Short Take: “Come and Get Us,” James Patterson and Shan Serafin

Pros: LOVE the main character’s narrative voice
Cons:
Rating: 5 out of 5

“Bookshot.” What a great name for a type of book short enough to be downed in one quick shot, just like whiskey (especially in a season when everyone’s main character seems to be a whiskey-based alcoholic–except this one). I like it better than “novella”, which is, I think, a term most people aren’t that familiar with. Come and Get Us (BookShots), by James Patterson and Shan Serafin, was a great short read. Corporate lawyer Aaron Cooper hasn’t told his wife Miranda why the two of them and their toddler, Sierra, have to go meet a man named Jed, but it’s going to become very important to all of them when a vehicle behind them sends them crashing off the road and into a ravine. Aaron is badly injured, and in order to travel at a speed that’ll give Miranda any chance of finding help in time, she has to leave little Sierra with Aaron.

I love Miranda’s inner voice; she’s snarky without being overly biting. It’s also the sort of snark that you can imagine yourself using to keep yourself sane as you race to find help and escape some enemies that crop up. There aren’t many characters in here, but the authors put a surprising amount of personality into them in the short space. Miranda and her enemies cross paths in several interesting ways. Miranda in some ways is a soccer mom, but she has some athletic history that gives her a boost. Still, it flavors her thoughts:

1. I heard a pop.
2. I crashed into an obstacle …
3. I realized it was a man.
4. He and I locked eyes in a moment of mutual shock.
5. We agreed not to be friends.

I’m rather psyched to pick out a bunch more of these “bookshots”, especially when trying to waste time.

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