Archive for the ‘Adult’ Category

REVIEW! End of Watch

Posted: September 24, 2012 in 5 star, Adult

End of Watch

5 out of 5 stars

I watched some of the publicity appearances that Jake Gyllenhaal made to hype up End of Watch and he spoke about how he went on ride-a-longs for a long time and bonded with his co-star, Michael Pena, in order to create a true friendship.  I have to say that they truly pulled it off, with perfection. Being a real police in Baltimore, I have longed for a movie that acurrately portrayed police officer, which was one of the reasons that I wrote Eliot, because book and movie portrayl of police is usually so far off base. Not this time.

They way they interact and talk to one another is spot on. Of course the drama of the situation that they find themselves in is a stretch, to create the drama, but the best parts of the movie were the interaction between the officers and the impact this has on their families. Very little discussion of police officers reflects what really goes on with police. We try to get through our day and end up with police as our only friends, not because we are arrongant police, rather because they become the only ones that understand the world that we live in. I truly hope that this movie will help people better understand that police officers are your neighbors and regular people that are placed in an impossible position, with their worst enemy being the department itself, which is addressed in the movie. Absolutely excellent!

Damage Control: A Jonathan Grave Thriller
By: John Gilstrap
Mass Market Paperback, 400 pages
Published June 5th 2012 by Kensington Publishing Corp.
ISBN 0786024933
edition languageEnglish

Overall: 4 out of 5 Stars

Maybe I’m too critical, haha, I am the Critical Critic, but when I see a mass market paperback, I frown. That’s what I did when I received Damage Control in a Goodreads giveaway. I have promised myself that I would conduct a thorough, unbiased, review of every book that an author sends me, so I cracked open Damage Control. I loved it! This is an entertaining thriller in John Gilstrap’s Jonathan Grave series, of which I have not read any of the others, but I am certainly ready to, now. Jonathan Grave has spend a life being the hunter, but now he is the hunted. His back against the wall, he must fight to survive, while still protecting his valuable cargo, a young teen, Tristan.

Creativity: 2 stars

Sorry, but it is not that I am knocking Gilstrap here, it is just not creative, not in the surprising or revolutionary sense. As stated under the Execution section, I believe Gilstrap could take any old idea and pull it off well.

Characters: 4 stars

There are many characters in Damage Control that play roles in helping or harming the three targets, Graves, Boxers, and Wagner there was no connection with them, but there didn’t need to be. Graves, Boxers, and Wagner were very well written. I felt the personalities of all three of them, their actions were always consistent with their stated personalities. In other words, show and tell, blended seamlessly, a true compliment for a writer.

Spelling and Grammar: 5 stars

I always look for grammar and spelling errors, none were noticed.

Execution: 5 stars

I am going to admit some arrogance and prejudice here. When I am about to read something based off of the military or police, my experience in the Marine Corps and Baltimore Police Department causes me to brace myself for tons of B.S. about tactics, weapons, the way we speak, and so forth. I looked on the back cover and saw the picture of John Gilstrap, honestly, I presumed, here we go again, what could this guy know about tactics and weapons? Once again, I was put in my place. John Gilstrap thanks some SEAL members and other military members for teaching him a bit. Whether they were excellent trainers or Gilstrap is an excellent learner, I cannot say, but I did not find myself complaining a single time about the military and police issues. A job well done, indeed.

When I write, I painstaking focus on ensuring that there is not a single flaw in my time lines and that everything makes complete sense. Due to my OCD, I constantly looks for flaws in this with other writers. While there were some minor issues that I noticed in Damage Control, nothing detracted from the story and the real praise for Gilstrap is that I am sure there are more. The praise comes in the fact that I was so into the story, it was so fact paced, and there was so much going on that I lost my desire to scrutinize the details.

I think that anyone that enjoys reading, would have to enjoy Damage Control, regardless of their preferred genre. The story has a bit of everything, while predominately a thriller, there are some love interest, comedy, and mystery, in order to appeal to everyone. This is the first novel that I am giving 4 stars to and the first that I can  recommend to everyone. I am reserving my 5 stars for a true classic, if it ever comes along.

Michael A. Wood Jr.
“The Critical Critic”