Tag Archives: Brackett

Review – Streets of Payne by Jeff Brackett (Audiobook)

Streets-of-Payne-800-Cover-reveal-and-Promotional I got to know Mr. Brackett through a writers group on Facebook. He gave me a copy of the Audible book for review.

Synopsis: Humanity is in the eye of the beholder. But for street-smart detective Amber Payne, it’s the eyes that aren’t human. Cybernetic implants replaced the organics she lost in the line of duty, and their appearance often causes Amber to doubt her self-worth. Rookie detective Kevin Glass is her partner. And though he may be new, Kevin’s unparalleled skill as an elite cyber-surfer makes him an invaluable asset. When Alta Corp contracts the two of them to solve a case of high stakes data theft, they will need every bit of skill, experience, and determination to succeed. For the more they investigate, the more it becomes evident that this case is much more than it appears, and its resolution may forever alter the world in which they live.

Production: This book was narrated by Joy Nash. She’s an excellent narrator and really made the story that much better. She performed each character, though her performances weren’t over the top. She used just enough characterization to aid in keeping them straight.

Grade: B+

Story: I love cyberpunk. I played both Cyberpunk and Shadowrun in college and am a big fan of the genre in film and text. I really looked forward to experiencing this story. Jeff certainly didn’t disappoint. He developed his own world, but used all of the tropes that make Cyberpunk what it is. On it’s own, there’s nothing special about the plot. It’s well developed and moves along at a good pace. Where the writing really shines is the characters.

For me a story is all about the characters. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, well developed, interesting characters can make an alright story excellent. And they can flatten an otherwise enjoyable tale. Here it’s definitely a case of the former. The protagonists are an interesting mix of personalities. Amber Payne is a tough female lead who is able to show vulnerability and still kick some ass. Her partner Kevin, a hacker extraordinaire, is also well developed and there are a few secondary characters that I enjoyed quite a bit as well. When bad things happen, and very bad things do happen, I care about what’s going on and when the story comes to a close I was sad to be unable to read book two. Because there isn’t one. Yet.

There’s a boat load of action in this story, and no small amount of mystery. In a book of this length (357 pages in the print edition), he keeps both going. There are a number of plot lines besides the main mystery, and he brings it all to a satisfying conclusion. One surprising scene involved combat in cyberspace and it was just as riveting an action scene as any of the physical battles.

It’s not a perfect story. The bad guys haunt the background and aren’t as well fleshed out as I would have liked. There are also a few nitpicks I have on the tech side of things. None of that makes this a deal killer.

Grade: B+

Verdict: If you’re a fan of cyberpunk (think Blade Runner, The Matrix, Akira) then this is definitely worth checking out. If you like fast paced action featuring a great female lead, but SF isn’t your thing, I still think it’s a risk worth taking.

Grade: B+

Jeff’s Blog
Amazon E-book
Audible book

Ebook Giveaway – Eyes of the Seer/Half Past Midnight

Congratulations to Michael Spence for winning One Way and Betty Curran for winning Stuck In Estrogen’s Funhouse! If you’ve already won, please feel free to comment, but I really want future e-books to go to folks that haven’t won anything. Also, though I’m giving two books away this week, I’ll do a separate drawing for each. You might still win both, but this way there’s a chance for two people to win.

The first book up to bat this week is Eyes of the Seer by Peter Dawes.

It all started with a murder. Two victims lay dead at the hands of Peter Dawes, but what laid in wait for him was not the sound of sirens or the banging of a gavel. It would turn a doctor into a killer and a man into a monster.

Follow Peter as he exchanges his blood-stained clothing for tailored suits, his scalpel for fine-crafted daggers, and is reinvented as the newest vampire-child in a coven of decadent sophisticates. He even takes on the name ‘Flynn’ – a child of red – in honor of his new-found devilish side and to further distance himself from his human past.

For four years, Flynn embodies every bit the bloody immortal he was sired to become. Under the reign of his maker, Sabrina, he establishes a reputation as the most feared assassin to ever terrorize the covens of Philadelphia. But the surefooted-steps and quick hands that make him a virtuoso when it comes to killing humans and vampires alike are attributes of the mortal destiny which haunts him even beyond death. And despite all efforts, Peter’s humanity is not as dead as some would prefer.

On the verge of completing their vie for power, Sabrina’s ‘dark-killer’ will suddenly find himself wrestling his devotion to his mistress when an impish sorceress named Monica awakens the hidden powers he was destined to possess. In this world of macabre and shrewdly practical immortal beings, will Flynn’s supernatural gifts be used to orchestrate the wicked deeds of his maker? Or can the cold-blooded nature of a vampire be warmed by the compassion of a Seer?

EYES OF THE SEER is a gripping tale conspicuously authored by Peter Dawes – years later, he’s decided to put the story of his life to paper, albeit listed as ‘fiction’. (Vampires can’t really claim to exist, after all. It would ruin the whole gig.)

The second is Half Past Midnight by Jeff Brackett.

The Doomsday Clock gauges the threat of nuclear war. Currently, the clock is set at six minutes before midnight.

What happens after the hands reach midnight?

Survivalist Leeland Dawcett finds out when he and his family are plunged into the nightmare of their country returned to a third-world state.

No phones. No computers. No television.

At first, Leeland thinks basic survival is the answer.

Until he crosses the path of the wrong guy…

Someone who wants to do more than just survive…

So how do you get these? Merely leave a comment below and your name will be dropped into the virtual hat. There will be two drawings, one for each.

I plan on giving away a book a week this year, but none of them will be my own. Why? Well, I believe in helping introduce people to new authors and nothing does that like FREE! The contests will be as simple as leaving a comment on the blog, or showing me that you’ve left a review on Amazon or Smashwords of books you’ve picked up in the past. I’ll try and change things up to keep them interesting, but by and large you won’t have to work hard.

If you’re an author and you’d like to pitch your hat into the ring, let me know. I’m not asking you to give me anything for free. I plan on buying your e-book from Amazon/Smashwords as a gift for the winner. So in addition to you getting your name out there, you’ll also get a sale for the contest. The most I can budget per week is $2.99, so if you have a book in the $.99-$2.99 price range let me know. I reserve the right to turn you down, but I will try and do so gently. I’d like to have a variety of genres represented.

If you have a free book and would like me to just get the word out I can do that, but you won’t be part of my contest. If your book is more expensive and you would like to donate a copy, that works too.

Shoot me an e-mail, a DM, or leave me a comment to enter your book.