Review of Recon

Okay, so I’ve been away from blogging for a bit. Life has a way of derailing and taking over. But I’m doing my best to getting my routine back on track. Consequently, I’ve been able to get some reading and reviewing done. First up is Recon by Tarah Benner.  3/5 stars

Overall, I enjoyed Recon. It’s a fast read, but it’s not very deep. The chapters basically alternate between Eli and Harper in 1st POV, but both sound very similar. A problem a find very common to most authors who use this technique. When alternating POVs like this one must change the vocabulary, phrasing, and rhythm in order to change the character’s voice. Few authors convincingly do this.

Eli and Harper’s on again/off again relationship was convincing until the end. Come on Eli. You’re into her. She’s getting released from being a cadet soon enough and you brush her off. It’s a bit old.

The compound was mostly convincing, but some of the jargon seemed off. These are people who have been locked away for at least 50 years, yet they sound just like the early 21st century. Plus, young adults who’ve never seen the world prior the war understand pre-war contexts?

Seems like it was easier for the author to write about our present day world in a compound rather than imagine how language and slang would change in 50+ years after being locked away.

I’m reading the second book and I’m thinking what I like about this first book, its quickness, its lightness, its somewhat compelling characters, might be dissipating. Will update soon.

UPDATE: I forgot to mention how I found the author’s tendency to narrate what the other characters were feeling through the POV of Eli and Harper. This wasn’t done with a “gee, I wonder how they’re feeling” but a certain confidence as if the character knew without doubt how the other people felt without the reader seeing any evidence of it. Don’t tell me, show me. With 1st person, there’s no way another person can know how another person is feeling or what they are thinking without the other person stating it.

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