by Chuck Wendig – So good, so good, so good!! Wendig’s somehow stepped inside the mind and soul of a teenage girl with a monstrous ability and made her a heartbreakingly believable character… one the reader aches with and roots for. Vulgar, violent, morally ambivalent, Miriam goes through life afraid to get too close to anyone… literally, because if she touches you, she knows exactly when and how you will die. She doesn’t cause that death, but she experiences it as if she were you in your final moments. She’s developed a number of coping mechanisms to avoid contact and also a plan to use the power to her advantage. After all, if you’re loaded and you’re going to die anyway, why shouldn’t she be there to scoop up a few valuable keepsakes to make her own life more comfortable? I mean, it’s not like you’re going to need them, right?
Miriam is coping pretty well, until a piece of her past tracks her down and brings a sadistic trio of trackers trailing him. And then she violates her own primary rule: she lets herself care about one of her marks.
The rest of the story piles surprise upon misery upon twist, none of which I will divulge here and all framed in the colorful vernacular Wendig wields so masterfully.
I can’t wait for the sequel.