VALLEJO, CA, United States | Member Since 2013
YOU was a bitter-sweet experience for me. On one hand, it revisited a period of video gaming that was exciting to be a part of, and having been in the gaming industry at the time, it was certainly faithful to the game design process and mentality. The author clearly has a reverence for 90s gaming, and that was enjoyable to discover.
The characters and story, however, were completely forgettable to me. Even as a self-identifying geek gamer of the era, I never attached myself to anyone in the story, and found it very hard to care about them or what they were doing.
An attempt is made to bridge the real world and the game world by means of some clever computer code (and possible mental trauma) that never quite defines itself and ultimately goes nowhere. It's a safe book that explores some quaint what-if scenarios surrounding a game franchise's evolution, but as for thrills and suspense, I felt neither.
I loved Soon I Will Be Invincible by Grossman and would definitely read anything by him going forward despite my tepid experience with YOU.
I've read the paperback at least a dozen times. The story permeates me on so many levels that each read leaves me emotional despite knowing what will happen.
Gary Sinise does a masterful job with pacing and accent, such that I am further propelled into the land of 1920s migratory workers and their curious interactions.
From start to finish this story is a wonderful trip back to a time long past. The interaction of George and Lennie is iconic, touching and tragic. The era and the industry depicted may be gone, but the concepts of loyalty, friendship and the American Dream are transcendent and are what the book ultimately rests on.
King's Shining is far and above the story presented in the film adaptation. With this version you are provided with context and an opportunity to relate to the main characters. Jack's slow decline into madness is written (and narrated) in such a way where I felt right there with him at times.
My only gripe is that the genuinely horrific parts were too far between. My suspense level was allowed to drop to zero a few times while we were taken back to discover the history of the hotel or the exploration of character back story. All of it necessary to provide framework and explanation, but it didn't serve the thrills and chills aspect for me.
If you're looking for a great depiction of someone slowly going mad and possibly homicidal due to cabin fever and how that works out for him, his wife and their gifted son while they purposefully lock themselves in a confined space over the winter... this book is for you.
If you're looking for a 16-hour Jack Nicholson impression because you liked the movie's one-liners, you won't be pleased.
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