Journalist Cayne Sola wants the big story on the games, and not even the fiercest warrior will stop her. Billionaire Ellis Mtumbo Shaw has everything except combat fame, but an untested drug puts that within his reach. Their fates will entwine - and be decided - in the bloody arena of the Flex.
©2006 Steve Perry; (P)2009 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
"Perry excels at hard-boiled writing, flashing dialogue, and stripped-down action." (Oregonian)
As much Martial Arts Adventure as Science Fiction, well narated and presented. Light, fast, entertaining, and a great way to spend a few hours.
The book may be a little long but Steve Perry makes it worth the time if you got time. Even though it has some 'other world' jargon it's pretty easy to understand what is implied and for me the main character and simple storyline makes it a good listen. The only thing I didn't like was that the fight scenes didn't portray any pain or emotion when someone was fatally wounded.
A Musashi Flex is a prequel to the Matador series it is simple story with a compelling world and convincing characters. The narrator had a fantastic delivery. If you enjoy space opera and combat I think you'll enjoy this book.
One of the best books revolving around the martial arts and it's practitioners I have come across.
Full characters well fleshed out and clear, interactions plausible, settings and history/background well and elegantly described. The story moved along quickly and caught me up in it from the get-go.
Anyone into military scifi, the battles in spaceopera, even the one on one combat of epic fantasy will enjoy this immensely.
My thanks to Steve Perry for a great book, and to Joe Barret for distinct, interesting, well acted, and consistent characters.
Of note is the hero, and resident badass, is portrayed with a (passable - work on the "I", Joe) Southern accent which is as it should be.
A very simple, straight forward and well told story that I found quite enjoyable. It felt more like a short story rather than a full length novel, but that was alright with me. I just wish there were other Steve Perry, Matador Series novels available to sample. The guy has written so many, perhaps audible will acquire more.
The narrator was unknown to me, not that I'm familiar with every reader, but he did a great job as well.
One of my favorite because of its all-around quality: great story, characterization and performance; exciting and thought-provoking. I especially like the perspective of a protagonist who has attained mastery through life-long discipline and ongoing flexibility, a mastery that no longer seeks to prop up the ego or diminish the various capacities of others, and so, can recognize his own past failings in the posturing of others -- and take advantage of that hard-won knowledge when pushed to it.
The same kind of exploration concerning self-mastery, its callouses and its relative price and worth over time, is likewise explored in two other of my favorites: The Fencing Master by Arturo Perez-Reverte and The Last Gunfighter series by William Johnstone. All three have a "pulp" quality that all the more endearingly frames such "action-thrillers" given that there is actually much gravitas seamlessly tucked into these masterpieces of the genre, call it, a dogged persistence of vitality amidst a correspondingly weathered, self-effacing yet somehow un-tragic sensibility.
Barrett attains here something like the "sublime" performance most fully realized in the telling of Will Patton. By "sublime" I mean that the narrator is fully himself yet fully self-effaced into the characters and context. A simplicity and direct attunement of astonishing artistry and, indeed, artifice. This is pretending of the first order: It takes a great actor to be so completely "not acting" at all.
I write reviews to help readers, not to win votes. My reviews are my honest opinion whether popular or not. I hope they help you. ;)
I enjoy Steve Perry's novels. This is an action packed read. One interesting thing is this novel is the basis of several of his other novels within the same universe. They aren't exactly a series, just various one shot novels that are connected by an overarching story arch. My only regret is that the author started making more money doing licensed books such as aliens and really stopped coming up with his own material.
Lots of action and a good overall plot.
He did a so-so job of differentiating characters. He is passable but doesn't have a great range.
Not really, this is a fun quick read.
A great book. The narrarator is average, but doesn't ruin the story. I''d advise taking a look as Steve Perry is a good author who does great action series. It isn't on audio but everyone should read his novel "The Man Who Never Missed". Awsome stuff!
Another book in Steve Perry's "Matador" series is always great for the soul. Perry's pacing is perfect. The stories never get boring. I just wish the book was a little longer like "Black Steel".
I compare this book to the "Da Vinci Code" because I never lost interest.
Clear, easy to understand. Great "acting-out" of characters.
Yes and no. Yes because I could not stop listen. No because I did not want it to end.
I would love all of Steve Perry's Matador series books to be on audio books (including the "Omega Cage") and read by Joe Barrett.
Overall, this is a mediocre story. The sci-fi aspects are rather peripheral to the main plot; the temporal placement being some vague time period in the distant future after much settlement throughout the galaxy has occurred. Except for some modest improvements in medical technologies, there is little to distinguish characters from people today (ftl travel is merely taken as a given).
The basic plot reviews around an non-stop fighting tournament. Players compete by challenging higher ranked player in anything from hand to hand to knives and apparently even projectile weapons, but without any technological enhancements. Major characters includes a wealthy billionaire pharmaceutical kingpin who wants to reach the top rank by chemical enhancement and an aging contender who is introspective and develops a novel fighting method.
The major deficiency with the story lies in the secretive nature of the action. The matches take place almost in secret and some ill-defined gruop of referees adjudicate outcomes to ensure fairness. The fighters themselves get by on endorsements (knives, weapons, fihgting schools, etc.). This is the problem: for the story to work, the secretive activity is required, but it's hard to imagine in an even more technologically advanced civilization that the population would care about endorsement and display no desire to see all the action. It's hard to imagine that a whole industry catering to bringing the action to the public would not have evolved.
The ending resolves the conflict through a typical Asian conclusion to many martial arts films where the hero (who possesses a traditional Eastern philosophy) is able to force his enemy to see beyond his greed and blind ambition and becomes a better person dedicated to truth and justice.
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