Thursday, January 21, 2016

Review: Black Dragon by Amos Keppler

  When you read a Keppler-novel you get a complex story where it’s downright impossible to guess the ending. You certainly don’t get a thorough explanation of the plot on the first page or something. The story is shown, not told.
  You have to be both a curious and aware human being to find out what’s going on and that’s great. There’s way too little complex storytelling out there.
  The reader is pulled into a world where superhuman powers have become commonplace, and we are shown the effects of that, both on individuals and society as a whole. We witness the true ramifications on a society where super-powered individuals and groups are present, how the real-world dynamics are completely different from what is shown in comic books. Even though there are similarities, this is something completely different from other stories featuring costumed and superhuman vigilantes.
  The novel is 175 000 words, far thicker than most books. It needs to be in order to describe in necessary detail the story as it progresses.
  Vigilantes and crime fighters aren't described as positive forces at all. What we see unfold is fascism in its most sinister form. It's actually one of the best descriptions of it I've ever read. We are shown how initially well-meaning people can change and become pretty much what they initially despised, something politicians and others starting adult life as idealists certainly should take to heart.
  It also shows in excellent ways how a cruel society crushes the human spirit until almost nothing is left but ashes.
  There are burning emotions, sizzling passion and hatred here, making me shake in my boots.
  The novel contains themes and angles not covered in most books I’ve read and most certainly not in comic books.
  This is a deeply troubling book. It starts off fairly modest, but slowly grows darker, as you flip the pages.

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