Thursday, August 27, 2009

Caine Black Knife - Mini Review

"Caine Black Knife" is the third in the series of books centered on the adventures of actor/unstoppable assassin, Hari Michaelson, and is a must read for fans of talented author Matthew Stover. However...

Lacking the "big story" component of the first two books (fate of two worlds hanging in the balance, etc), CBK is also a bit of a jumble -- mixing a present day mini-adventure with a series of flashbacks about how Hari made his bones and became the mega star, Caine.

Personally, I would have preferred it if Mr. Stover had stuck to one story or the other as, for me, this style of back and forth storytelling tends to be more distracting than enjoyable -- just not my thing. And because of these flashbacks CBK has the same sort of mild "oh, that's why" feel that you get from reading the appendixes in LOTR -- enjoyable enough for what they reveal, but not as satisfying as the master's main work.

Overall, Mr. Stover's skill as a writer is evident in CBK and while Caine is still the charismatic rogue that made me love the character in the first books, I guess what I really would have liked was one, fully expanded story with much higher stakes.

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