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Secret Dead Men (2005)

Secret Dead Men (2005)

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3.58 of 5 Votes: 1
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1930997590 (ISBN13: 9781930997592)
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About book Secret Dead Men (2005)

SECRET DEAD MEN starts well enough with a creative opening narrative and then an intriguing supernatural/urban fantasy twist leading into the main thrust of the plot. Swierczynski does a deft job with the first 3/4 of the novel merging a standard procedural/detective story with elements of pulp sci-fi and archetypes more in line with 1930's radio plays than hard boiled modern crime fiction. SECRET DEAD MEN holds together until the supernatural premise takes over and the story and characters fall apart. The pacing and prose that sited the story so well fall victim to the worst of sci-fi/fantasy tropes - the author's apparent need to indulge every descriptive and narrative fancy derived from the "concept" takes away from the actual narrative. Everything that was original and intriguing becomes overused and so repetitive that the entire idea is tired before the story ends. This is a real shame because there are a bunch of really interesting stories smashed together in the last third of this novel. It's almost as if the author pitched a smal series o books and the publishing company told him he only had one book to cram all of his ideas into. That's the downfall of this book, too many ideas. The amin issue is not the writing, but the over writing. The supernatural theme of the book, the main character's existence as a sentient spirit inhabiting a human body to capture other souls, becomes so overused and over-described it loses all sense of mystery. Modern authors need to realize that not every single aspect of their idea needs to be explored or explained. If the characters are strong enough and the ideas are interesting, the audience does not need to be spoon fed the imaginary physics and blueprints of the fantasy reality the author has in their head.SECRET DEAD MEN could have been a really great opening book in a serie if the plot had been able to fester and congeal a bit more. As it exists now, it feels rushed and underdone, despite the originality of the premise.

You can tell it's the author's first book, but you can't help but be drawn in. It's one of these books that are almost clumsy, but the sheer amount of imagination holds you on. I want, no, NEED a brain hotel. This innovation allows the protagonist to store the souls he collects. Inside the brain hotel, anything is possible, limited by each soul's imagination. They are allowed to craft their own reality in their quarters, with the expectation that they will contribute with information whenever the proprietor of the hotel, in this case, Del Farmer, calls upon them.Kinda like Inception, only with dead bodies. It gets really crazy near the end, and the coincidences that abound are resolved into a strange mess that only Swierczynski could dream up. A genuine and enjoyable read that showcases the beginning of one of the literary world's rising stars.

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SECRET DEAD MEN (Soul Catcher-Philadelphia-Cont) – VGDuane Swierczynski – 1st mysteryPointBlank, 2005- HardcoverDel Farmer is a detective with a difference. He solves crimes by collecting souls and keeping them in the Brain Hotel within him. While he is trying to track down and destroy The Association, one of his souls, Brad, demands Del find the killer of Brad's wife first. But Del has the most trouble when trying to solve a crime becomes a struggle for control from within.*** This is a book that is different, fun, and unusual. I found having a little trouble keeping track of the characters at times, but enjoyed the writing, mix of characters and unique concept behind it all. A very enjoyable read.

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