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The Last Invasion (The Second Sam Truman Mystery) (The Sam Truman Mysteries Book 2)

The Last Invasion (The Second Sam Truman Mystery) (The Sam Truman Mysteries Book 2) [Kindle Edition]

Brandon Zuern

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Product Description

Product Description

Eager to put the bizarre, otherworldly events of Catch My Killer! behind him and resume working regular cases again, Sam Truman agrees to investigate a missing persons case when a pair of distraught parents seek his help to find their daughter. The city is being terrorized by a serial killer the cops can’t catch, and Sam fears the worst as his fearless instincts lead him not down the killer’s path, but to uncover a nascent alien invasion that threatens the existence of all life on earth! Sam’s shot at rescuing the girl becomes a race against time before the invasion starts, and all while the unknown killer’s body count rises all over the city. But the unlicensed P.I. is determined to return the girl to her parents and make damn sure that the aliens’ hostile intentions are THE LAST INVASION!

“Listen, if you know what’s good for you, you’ll read Brandon Zuern’s The Last Invasion. That’s not a threat, understand, just a word to the wise…”
-Chris Roberson, Author of Book of Secrets and Creator of iZombie

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 158 KB
  • Print Length: 68 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Abattoir Press (13 May 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00830WSNG
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,227,467 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.8 out of 5 stars  14 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More pulpy goodness than a glass of fresh-squeezed OJ. 25 May 2012
By Blake Benda - Published on
Verified Purchase
I haven't had this much fun with a book in a long time, and I doubt the author has either.

Brandon Zuern's pulp-novel smoothie throws the hard-boiled detective fiction of the 1930s and 40s in the blender with the bizarre, sensational camp of sci-fi pulp from the same era, and the result is a smooth but stout little page-turner (I guess really more of a "page-slider" on my Kindle iPhone app), a throwback to the escapist fun of yesteryear.

When I read the premise the first time, I was worried that the writer would rely too heavily on the gimmicky-sounding hook and associated elements that have been ripe targets for decades, but fortunately that was not the case. The sometimes-goofy substance never overpowers the style used to execute it. Zuern's tough, terse prose is sharp and well-crafted, and like the story itself, finds a nice balance by poking fun at genre tropes while paying homage at the same time. It's clear the writer did his homework and has spent time immersed in old pulp novels, and the result is a book that's in on the joke but still respectful of the source material. Thank god this smoothie lacks the aftertaste of smug, self-satisfied irony.

I don't want to give away too much, so I'll just say it's the story a hard-luck detective who gets a seemingly banal case and ends up way, way, over his head. It may start like many a detective story, but it sure doesn't end like one. The plot is solidly crafted and stays gripping, even when things dip into the absurd, and has a great twist ending. I didn't catch the first Sam Truman book, but I never felt lost reading this one.

I'm far too busy to read as many books as I used to, so the compact length of this story was a plus too, and the compact price should make this a no-brainer for anyone. Genre and pulp fans will catch the little nods (e.g. each chapter is named after a different classic science-fiction film), but the story and writing are fun and entertaining enough for any casual reader.

Overall, I'm very impressed with Mr. Zuern's debut and will definitely check out anything he puts out in the future.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun read, clever story! 12 Oct 2012
By Kreadsalot - Published on
Verified Purchase
Brandon Zuern turned out a pretty impressive novella for his first published work! This mystery story is set in a nameless city, bathed in the shadowy noir light ubiquitous in many classic mystery novels. What differentiates this story from the classics, however, is Zuern's retro sci-fi bent that keeps the plot humming along at a fun, enjoyable clip.

The central character is Sam Truman; a down-and-out P.I. who might be difficult to like for some. Other readers might even consider him an antihero -- he's more than just a little rough around the edges, and doesn't shy away from violence in the name of solving a case. I warmed to the character pretty quickly though, because Zuern gives some valuable insight into the character's quirks and idiosyncrasies.

When Sam Truman spends time at a local soda shop, for example, readers will get more than just plot development. Sam Truman's slightly obsessive soda flavor preferences, (and subsequent disappointment when his favorites are out of stock!), is endearing and helps to humanize a character that spends a lot of time smoking cigarettes and roughing up anyone who gets in his path.

Also -- This Kindle edition is great because you get a sneak preview of the 3rd Sam Truman mystery at the very end!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Book, 1st was better waiting to start the 3rd 13 May 2013
By j.tal--- - Published on
Verified Purchase
I thought this was a very good book, but i feel the first was so good. I hear great things about the third and cannot wait to read it.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great short story 4 May 2013
By johnny b - Published on
Verified Purchase
great story kept you riveted on next plot twist of story really enjoyed it would definatley read more of this author
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Roswell that ends well 26 April 2013
By Wag The Fox - Published on
Verified Purchase
I might have known that the folks behind the Sam Truman series would flip the script with the second installment, switching from a decidedly fantasy-oriented story in Catch My Killer to the pulpy sci-fi pastiche of The Last Invasion. Who needs ghosts and zombies when you can have little green men.

Sam Truman, the hard knocks private eye, is still barely making ends meet with a father and mother step into his office imploring him to find their daughter. The teenage beauty had recently taken up with a greasy-haired biker and the leather-clad reprobate was the last one to see her. Truman takes the case and soon finds himself on the hunt for more than a missing daughter, as a peculiar band of soda-guzzlers may be behind the shenanigans.

The Last Invasion is a little punchier and a little pulpier than Catch My Killer, and you may not consider that a compliment, but I do when it comes to the Sam Truman character. He's a tongue-in-cheek send up of the hard-boiled heroes of yesteryear, set in a zany universe that seems set to reveal itself in a weirdly wonderful way with each unfolding adventure.

It's a story that could have careened into incredulity, but managed to keep things moving straight enough and fast enough to keep me engaged the whole way through. It lends itself as an introduction to Sam Truman as much as the first novella did, so feel free to test the waters with either book if you feel so inclined.

I already have the third and fourth installments in the series on my Kindle, and I look forward to checking them out in due time.
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