Category Archives: Music, Books, TV & Film

An assortment of reviews and discussions on music, bands, concerts, books, TV shows and films from all over the world.

BOOK REVIEW: Harlan Coben’s Latest Thriller Six Years

Six_Years

WARNING: MAY CONTAIN SOME SPOILERS

The first sentence says it all,

“I sat in the back pew and watched the only woman I would ever love marry another man.”

With 24 bestselling novels under his belt, there’s no doubt Coben knows the formula to bring you into  a thriller from the outset and have you begging for more. As delicately crafted as his first sentence, the blurb is just as tantalizing,

“Six years have passed since Jake Fisher watched Natalie, the love of his life, marry another man.  But six years haven’t come close to extinguishing his feelings, and when Jake comes across Todd’s obituary, he can’t keep himself away from the funeral. There he gets the glimpse of Todd’s wife he’s hoping for . . . but she is not Natalie.”

So I paid the $11.99 on Amazon to download the e-book addition and spent the next 3 days racing through it. It was indeed what the critiques call a page turner – though that phrase seems to lose its value somewhat in the e-book world – his thrilling prose and slow drip of facts had my heart racing right through the first half of the book.

It was about this time however that I recognized the author’s style. For a second I thought I had actually read the book before, but then I realized it was another book. Funnily enough, it was actually Coben’s first ever book, Play Dead, which is about as literal as it suggests, which I had previously read on a trip through Europe. I had just finished the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo series and was drooling for some more crime/thriller excitement. For me ‘Play Dead’ was the epitome of a thriller gone cheesy. As much as it had me on the edge of my seat, the missing person story was all too cliche, and the culminating sibling complex climaxing at the end was all too predictable.

It just shows you not much changes in a 20 year career as Six Years wasn’t much different. Although the book did have me spilling my coffee as my gaze seldom drifted from the pages screen, the random pack of; mafia, witness protection, missing persons, string of murders etc. all culminated in another fairly predictable ending. 

Coben also seems to have a love affair with Latin as the novel is filled with short terms and phrases in the language which either shows his pretentiousness, or perhaps just my lack of basic Latin. I’d rather go with the former. It’s not like I plan on following his style with my future novel by throwing in random German phrases. At least I don’t think so…

But aside from this I give the book 3.5 stars. There is a reason he is a best selling international authors and it isn’t so much his prose or his plot ideas. Rather it’s his ability to sell, and he is damn good at it. I bought the novel didn’t I? But hey, we force ourselves through pathetic reality TV shows, and dribbling American Sitcoms, so there is definitely time for a bit of a thrill in the air. And even if you find yourself predicting the ending, just enjoy the journey along the way and you should be somewhat satisfied.

But don’t take my word for it. Watch the book trailer below.

(A book trailer? Really? That exists? I told you this guy could sell!)

FREE music

I finally did my monthly update of music. As I work in a club, I am constantly surrounded by all the latest tunes, hot off the satellite, mixing and mashing their way into our Saturday nights. So after a while, these certain songs which I never would have liked in the past become so embedded within my psyche that I feel the need to then add these songs to my own personal music library.

But these days it’s just so hard to escape the world of FREE music as it is literally everywhere. I sometimes consider spending the few dollars for some songs I want on iTunes, but it’s just too easy to go to another site and download it. I use to use Kazaa back in the day, then moved onto limewire. Now with them out of the picture I was thinking maybe the laws were finally getting tight enough and I’d finally have to start paying for music again.

But then I found another site, and there are countless more out there. Even music on Youtube these days is very easily downloadable, so its gotten to the stage where it is just impossible to make me have the NEED to buy music anymore.

Even the trailer/free play options you get on iTunes for the latest hits have been extended from 10 seconds, to about a minute of free listening, as the world of pay music has really hit a crossroads. Is it going to get to a stage where company’s will just give up on trying to sell music, and instead hand the job over to advertisers to give bands money. Perhaps bands and DJ’s will have to have product placement in their songs to even stay in the industry. Think about it, “Dance the night away…tonight we drinkin’ coke on the floor!” or “I need a Big mac, Big mac, Big mac is what I need Hey Hey!”

Who know’s what’s going to happen in the future, but even though the ‘illegal’ download industry is bigger than ever, artists are still finding ways to make millions of dollars. I don’t know when I’ll finally give in to paying for music, though it probably won’t be by choice if it ever happens. But for now, I’ll stick to listening to the trailer on iTunes, and getting the songs for FREE elsewhere.

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