Holding Their Own II: The Independents Paperback – 26 Apr 2012
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"Holding Their Own II: The Independents" picks up where the first book left off, and the author charges out of the gate without skipping a beat. As with the first book, I found myself reading late into the night, unable to put it down. Book 2 does fill in a little more back story on the collapse, and introduces a new twist with a new group called "The Independents" trying to form a new government to help rescue what's left of the country.
The story is fast paced and extremely well written. I originally balked at the "high" price of this book, but it was worth every penny. If you haven't read the first book, Holding Their Own, go back and read that first. While it's not a prerequisite, you'll enjoy the second book more if you read them in order. Either way, I highly recommend both books, and I can't wait for Book 3.
The first in this series was $10 and was readable, although poorly narrated, described and researched. The editing was acceptable, but only just. The second book (the one this review is under)is 167 pages. That's roughly half the length of the first installment, and at least 30% of it is obvious filler. It comes in at a price of $9.00.
I can hear the objections now, talking about how new authors need to be supported. I don't disagree, but these sad examples (and I don't limit the indictment just to these 2 books) don't merit a price of $2 per digital copy.
IMHO, if an author is going to charge the same price as offerings by main-stream talents, they should be prepared to endure the comparisons to those writers.
If I recall correctly, their journey from Houston to the ranch was retold through narrative no less than three times. I can understand doing this once for the benefit of those who had not read the first book. But anything more than once is just word count filler and fluff.
I struggled with POV several times; especially in the beginning. There were a few times when POV changed from one paragraph to the next. And one time, we went from Bishop’s POV to an omniscient POV; again, from one paragraph to the next. The super long chapters in this 217 page book made this even more confusing to me.
The editing was sloppy at best. There were a handful of typo’s which should have been caught. I’m also trying to figure out who Mata Tari is. I think the writer meant, Mata Hari.
The annoying comical banter from book one between Bishop and Terri continues in book two. It’s not that couples don’t talk this way, but it seems that that’s the only way these two communicate with one another; 24/7. And in the rare times when they do communicate in a serious manner needed to move the storyline forward, the dialogue and character actions are rife with soap opera worthy clichés.
I also thought this book was going to be about The Independents; a rogue, but powerful group of patriots that have organized in opposition to a wounded government trying to regain control. Nope. This book was about gold, and how Bishop deals with a Columbian drug lord whose wife and child were kidnapped by Mexican drug lords. Bishop is caught in the middle of this drama and has to deal with this throughout the book. The Independents are mentioned only sporadically here and there, and it’s only towards the end of the book that their storyline is addressed in any significant way.
One issue that I had and has nothing to do with the book or its author was; my 2 day guaranteed delivery turned out to be 4 days – an Amazon/UPS issue. Secondly, the font and the amount of words crammed into a single page were difficult to read. This may be a, blind as a bat issue, or a cost issue for the author. Sorry, I still like the feel of a real book and physically turning a page – no ebooks for me. Regardless, my two star rating is based solely on what I read.
I am now on the fence about buying and reading book III.
Holding Their Own II:The Independents
Reviewed by:Josh Haney
Joe Nobody is quite well known as a writer of in-depth non-fiction survival manuals filled with the kind of information that is gleaned from years of solid study and practice. But what happens when you take that same information and present it in a fictionalized account designed to entertain while it informs? In the case of his new book series Holding Their Own, you are given a hell of a ride.
Mr. Nobody has already released several books through Prepper Press including Holding Your Ground:Preparing For Defense If It All Falls Apart, The TEOTWAWKI Tuxedo:Formal Survival Attire, and Without Rule Of Law:Advanced Skills To Help You Survive. Each one of these volumes offers a plethora of highly detailed information, showcasing his knack for teaching tough topics in easy to understand terms. While some folks may suffer from the jump to fiction from non-fiction, this is not the case here. We are given great action sequences, likeable characters, and a wealth of practical knowledge presented in a fun yet informative style.
Holding Their Own: A Story Of Survival, the first book in the series, drops us a hair into the future, namely 2015, but closer to our own time than some may like to admit. The country is in the midst of another Great Depression, anarchy and chaos are boiling over into the streets, collapse is imminent, and we follow Bishop, an ex-military contractor, and his wife Terri as they try to make sense of the world around them and reach a modest retreat they have set up. They are skilled and prepared, though not so much that the tale becomes a farce, and their exploits are completely believable, a plus in a genre where sometimes fiction can run a little rampant.
I read this book and instantly wanted a sequel. Luckily for myself and all the others out there who loved Holding Their Own, Joe Nobody was already on the job, bringing us Holding Their Own II:The Independents.
Holding Their Own II: The Independents picks up right where the first book ended and doesn't let up. The story gets broader as the country rockets towards full on civil war and a growing resistance movement poses new threats. We find out more about the causes of the collapse, and are introduced to others who are attempting to survive, namely The Independents. This book adds a lot more to the plot, opening up new avenues for teaching skills to readers, and also opening the series to a third book.
While you don't have to read the first book to get into the second book, I personally think that it reads better back to back. And, though I don't normally discuss two books in one review, Holding Their Own flows well and comes across as one fluid story. I, for one, am quite anxious to see what happens next in the world of Holding Their Own.