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2013 Stuff Read, #1

1. Jam, by Yahtzee CroshawJam

I'll admit it, there was one overriding reason why I chose to read this book: I love Croshaw's weekly video game reviews for The Escapist. They are so good that I read them even though I very rarely actually play any of the games he reviews. In fact, I have never even played the game for what I consider the greatest video game review ever written. To be fair, that has a lot to do with the fact that Croshaw panned the game in question. However, if it had been a laudatory review, I may very well have purchased it based on his review alone.

Given the amount of joy I've gotten from his reviews, it felt like I absolutely, positively read one of his novels. Sadly, I didn't enjoy his second novel as much as I enjoyed his non-fiction writing. To be fair, that was an awfully high bar to clear. In the end, I liked Jam well enough -- a pleasantly diverting, apocalyptic near-future story about a handful of Australians attempting to survive when a strawberry-scented, amoebic lifeform devours all carbon-based life and objects in Brisbane. Croshaw's brand of humor was evident throughout and the characters were certainly amusing. However, the book as a whole was about as filling as, well, a strawberry sandwich on Wonder bread. Reader reviews on Amazon suggest that I should've started off with his first novel, Mogworld. However, while I enjoy the occasional run-in with comic fantasy (a genre Jam more closely aligns with than apocalyptic fiction), it may be a while before I seek out that first novel. Nothing against Croshaw, it's just that there's a lot of comic fantasy out there, and I may want to see if another author makes a better go of it.

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thetalkingmoose
Feb. 8th, 2013 03:50 pm (UTC)
Is it possible -- I could be misremembering entirely here -- that part of the reason he went off on historical accuracy is that the series started off (or at some point) starting laying claim to that particular mantle? If you don't recall either, there's no point in looking it up -- it really isn't *that* important. However, it might explain why it seemed to really drive him bonkers.