Day of the Dead Paperback – 13 Sep 2012
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Praise for YEAR OF THE TIGER:
‘A compelling debut that takes you deep into the dangerous, complicated heart of modern China, with a tough and appealing heroine in Ellie’ Jeff Abbott, author of FEAR
‘Lisa Brackman’s novel gets off to a fast start and never lets up…Ellie is a perfect spunky heroine…Be prepared for a wild ride’ New York Times Book Review
‘An electrifying debut … The China scenes are fast paced and strikingly atmospheric, and Ellie's backstory―her and Trey's return from combat is tough, sad, and endearing―is given in doses that perfectly complement the central action … The book's exotic setting and tough heroine will definitely appeal to fans of Stieg Larsson’ Publisher’s Weekly, Starred Review
‘A remarkable debut by Lisa Brackman’ Seattle Times
‘Lisa Brackman’s debut novel is as slick and smart as an alley cat … The result is a wildly original read … Even more remarkable is her enfant terrible protagonist: 26-year-old Ellie is tough, snarky and immensely likeable. Through her voice Brackman never falls into the trite and tired trap of so many foreigners who write about an ‘exotic’ China. Beijing in Year of the Tiger is as it is in real life’ Time Out: Beijing
‘A gripping ex-pat nightmare that unfolds with superb pacing … it makes you damned glad your life is boring’ Miami Herald
‘Brackman's experience in the motion picture industry is evident. A gritty and intriguing tale of terror that draws in the reader with each page; Brackman is a new writer to watch’ Library Journal
About the Author
Lisa Brackman has worked as an executive at a major motion picture studio, an issues researcher in a presidential campaign, and as the singer-songwriter & bassist in an LA rock band. She's lived and travelled extensively in China. Brackman is a southern California native and lives in Venice, CA. YEAR OF THE TIGER is her first novel.
Top customer reviews
Michelle is recently widowed and escapes to Mexico hoping to find rest and relaxation. She meets Daniel soon after she arrives and this chance meeting ends with her being immersed in the seamier side of Mexican life.
The book begins as a passable thriller but becomes increasingly implausible as it goes along, it also seems poorly planned and several threads of the story just disappear without ever being resolved (this was also the case with the first book.) There's very little sense of place and it ends really abruptly.
This book might be good for a flight or as something to read if you want something you don't have to think too much about but it wasn't great, if I'm honest.
Michelle is so passive in this book that I was almost screaming for her to take the initiative rather than just whining or accepting what other people did to her. The first actual action that Michelle took to change things happened on page 365 (just 6 pages from the end) and it was too late to restore my opinion of her character.
Other than the problem with Michelle's character I found the book very vague about who killed who and why. We never really found out what Danny was doing and who Gary was, not to mention other assorted characters such as Oscar, Emma and Carl - after reading the whole book I am still not sure on whose side (if any) these characters were. The ending is also very vague and doesn't really come to any sort of a conclusion but that didn't really matter as it was in keeping with the rest of the book.
The premise for this book was good but the main character needed to be much stronger and the details of the plot needed to be nailed down more. The book didn't really work for me at all.
Who is the sexy Daniel, and why does he seem to have so many enemies? Who can tell Michelle what is going on and who can she trust?
I really enjoyed Lisa Brackman's first novel, Year of the Tiger, about an American woman in China, but this one was a bit disappointing by comparison. Both feature heroines stumbling into all kinds of trouble, but they are quite different. I really liked Ellie's first person narrative in Year of the Tiger, whereas this story is told in the third person, and Michelle doesn't seem as interesting or engaging as Ellie. Brackman's other novel had a lot more to say about the country that it was set in.
I also found the plot a bit unsatisfactory.
This is an ok thriller for all my griping, but I am hoping Brackman's next novel, featuring Ellie again, is as good as her first.
Whilst on the beach one day she meets Daniel, a handsome courteous young man. They talk and Michelle invites him to her hotel. Michelle is awoken by a noise and finds two men in the room. Daniel jumps out of bed, but one man strikes him with a heavy pistol leaving Daniel injured before the intruders escape over the balcony.
Michelle visits the hospital to see Daniel, but finds that he has been discharged and has disappeared. She decides to go home, but her taxi is stopped by the local police. Drugs are found in her bag, she is thrown into jail and subsequently rescued by a stranger, Gary. He helps her by finding a new hotel for her, but he has a 'favour' to ask. She should associate with Daniel when he returns and report anything about him to Gary.
Our heroine finds out that Daniel flies planes carrying assorted cargoes. Gary, appears to be a businessman, but she suspects a possible government agent.
Now she finds herself not knowing which man to trust. Then one of Daniel's friends, Ned, is murdered. She finds herself in danger when another of Daniel's friends, Charlie, is also murdered. Michelle again decides to go home as quickly as she can, but whilst walking back to her hotel she is captured by an unknown man to be taken - where - and will hers be the next body to be found.
The book seems to have a rather run-of-the-mill storyline. There is far too much description of what Michelle dresses in when getting out of bed or going to a party. This aspect also features with other characters, male and female. All the heroine seems to do is drift from one place to another with Daniel or Gary and sometimes with another character in the story, drinking alcohol in some form.
Daniel and Gary are rather predictable stereotypes - good looking, charming and with plenty of money. Other major women characters who appear in the story also drift around and again have plenty of money.
The writing is not outstanding - the limited action sequences are nicely portrayed, but on the whole a bland narrative with an unnecessary over-use of the 'f' word.
The ending is vague, but possibly the author has left this as a preparation for a 'what happens next' sequel.
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Michelle a widow and holidaying in Mexico (scary enough for anyone but a...Read more