they’ve been through a lot together. Leonard made me laugh at his love of vanilla cookies and Dr. Pepper. That kind of reminds me of myself, I love cookies and Dr. Pepper.

The main plot twist left me baffled, but in the end, it all made sense once all of the pieces were put together. So bonus points for me not guessing the mystery! Usually, I’m able to figure out the mystery about halfway through the book. This one kept me guessing and I really liked that about it.

More on Hap and Leonard’s chemistry, with them being like brothers from another mother, it was a nice change of pace from a lot of the other stories I’ve read in recent weeks. Leonard, I’d say, is the rougher of the two characters even though he’s gay. He’s one that does not mess around when it comes to protecting those that need it. Hap, on the other hand, is more of the mediator type, kind of like keeping the rough part of Leonard in control when necessary.

Overall this book was something new and interesting that I’d never heard of or thought to look up, the subject matter was a bit different but extremely interesting! If you like a story about rough and tough southern boys and some redneck action, this is most definitely the book for you! Although, like I said if crude and vulgar language isn’t your thing then this book is kind of a pass.

Posted in Audiobooks, Book Reviews, Novels

REVIEW: Infamous by Ace Atkins

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*No Major Spoilers*

In July 1933, the gangster known as George “Machine Gun” Kelly staged the kidnapping-for-ransom of an Oklahoma oil­man. He would live to regret it. Kelly was never the sharpest knife in the drawer, and what started clean soon became messy, as two of his partners cut themselves into the action; a determined former Texas Ranger makes tracking Kelly his mission; and Kelly’s wife, ever alert to her own self-interest, starts playing both ends against the middle.

The result is a mesmerizing tale set in the first days of the modern FBI, featuring one of the best femmes fatales in history—the Lady Macbeth of Depression-era crime—a great unexpected hero, and some of the most colorful supporting characters in recent crime fiction.

I am a big fan of 1920-30s era fiction, especially the gangsters and Prohibition Era stories. Even though most historical fiction romanticizes racial and sexism struggles, I still enjoy them all the same.

This novel mainly takes place in the Oklahoma/Texas area. I am from this area of the U.S. so I was familiar with the layout. It felt good to have Oklahoma represented in a novel about 1930s America.

I enjoyed how Infamous felt like a documentary about Machine Gun Kelley and the other gangsters he was associated with. The language used made me feel like I was right there with both the gangsters and the officers themselves.

If you are looking for a fascinating look into 1930s America, then I would highly recommend this novel. Infamous felt like a biopic of George “Machine Gun” Kelly and life as a whole in 1930s America. I enjoyed this novel of crime, betrayal, and survival in a Depression-era world.

Posted in Personal Blogs

Back From Retropalooza!

My weekend in Arlington, TX was fun and crazy! I got to meet a lot of awesome people and support some of my favorite artists!

I love Retropalooza because I’ve made so many friends, and it feels good to have a small circle of friends that I can see each year.

I’ll have my next review coming up on Wednesday! Thanks for all of the love and support!

Posted in Discussions, Personal Blogs

Going to Retropalooza!

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I’ll be leaving for my once-a-year trip to Arlington, TX for Retropalooza on Friday. A retro video game convention, where nerds and geeks can get together and enjoy sharing the same interests.

This will be my third year going. Each year I enjoy it more and more. The people you meet are just there to have fun, just like you are. The guests are popular Youtubers that either play video games or discuss video games in general.

As always I’m going to be bringing plenty of reading materials, both ebooks and audiobooks. Hopefully, I’ll be able to get back into the swing of things by the time I get back!

Thanks for everything guys, I know it’s taking me a while to get back to reviewing. I appreciate your patience.

Posted in Book Reviews, Novels

REVIEW: Day by Day Armageddon by J.L. Bourne

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*NO MAJOR SPOILERS*

When an epidemic suddenly starts in China and rapidly hits the USA, a former military soldier will have to use all of the training he has to survive in a world overtaken by the living dead.

Along the way, he meets some fellow survivors. Their odds are bettered, however, there are more mouths to feed. They will have to make choices that are life or death. Nothing is easy in the world of an apocalypse.

This story is told in a journal style, which is a very interesting way to write a zombie apocalyptic book. There’s no dull moment in this book, each journal entry is either an update on the situation or recounts of the actions of that day.

With the main character being military-trained, it brought a more interesting viewpoint into the story that allowed for a unique take fighting against zombie hordes.

From being trapped in an airplane control tower, to being attacked by other raiders. There is not a slow moment in this book. This book is quite the thrill ride. Even though there wasn’t any particular character I became attached to, the book held my attention and was exciting from cover to cover.

I can’t wait to get ahold of the next book in this series just because I find it so interesting how it’s written and the story itself is very riveting that I want to know what happens next!

I would recommend this to anyone looking for a different take on the zombie apocalypse genre and to people who love the show “The Walking Dead”.