I saw David Six’s tweet about his book, and I was in the mood for a suspense novel – right time, right place, you could say. So I surfed over to Amazon and downloaded his book: The Time it Takes to Blink.
Although I still can’t figure out from where the name is derived; nonetheless, I really enjoyed the book. His characters are engaging, relatable, and memorable. The main character, Frank Bruno, portrayed as a might-as-well-be homeless guy, living in an abandoned gas station and passes the day so drunk he doesn’t realize, it appears, that the tide pool from which he fishes every day, never garners any fish.
But yet, there is something-something that makes you like this guy, want to cheer for this guy, Frank Bruno. I wasn’t sure why at first, but slowly his story unravels, and any reader would be hard-pressed not to cheer on Frank Bruno. David Six does a masterful job of doling out the details of Frank’s backs story, intriguingly reeling you in with his fishing, Schlitz, and Anchor Steam beer.
His helper ally Rita “Sally” Salvanian, Frank’s cop-partner ten years ago and now Lieutenant, drags Frank out of his ten-year funk with the very same case that devastated his life and bullied him into living hell. She is independent, successful, driven, sarcastic, and just what Frank needs to end his self-pity and start living again.
The final two memorable characters I’ll mention are Jeja, a twenty-two-year-old neighborhood gang-avoider and want-a-be cop, and his grandmother who raised him. Although these are supporting characters, they are unique, fun, and people I’d like to know and definitely want to see in the sequel. Jeja is real, scared, insecure but outwardly confident, loyal, and clearly understands the right side of the road, while trying desperately to avoid the left, in a community where left is right.
His grandma, who raised him? Well, what can I say about a petite, elderly woman who has the local neighborhood gang leader eating out of her hand and calling her ma’am? Gotta respect that — and if you don’t — she’ll set you straight.
In addition to great characters, the plot is well timed, fast pace, and compelling. I know it sounds cliche, but it was hard to put the book down — even at 1:00 am with a 5:00 am wake-up call.
The tagline: A novel of suspense and horror. The horror is a mix of Hannibal-like crazy (the recent television version without the cannibalism but with all the weird who-thinks-of-this-ugly-human-horror stuff) and the BTK-like killer (Denise Vader who bound, tortured and killed ten people between 1974 – 1992). It can get a bit gruesome, but Six never crossed the salacious line. There was one scene where the reader learns a bit about the perp’s personal habits that, although totally weird and creepy, gives the reader a solid understanding of how off this guy really is – and the most horrific part – he appears normal to the rest of the world.
Any room for improvement? For characters and plot, Six gets five stars. Pacing and voice. five stars. The only area where it got a bit distracting is his use of smilies and metaphors. Usually a great trait for a writer, but Six’s overuse could be toned down, for me. That said, his ability to conjure up an image with unique and crystal clear images was superior to most.
I highly recommend David Six’s The Time it Takes to Blink: A Novel of Suspense & Horror, and I’m looking forward to the next adventure of Frank Bruno. Did I forget to mention the unexpected twist at the end? You won’t feel cheated, all the clues are there but yet, it will stupefy you.