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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It verged on too much character development...
An excellent read - although it does almost have too much character development. The book takes many diversions from the main plot to go into the various character's backgrounds. Whilst it does give you a rich mental picture of who the main protagonists are, Brookmyre almost goes over the top with the detail.
Brookmyre has the rare skill of developing a character who...
Published on 23 Aug 2002 by dyls

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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Almost as good as the others, but not quite....
I am a fan of Brookmyre's writing - he writes about subjects and settings which I can relate to more so than Carl Hiassen - but this one was a bit below par. The basic story was good and (unintentionally) topical, but there did seem to be some unneccssary padding. However, the part with the two boys from Ash's school in the truck was hilarious.
I'm still looking...
Published on 4 Dec 2001


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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Almost as good as the others, but not quite...., 4 Dec 2001
By A Customer
I am a fan of Brookmyre's writing - he writes about subjects and settings which I can relate to more so than Carl Hiassen - but this one was a bit below par. The basic story was good and (unintentionally) topical, but there did seem to be some unneccssary padding. However, the part with the two boys from Ash's school in the truck was hilarious.
I'm still looking forward to the return of Parlabane, however.....
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not really a return to form, 15 Nov 2001
By A Customer
I'm afraid I was disappointed with this book. I love his first two novels but have found all the subsequent ones somewhat lacking. It's hard to pinpoint why, but much of the problem stems from too much ranting and not enough plot or characterisation. This particularly applied to the first part of this book - I almost gave up at one point, it started to remind me of someone like Ben Elton trying to be cool... It did improve, but isn't a patch on some of his previous. A shame.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It verged on too much character development..., 23 Aug 2002
An excellent read - although it does almost have too much character development. The book takes many diversions from the main plot to go into the various character's backgrounds. Whilst it does give you a rich mental picture of who the main protagonists are, Brookmyre almost goes over the top with the detail.
Brookmyre has the rare skill of developing a character who you can respect and hate all at the same time: the introduction of Simon, and his cynical views of modern life are something many of us can agree with. But this character is quite evil - so you find yourself agreeing with some of what this utterly hateful character has to say. The other main character, Raymond Ash is an unlikely hero (who I can readily identify with, being a frequent Quake and UT player at LAN parties).
There's some superb plot twists in the story - some unexpected, and some you can see coming from a mile off, and Brookmyre leaves a hanging questionmark at the end of the book: maybe there's more to come?
Or maybe Simon will just end up facing some nice Black and Decker power-tools...
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must-read for all fans, teachers, and new parents., 22 Nov 2001
By A Customer
Nappies, colic, high school kids, guns, bombs and the fabulous city of Aberdeen. A wonderful mix of scottish everyday life and internationally sponsored violence. A fine book, good plot, laugh out loud characters; tapers off gently at the end only to deliver one of the finest last lines ever written.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Genre-bender, 26 Nov 2004
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A. Skudder (Crawley, West Sussex) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A Big Boy Did It And Ran Away (Abacus Books) (Paperback)
I read this book with no expectations or pre-conceptions at all, as I had never heard of the book or the author when I picked it up to read on a long train journey. Now I have read it I am not sure whether its a comedy book with lots of action or a thriller with lots of humour.
The book starts with a masterpiece of suburban angst-ridden satire about cars, lifestyles and modern life generally which proves to be a false start as the story jumps somewhere else completely. After a while the story settles down and plays out a bit like a Tarantino film with lots of jumps back in time to fill out several back stories. (I am being deliberately vague. I enjoyed the little surprises and twists and don't want to spoil them for anyone else.)
By the end of the book, all the flashbacks and false starts have been tied together and you realise what a fantastic jigsaw the plot is, but long before then you have stared turning the pages faster and faster to see what is going to happen next.
For people of a certain age (like mine) the frequent references to old shoot-em-up games like Duke Nukem, Doom and Quake and 70s and 80s rock music are just an added bonus to it all.
At different times this is a comedy, a vicious satire and a psychological thriller, but the different elements enhance each other instead of distract. I can see why the cover quote compares the author to Carl Hiaasen, who also manages to blend humour and thriller together with satire.
From my point of view, the best news is that this is not a new book, but is a few years old, and Mr Brookmyre wrote several previous books and has written several since, so I now have another half dozen or so books I can hunt down. For me its like discovering a new author, but not having to wait for him to write another book because I have a backlog to catch up on.
I would recommend this to just about anyone.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a big boy did it and ran away, 4 April 2003
I loved this book. Took me a while to get into it, especially as I started it on the airplane home and the first chapter is all about a terrorist attack on a plane. But once i got passed this, I couldn't put it down. Brookmyre is an excellent writer and I can't wait to read some of his other books. I'd recommend this to anyone who likes a bit of a mystery and can relate to the black hunmour.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A return to form, 6 Nov 2001
By A Customer
I too found Boiling a Frog a bit below par for Christopher Brookmyre, who has quickly established himself as one of my favourite authors. He does this genre with panache and wit and not too much violence. I didn't find this one as good as 'One fine day' for example, but was a pretty good read nonetheless. I had some problems at the end with visualisation of all the goings on, but that didn't really reduce my interest or enjoyment. A good book, and (surely coincidentally) very topical.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not Brookmyyre's page turning usual offfering, 10 Dec 2012
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I found this a frustrating book. The idea was good and some of the characters were ok but there were too many diversions into what I thought were needless mini biographies of the characters.
Just as I felt the plot was gaining pace and my interest would rise it would divert into one of these needless forrays which added little to the story.I found myself skipping sections to get back to the plot which is not a good sign.

Brookmyre's books are usually of a far higher quality than this.
Dissapointed.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Lighter Side of Terror, 29 Jan 2009
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This review is from: A Big Boy Did It And Ran Away (Abacus Books) (Paperback)
2001. Not a year to write a comedy book surrounding mass acts of terror, but a year that did see the release of Christopher Brookmyre's `A Big Boy Did it and Ran Away'. Obviously Brookmyre had no idea when writing this book the events that occurred in September of that year, but as a reader I could not help but feel it. This is ostensibly a very dark comedy novel that tries to explain away some of the mystery of terrorists - Brookmyre paints them as arrogant, self obsessives, undeserving of any level of intelligence that people may give them the benefit of doubt for. When he is tackling these issues the book is at its best. The opening sequence and final action set piece are fantastic.

One criticism is that Brookmyre likes to overindulge in character set up. In some books this leaves you a little bored. However, here Brookmyre has created a central threesome that you want to know more about and the 500 pages are just about justified. The one area that I did not like was the school children. I have never found Brookmyre's portrayal of teenagers authentic and that is the case here again. `Big Boy' manages to combine dark humour with some very poignant moments. Brookmyre is a class author and he is able to take you on some rather sinister rides. This is certainly one of his better books and worth a read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Got a couple of days spare, read this book!, 24 Feb 2002
Liked the cover, and then found myself stuck in Belgium with nothing to do for two days. This book saved my life, but at the same time if i had had to work it would have driven me nuts. Could not put the book down.
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A Big Boy Did It And Ran Away (Abacus Books)
A Big Boy Did It And Ran Away (Abacus Books) by Christopher Brookmyre (Paperback - 3 July 2003)
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