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Old 09-22-2010, 10:18 PM   #16
WT Sharpe
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Originally Posted by AnemicOak View Post
...The action scenes were plenty and enjoyable. There are copious plot twists, unfortunately very few of them are at all believable. There are so many coincidences and that along with the main characters nearly clairvoyant ability to reach deductions, like tracking down a missing witness/conspirator, made it pretty hard to maintain a suspension of disbelief.

That being said, Killing Floor is a fairly fast paced ride that provides a decent action movie type diversion.
Overall I like it. C/C+
I would give it 4½ stars out of 5. It was really enjoyable and well-written, but the coincidences did strain credulity.
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Old 09-23-2010, 12:37 AM   #17
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I think in these types of novels for the most part, you have to have the coincidences....just seems like they are in every novel of this type.
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Old 09-23-2010, 03:44 AM   #18
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I enjoyed it - it's not Great Lit, but you don't always want to read Great Lit.

I've read all the other Reacher books that you can get on the Kindle in the UK since, and although they vary a bit in quality, they're much the same kind of thing. Each is an easy-to-read romp with a "mystery" that's usually not so hard to guess half way through.

At around the price of a pint, I think that they're good value.

Does anyone know how to get "The Enemy", "One Shot" and/or "The Hard Way" in the UK?
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Old 09-23-2010, 08:03 AM   #19
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Read it and enjoyed it. The coincidence of his brother was a bit of reach, maybe it was to make it more reasonable for Jack to care about what is going on and get involved?

I plan on reading the entire series. I read The Enemy before The Killing Floor, and I've started Die Trying. I'm hooked.
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Old 09-23-2010, 08:18 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by WT Sharpe View Post
I would give it 4½ stars out of 5. It was really enjoyable and well-written, but the coincidences did strain credulity.
I gave it 4 out of 5 stars. Really enjoyed it. Some of the complaints here did bother me a bit, but not enough to pull me out of the book. I enjoyed it far more than the Marlowe book we read last month.
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Old 09-23-2010, 11:35 AM   #21
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Sadly like another former favourite author's series, Patricia Cornwell, this series of books have become very robotic and flat.

The Killing Floor is about as good as it gets.
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Old 09-24-2010, 03:43 AM   #22
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I enjoyed it - it's not Great Lit, but you don't always want to read Great Lit.
{snip}
At around the price of a pint, I think that they're good value.
Exactly my thoughts, and for that I'd give it a 3 out of 5.

It kept me turning the pages. A fun lightweight read akin to watching a 'turn your brain off' action movie, and in thinking of the book like that I could easily excuse the coincidences and predictability.

I'd probably pick up a few more Reacher books in the future, ideal for a holiday read.
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Old 09-27-2010, 03:39 PM   #23
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After (as discussed in another thread) adjusting to Child's sentence structure, I pretty much agree with the general consensus that it's a good, lightweight, page turning read even with the improbable coincidences and necessary 'stretches'. I also agree with Quake that it far more enjoyable than the Marlowe book. Three out of 5 stars.

Would pick-up another of the series if my tbr list wasn't..........
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Old 09-27-2010, 03:46 PM   #24
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Which other thread discusses the sentence structure? (ya got me curious now)
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Old 09-27-2010, 06:17 PM   #25
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You have me curious as well, CharlieBird. Nothing about the sentence structure Child used struck me as particularly noteworthy as I was reading the book, and I'd like to see what I missed.
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Old 09-27-2010, 06:18 PM   #26
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Showing my in-expertise (I don't know how to link to another thread), but it's Jon's "Jack Reacher series by Lee Child".

On page 2 of the current Read Recommendations Forum.
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Old 09-27-2010, 06:27 PM   #27
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Ahhh. This one?

The short choppy sentences mentioned at the beginning of the above thread didn't bother me -- I think in those exact same ways. My text messages are much like that --- and so are my posts here, unless I remember to fill my sentences out more completely!

Last edited by badgoodDeb; 09-27-2010 at 06:40 PM.
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Old 09-27-2010, 07:09 PM   #28
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Showing my in-expertise (I don't know how to link to another thread), but it's Jon's "Jack Reacher series by Lee Child".
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Originally Posted by badgoodDeb View Post
Ahhh. This one?
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Old 09-27-2010, 09:30 PM   #29
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Okay, here are my random thoughts about Killing floor:

Looks like my taste in books is quite different from most posters' here: I found the book impossible to finish. Literally. I stopped after about 45% on my Kindle.

It started out really well: I liked the opening arrest scene at the diner, and the next few chapters were decent, too. It started to fall apart for me, when the local police (who initially was portrayed as being very well-trained and professional) suddenly started making rookie mistakes (Putting two suspects for the same crime into the same cell? Bad idea. Not searching the car of a murdered police officer, because it doesn't seem important? WTF?!) and was generally unable to do anything without Reacher's help. I'm not just talking about the corrupt guys, I'm talking about all of them: It takes our hero to come up with the idea of calling a phone number written on a piece of evidence, a well-trained cop hands the investigation over to him and, of course, the girl falls for him immediately, simply because he exists.

There are so many missed opportunities for sub-plots here: If Finlay were a fully developed character, he could resist Reacher's attempts to run the show, leading to interesting tension. If Roscoe were more than the token love interest, her sense of duty might conflict with her attraction to Reacher. None of this happens - they are only standing around taking orders from Reacher. (Or, in Roscoe's case, lying down to have sex with him.)

Up to the point where I stopped, Reacher had yet to make a serious mistake, the kind that would get him into mortal danger. Any danger always came from the outside, and Jack would always fight it off easily. To me, a flawless hero who doesn't make mistakes is just boring. For an example of a highly entertaining hero who makes mistakes aplenty and still saves the day, read Jim Butcher's Dresden Files series.

There you'll also find something else I was missing in this book: Humor and irony. No, dead brothers don't call for guffaws, but a little self-deprecating can go a long way. Besides: The seriousness didn't even translate into drama: Reacher's brother's death doesn't get more than a few clichéd phrases out of the guy.

However, by the time Reacher did learn the dead man happened to be his brother (from a fax which he - a civilian who had just walked into town and had been a murder suspect - just took out of the police fax machine with many officers around him watching) I didn't care anymore anyway. The whole plot had started to feel like nothing more than a string of events conveniently set up to showcase Jack Reacher's near perfection in fighting, investigating and lovemaking.

Apparently, many people are able to overlook all these flaws and enjoy the book as mindless fun, but for me they kill the story and the fun - they are (wait for it) "killing flaws". (badum-ching!)

Seriously, though, even for a freshman effort, I found this to be rather weak, and I was quite surprised to learn that it had actually won the "best first novel" Anthony Award. Among the other winners are Patricia Cornwall and Stieg Larsson both of whom IMHO delivered much better quality in their first books.
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Old 09-28-2010, 11:34 AM   #30
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Quote:
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Okay, here are my random thoughts about Killing floor:

Looks like my taste in books is quite different from most posters' here: I found the book impossible to finish. Literally. I stopped after about 45% on my Kindle.

It started out really well: I liked the opening arrest scene at the diner, and the next few chapters were decent, too. It started to fall apart for me, when the local police (who initially was portrayed as being very well-trained and professional) suddenly started making rookie mistakes (Putting two suspects for the same crime into the same cell? Bad idea. Not searching the car of a murdered police officer, because it doesn't seem important? WTF?!) and was generally unable to do anything without Reacher's help. I'm not just talking about the corrupt guys, I'm talking about all of them: It takes our hero to come up with the idea of calling a phone number written on a piece of evidence, a well-trained cop hands the investigation over to him and, of course, the girl falls for him immediately, simply because he exists.

There are so many missed opportunities for sub-plots here: If Finlay were a fully developed character, he could resist Reacher's attempts to run the show, leading to interesting tension. If Roscoe were more than the token love interest, her sense of duty might conflict with her attraction to Reacher. None of this happens - they are only standing around taking orders from Reacher. (Or, in Roscoe's case, lying down to have sex with him.)

Up to the point where I stopped, Reacher had yet to make a serious mistake, the kind that would get him into mortal danger. Any danger always came from the outside, and Jack would always fight it off easily. To me, a flawless hero who doesn't make mistakes is just boring. For an example of a highly entertaining hero who makes mistakes aplenty and still saves the day, read Jim Butcher's Dresden Files series.

There you'll also find something else I was missing in this book: Humor and irony. No, dead brothers don't call for guffaws, but a little self-deprecating can go a long way. Besides: The seriousness didn't even translate into drama: Reacher's brother's death doesn't get more than a few clichéd phrases out of the guy.

However, by the time Reacher did learn the dead man happened to be his brother (from a fax which he - a civilian who had just walked into town and had been a murder suspect - just took out of the police fax machine with many officers around him watching) I didn't care anymore anyway. The whole plot had started to feel like nothing more than a string of events conveniently set up to showcase Jack Reacher's near perfection in fighting, investigating and lovemaking.

Apparently, many people are able to overlook all these flaws and enjoy the book as mindless fun, but for me they kill the story and the fun - they are (wait for it) "killing flaws". (badum-ching!)

Seriously, though, even for a freshman effort, I found this to be rather weak, and I was quite surprised to learn that it had actually won the "best first novel" Anthony Award. Among the other winners are Patricia Cornwall and Stieg Larsson both of whom IMHO delivered much better quality in their first books.
That's kind of how I felt about the latest Star Trek film (the one with the all new cast). There were so many holes in the plot and so many extremely unlikely coincidences that it became really troublesome, but in the end I suspended belief and didn't let it interfere with my enjoyment of the film. In the same way, many of those things you pointed out were bothersome, and the book would have been better without them, but I still enjoyed the ride. As someone else pointed out, Child never worked in law enforcement. Perhaps if he had that first-hand experience the story line would have been more believable; but it was still a heck of a lot of fun, IMO.
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