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Shelf Indulgence

Books. Reviews.

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Aftermath
Chuck Wendig
Dhalgren
Samuel R. Delany
Jackals
Charles L. Grant

Every Last Drop

Every Last Drop - Charlie Huston This is what I thought was the last book in the Joe Pitt/Vampyre series, and it’s a book that I’ve had hanging around the house for several months. I mean, I like Charlie Huston’s stories, and when it comes to dialog, I honestly can’t think of anyone who writes it sharper and more effectively than he does, but the gritty, dark-noir novels he get tend to get repetitious. At this point, I was just reading this book to finish out the series and see how certain things that happened at the end of the last novel got resolved. Now, I feel like I’m going to need to read the next one, too, since not a whole lot gets resolved in this novel.

Things start off dark and serious in this book, and then just keep going in that direction. It reminded me a little of the final volume in the Hank Thompson trilogy, also by Huston. The main character in both had been taken along a dark journey, mostly by accident, partly by making some pretty dumb decisions, and wound up at their lowest points by the last book. I guess that makes sense, dramatically — you want to see the protagonist redeem himself by the end of it all — but sometimes it’s hard to be sympathetic with him, since a lot of the terrible things happening to him are happening because of his own actions. With Every Last Drop, I feel like little happens. Like every other Fables collection, this book felt more like a transitional novel to help set up the events of the next book.

There’s nothing new with this book, as far as Huston’s books go, but that’s not really a bad thing. His stories still read with a clarity that I don’t see in many writers’ books, and they rarely disappoint. Sometimes just knowing that you can depend on a writer to tell a good tale, without getting hung up on how original or important it may be, is all you need.