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In the fifth book of the “wildly entertaining” (Kirkus Reviews) Miriam Black series, Miriam continues her journey to find answers on how to change her fate and begins to make right some of what she’s done wrong. Armed with new knowledge that suggests a great sacrifice must be made to change her fate, Miriam continues her quest and learns that she must undo the tragedies of her past to move forward. One such tragedy is Wren, who is now a teen caught up in a bad relationship with the forces that haunt Miriam. Wren has become a killer, just like Miriam. Black must try to save the girl, but what’s ahead is something she thought impossible…
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Emily Beresford is the only good part of this.
This book is a clunky, troubled mess. I’ve enjoyed some of the other books in the series but Wendig’s lack of understanding of firearms and fighting completely ruin it. This is absolutely not for readers who have hunted, fought competitively, or worked in the profession of arms.
It’s also not for bisexuals. He’s blatantly using us to try to make a trump card for peer acceptance. He’s turned a character with potential and an interesting power into a book that’s boring. He does this by watering down his characters and making the entire premise uninteresting.
The novel is just so full of Wendig’s hate for women, bisexuals, and animals it’s nearly too much to take. Mark my words, it’s just a matter of time before the #metoo campaign catches up with him. He’s going to harm someone who chooses to identify as female when they reject his advances.
The build up of the cabin sequence is phoned in. Miriam and Frankenstein playing house as the world burns around them is not true to either character. If you’ve ever lived on the streets you’ll know this isn’t how a street kid handles things. Miriam would have gone back into the wind. This ridiculous miss is obviously written by someone who has never spent anytime on the concrete. He took his tough, intelligent character and made her into a whining sock puppet of what someone who’s survived real trauma is like.
The same with Frankenstein’s feather stealing fiancée and her terrible sub-plot. The Trespasser becoming this omnipotent, omnipresent being who can ride into people the way Miriam rides birds is obvious. Turning everyone Miriam encounters into these zombies with bits of powers like the recycled trash of a badgirl he uses here.
The murder of Frankenstein is ridiculous. This really felt like Wendig just fell asleep at the wheel. He could have done anything else here and been better off.
Then there’s Wren…. Look, here’s the thing, it really seems as if Wendig just wants to write torture porn about young women. His hatred for the people who choose to identify as female and those of us in the bisexual community is overwhelming. It feels like he’s secretly a far right extremist.
The only reason I stuck it out was Emily’s performance. However there’s only so much the narrator can do with such a diseased and hateful mess.
The crazy little sister you always wanted.
Wendig has a knack for combining words that would sound ridiculous coming from anyone else and turning them into poignant comedy or just plain comedy. keep 'em coming Chuck.
No idea what you are smoking/drinking when you write but you found a magic combination no one else has.
- B. Andrews
Miriam Black Just Can't Catch a Break
After a lukewarm response to Blackbirds (Miriam Black 1), I decided to come back for Mockingbird a couple months later. Since then, I've gotten another Miriam Black novel every month and eagerly await her upcoming finale.
No spoilers: like Books 3 and 4, Miriam's past keeps coming back to haunt her. Wendig's sly method of recalling past characters that seemed down for the count really boosts the continuity of this series. Add in the building supernatural nature of Miriam's ablities, and you've got this thrill ride that continues to surprise. Wendig even subtly leverages the rebirth from book 4 to bring back a character from book 1. Now that is storytelling I can get behind.