Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Review: 47 Echo by Shawn Kupfer

Release date: January 17, 2011
Synopsis (via Goodreads):
Russia, 2019. Combined Chinese and North Korean forces have taken increasing amounts of territory in a war that is devastating the world.

Nick Morrow is a convict conscript assigned to 47 Echo—a suicide squad. No one cares whether they live or die, as long as they complete their missions. Under the command of a Marine Corps with nothing but contempt for its squadron of felons, they are on a mission to defend what's left of war-ravaged Russia.

A half-Chinese drifter, much isn't expected of Nick. Like the other members of 47 Echo, he's viewed as little more than cannon fodder. However, Nick's sense of honor, analytical mind and skills on the battlefield just might be what the squad needs to survive the meat-grinder that is the front lines of this bloody war. But can Nick himself survive the brutal crimes that haunt his past?
My Thoughts: You're going to have to let me work out my thoughts on this review because in a lot of ways this isn't the type of book that I normally read.  There might be some rambling.  Then again, there might not be.  Oh, who am I kidding, I go off on tangents on every other review I put up, why would this one be any different?

Here's the thing, while I enjoy a good space battle, a good street fight, a good witch vs. demon showdown in the streets, I very rarely dive into books that are almost straight military.  While some might argue that this is a futuristic military-type book and, thus, can be lumped in with my sci-fi books, I'm still standing firm and saying that it's not my normal genre.

I'm going to pause here for a moment and go on record as saying that I did enjoy this book.  It was an interesting and gritty take on what a future war might look like.  I mean, if I lived in this place and time I'd be deader than dead, but I can see the potential behind what Shawn Kupfer has created here.  And it's a little bit chilling.

I do have something that I have to get off my chest: The dialogue is a bit stilted.  No, it's a lot stilted.  BUT WAIT!  Since I think that most real-life military dialogue is stilted and so peppered with acronyms and slang that I can hardly follow it, I'm not knocking this.  I do think that every character in the book spent over half their reactionary time smirking, but that's just me.  And as long as I'm talking about characters, Nick Morrow, our erstwhile hero, is completely perfect.  The guy can do anything and he can't fail, regardless of the odds.  It would have been nice to see him a bit more flawed, a bit less than super-powered.  I will give props and say that he used his team's strengths (sniper, hacker, demolitions expert) to carry out his missions, showing a willingness to lean on others in times of need, but ... he's perfect, guys.  Absolutely perfect.  Flaws make people intriguing.  Flaws make them easier to relate to.  I felt more of a connection to Daniel and Bryce and their forbidden love than I did to the man driving the entire story.

Okay, I go and say all that and then I have to say (again!) that I really did enjoy the book.  From the time that Nick settles into his new unit and starts out-thinking the bad guys it had my attention.  The ending really came together for me and I was impressed with the twists and turns the plot took.

So, while 47 Echo is not my normal type of book, I liked stepping out of my comfort zone and reading something a little grittier, a little more realistic than my usual.  Not that I'm admitting in any way that psychic humans, shapeshifters, vampires, demons and fallen angels aren't realistic.  BECAUSE THEY ARE!  At least in my world.

Thank you to NetGalley and Carina Press for providing this ARC.
Read and reviewed for the E-book Challenge.

**Is it weird that the only tag I have that remotely fits this book is my "sci-fi" tag?  Somebody tell me it's not weird so that I can sleep well tonight!

1 comment:

  1. Ohhh, I want this one for sure! I spent 4 years in the military and we do have a language all our own. I understand that it can make people feel a bit left out sometimes. Oh, and we all smirk most of the time in real life too! Ha! Great review! Thanks!