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Mr. Mercedes
Stephen King
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Lawrence Block

The Cormorant

The Cormorant - Chuck Wendig He leans over toward her. She smells his breath. It smells of roadkill ripening in a wet ditch. He taps the end of the feather on the dashboard, click, click, click. "I’m just warning you Miriam Black. Forces have been aligning against you for a while. You’ve been fucking with this Jenga tower for too long, and it ain't long before it all comes clickety-clackety falling down."

Responding to a Craigslist ad she wasn't aware had been posted on her behalf, Miriam finds herself travelling to Florida to meet up with a man wishing to know how he will kick the bucket. In exchange for her services, the unknown party is offering up a cool five grand – thus making it an offer she can’t afford to refuse. Of course, the whole thing sounds shady to begin with and when Ms. Black finds out who’s really pulling the strings, you can bet your ass shit is about to hit the fan.

The third book (and thankfully not the last) in the Miriam Black series is an outstanding read. If you've read what I have written about the first two (Blackbirds, Mockingbird) then you’re aware that I’m a huge fan of these books. They’re fast paced, witty and consistently entertaining – a true page turner by the very definition. At this point, I feel like Wendig would need to have been given a frontal lobotomy to screw this up.

If you liked the first two in the series, I can guarantee you’re going to like this. Miriam is still her tried and true self, spewing verbal harpoons at both friend and foe. The road that lies ahead of her is no less bumpy nor is it a straight drive as it’s littered with both twists and turns galore. Wendig explores more of Miriam’s past and what makes her tick by bringing her mother into the present day for the first time in the series. Given their tumultuous past, their back and forth is awkward and rough around the edges. As we all know by now, Miriam isn't one who exactly forgives easily.

While it was touched upon in Mockingbird, The Cormorant kicks down the door on the fact that Miriam isn't alone when it comes to her special “gift”. In fact, it’s known that there are indeed others out there that possess altered versions of what Miriam can do and they aren't always friendly.

Following the acknowledgements, Chuck states that Miriam’s due for a return in the fourth novel of the series, Thunderbird. I was spoiled in being able to read the first three books back to back to back – now I have to wait. And I’m not a man known for patience. Write faster!