Book Review: Flex by Ferrett Steinmetz

21965714Title: Flex

Author: Ferrett Steinmetz

Genre: Fantasy, Urban Fantasy, Fiction, Magic, Science Fiction, Paranormal, Supernatural, Alternate History

Publisher: Angry Robot

Published: March 3, 2015

Page Amount: 429 pages

Blurb From GoodreadsFLEX: Distilled magic in crystal form. The most dangerous drug in the world. Snort it, and you can create incredible coincidences to live the life of your dreams. FLUX: The backlash from snorting Flex. The universe hates magic and tries to rebalance the odds; maybe you survive the horrendous accidents the Flex inflicts, maybe you don’t. PAUL TSABO: The obsessed bureaucromancer who’s turned paperwork into a magical Beast that can rewrite rental agreements, conjure rented cars from nowhere, track down anyone who’s ever filled out a form.

Why Read: I love alternate history books. I can’t say I remember exactly how I found out about Flex, but it reminded me a lot of the Alice movie that aired on Syfy some time ago. There’s nothing like a good drug-like book about magic… and I have to say, I wasn’t expecting the idea of a bureaucromancer, but I loved it.

Review: Argh, I have so many feelings concerning this book. I’m set on my rating of 2, which is quite low for me.. but I can’t help but wonder if I’m not giving it a proper chance. I listened to this at work.. a new trend for me, and for the first half of the audio book – I enjoyed it. The characters sounded fine and the plot was going well. I wasn’t particularly enchanted, but I also wasn’t put off unnecessarily by anything. THEN. Then came the voice used for the daughter, and I know I shouldn’t be focusing on it quite so much – but I could not handle the voice used to portray the daughter. It was high-pitched, annoying and even the way she spoke was so… so… I’m at a loss for words.

Let me start over. The book itself is fine. The writing is all fine, and if I was reading the book – I think I would enjoy it. The narrative builds this great conversation between magic and the different forms that it takes, whether it be video games or bureaucracy. Really, I’m not making this up – it’s a beautiful way to describe magic and how it takes to different people based on what you love. The society that was created as a back drop for this story was also really beautifully created. I love the concept of insurance companies refusing to insure against magic, and that they have a special bureaucratic sector specifically to make sure they can get out of paying for people’s injuries because there was magic involved. The only problem was that child’s voice. I couldn’t stand it. So maybe that’s not a good reason to give the book a 2/5 stars… but the amount of times I almost stopped reading the book alone gave me reason for pause.

So definitely read this book and don’t listen to it… if you’re going to read it at all. I may be a little bit bias here, but such is the life of a reviewer.

Rating: 2/5 Stars

One Comment Add yours

  1. For the record, the author says that’s a totally fair critique. 🙂

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