Nothing Short of Dying Book Review

Nothing Short of Dying Book Review
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Title: Nothing Short of Dying
Author: Erik Storey
Published: August 16, 2016, Scribner
No. of Pages: 320
Cover Price: $26.00 Hardcover, $13.99 Kindle



Eric Storey has created a new protagonist, Clyde Barr, in the first novel of the series, Nothing Short of Dying, who is hard not to like, but very rough. Barr has recently been released from a Mexican prison after being a soldier and mercenary in Africa and third world countries, when he gets a phone call from his sister, Jen, begging for help. She has been taken by a drug lord who is using her to break into a US facility, where she works, to steal a key ingredient needed in his meth business; he plans to kill her afterward. Barr calls his other two sisters, who let him know they are disgusted and not willing to help either him or Jen. On his own, Barr begins to investigate the whereabouts of his sister, and gets into scrape after scrape, barely surviving. He meets up with old friends who “owe” him, and while they do help some, are less than willing.

Clyde Barr is a very unique character. Storey includes flashbacks into Barr’s childhood that help readers understand who he is and why he and Jen have problems. There is a fair amount of profanity and graphic violence (much of it “comic book” variety) as Barr goes about rescuing his sister; these are not high-class people he is dealing with (nor is he). Although Barr has been compared to Lee Child’s famous character Jack Reacher, the main similarities are that they are both loners and they both get themselves into trouble wherever they go. Barr does have a good heart, however, but it’s different to read about a hero who has no trouble with murder and violence in reaching his goals. Most readers won’t be able to relate to his less-than-believable-experiences, which makes the novel all the more interesting.

Storey’s writing is good; he is able to keep his readers on the edge of their seats. He has a way of making you care about his characters, and wanting them to succeed even though they aren’t exactly upstanding citizens. He is very good at building suspense, which does not decrease throughout the book.

This book is recommended for readers who like a little make-believe violence, interesting characters, and next-to-impossible scenarios. There is nothing frou-frou about this novel, and fans will want to pick up the subsequent novels as soon as they are off the press.

Special thanks to NetGalley for supplying a review copy of this book.

This book may be purchased at Amazon:
Nothing Short of Dying: A Clyde Barr Novel




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