In Blade of Hearts, hear some of the back story of a handful of Basil's recurring major characters. Find out about the past of Kharzai Ghiassi ("Karl's Last Flight"), Mojo Johnson ("65 Below"), and Mike Farris ("Faithful Warrior") - as well as others. Stories in the collection include:
"Blade of Hearts": Violent modern day pirates have taken a missionary vessel for ransom, and they are not playing around. Colonel Galang, the pirate leader, has a secret, but so does Galang's second in command. With the US Marines commanded by a young Captain Mike Farris and Gunnery Sergeant Marcus 'Mojo' Johnson hot on their tails, things get hot fast.
"The Plumber": When a broken hot water tank puts romance on the ice, Phil's day goes from bad to worse to deadly.
"Red Ghost": Some young men learn that it's not wise to mess with older men, you don't know where they've been or what they're still hanging on to.
"Storyman": Meet Kharzai Ghiassi, and his first taste of what will become his life work.
I must say I don't much care for short stories, the longer the better. Because it seems like just when you start to get into them, their over. These are an exception, as far as short stories go, they were excellent.
Is there anything you would change about this book?
My Review - Disclaimer - I RARELY listen to short stories as they frustrate me. So please remember this as you read my review.
Blade of Hearts
I really appreciated it but it was a bit confusing to follow. It felt like too much was crammed into the short time. It really intrigued me, however the scenes changed so quickly & there were a lot of characters to get to know, but no time to. It was hard for me to follow who was who and what the bad guy was doing or who he was. Perhaps it is me who requires the extra time, others may be able to follow without confusion.
I'd encourage the author to write a full-length version-I would be a customer- as it would cover a lot of the things in this short. If he did allow more time, this reader would be better able to sort out the characters and would better understand the dynamics and relationship relationships.
Overall, I did like it but found it a bit confusing because of time restraints.
The Plumber – this short had some really powerful moments. The husband needs to go to the home improvement store to fix the hot water in the shower so he and his wife can continue their conservation of water.
Suddenly they are involved in a hostage type situation and series of events unfold. It was worth my time to listen and had me snickering as well as paying attention to the seriousness of the situation. Another that I'd LOVE to hear at full-length but was perfect, understandable and tied up nicely as it ended.
Red Ghost - In the final book we meet a main character who was pivotal in the first book ( Novella). I think that if that were first it would've helped me by shedding light on who this guy it.
This was too short a short, that introduced us to different characters. In Red Ghost it was very difficult for me to follow the story, but I may have to listen again. What I think I understood was that it was about an elderly gentleman/former serviceman who is robbed by some younger guys. But I was not really able to follow the red ghost part of it. It may have been that he was in special forces and got a new name and identity but other than that it was a bit tough for me to follow because of many details.
Again, I encourage the author to write or expand this book -its only drawback was too much info in too little time.
Narrator (author is well): He is one of the best male narrators that I've heard. He had to do male and female characters and they were believable [except for the high-pitched person with the secret.]
Credit and/or $ Worthiness: I would not use one of my credits for this short story HOWEVER if the author work to expand his first story into a full-length seven or eight hour listen, I would very seriously consider using a credit. I was fortunate to be *to be chosen to listen to this book in exchange for my thoughts and reviews.*
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