Drifting in and out of consciousness (oxfordhacker) wrote,
Drifting in and out of consciousness
oxfordhacker

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Review 1: 'Bad Monkeys' by Matt Ruff

Reassurance: I'm very spoiler-averse, so this should be safe to read even if you are too.

Synopsis: Jane has been arrested for murder. In a series of interviews with a psychologist, she explains that she's a 'Bad Monkey', part of a vigilante group dedicated to covertly killing evil-doers who would otherwise escape justice. Her interviewer tries to keep up and decide what to believe as she reveals more and more about this group, its missions and its enemies, and her story just keeps getting darker and stranger...

Review: This book moved fast and dragged me along with it. Halfway through I was thinking "Shit, I'm halfway through. I wish this was longer, or part of a series or something." In retrospect it was exactly the right length, but that response reflects how entertaining the book was, both in premise and in execution. If the set-up put you in mind of a smart modern thriller film like 'The Usual Suspects' or 'Fight Club', you're thinking along the right lines. It's visual, vivid, atmospheric and action-packed, and just keeps intensifying as it builds to its climax. Sure, you might find yourself looking back on it all with a slightly dazed suspicion that the speed was used to dodge questions or jump plot holes, but it was bloody good fun while it lasted.

Suggested pull quotes for the next edition:

This monkey's gone to heaven!
or
Like 'Wanted', but not shit!


Illustrative excerpt from Amazon reviews:
* * * * *
...it is a clever piece of science fiction writing, for reasons that will become obvious all too soon to a discerning reader. However, I suspect that most will miss these reasons, and conclude erroneously that Ruff has written just a brilliant, exceptionally well-crafted, psychological thriller.
Tags: books, reading week, reviews
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