Like I mentioned when I talked about The Giveaway, I’d ordered the other two books based on the Burn Notice TV series, The Fix and The End Game, to read during my vacation earlier this month.
I could definitely tell that The Fix was the first novelization from the series. Having read the third book in the series already, it was noticeable how much more comfortable Tod Goldberg has gotten with the characters. Most of the issues I noticed were small repetitions and odd word choices in the dialog, nothing that interfered with my enjoyment of the story.
The one major problem I had, with The Fix, was a difference in how Tod handles changes in perspective from Michael to Sam and Fiona. The book sets it up like Michael is still narrating based on what Sam told him afterwards, but it didn’t feel quite right to me and leads to some confusing chronology.
The End Game was much closer, in quality, to the third novel than the first. Tod drops Michael as narrator when switching to sections focuses on Sam and Fiona. There were also less of the small repetitions and odd word choices in dialog that popped out at me in the first book.
Despite the small problems mentioned above, I would still recommend these books to anyone who is a fan of the show and wants to experience a bit more of Michael Westen’s life. They are all quick reads and make excellent vacation reading. Tod has a fourth book The Reformed due out in January, according to Amazon, that I’m looking forward to picking up.
There are two bookstores between the office where I work and most of the places where I eat lunch. This means that usually once a week I stop in at one or both places and browse the shelves. This is a bad habit of mine because of have a pile (which is not an exaggeration) of books that I want to read but haven’t gotten to yet, so buying more books is really not something I should be doing. Still, it’s a daily temptation to stop in and see what’s new and twice in recent weeks I’ve been pleasantly surprised.
My latest surprise was finding a Burn Notice novel called The Giveaway. Partially because it was in the Science-Fiction/Fantasy section (I’m guessing someone changed their mind and left it there). The show is one of my favorites, but my initial reaction was, “Bleh, a novel?” Out of morbid curiosity, I opened it up and read the first page to see what it was like. It starts out with, “When you’re a spy…” and then goes into one of the show’s trademark voice-overs by Weston. So now I was curious and decided to buy it and give it a read.
It was a quick read, took me a day or so, but I enjoyed it quite a bit. Enough, actually, that I ordered the other two books The Fix and The End.
The plot is a typical one for the show. Friend Barry, the money launderer, needs a favor. He has a friend, who’s a retired bank robber, that did one last job but ended up ripping of a motorcycle gang and now needs help cleaning up the mess.
The dialog, monologues, and action are all very true to the show. The book does bring something new to the series though, there are a couple of chapters written from Sam and Fiona’s viewpoints. This is not something that the show does and I’m not sure it would very well if they tried it, but it worked well in the book and made for interesting insights into the characters.