Book review: Undercard
The “middle muddle” is something all authors and readers fear: that after a dynamite opening, the action falls into hibernation until it wakes up again in Act III. Some readers even skip the middle of books to get to the finale. Moviegoers step away an hour in for a bathroom break. Students read the beginning and end of a chapter or book while cramming for a test.
Do not skip the middle here!
David Albertyn’s Undercard vanquishes that dreaded, paralyzing wasteland where too many manuscripts go to die. A quite unexpected twist right in the middle of this novel propels the high-stakes drama and intimate reflection of the second half.
Undercard also has a seductive, noirish atmosphere in and outside the ring in Vegas (and on the cover). I agree with fellow reviewer Wilder Bellamy who called this a Scorsese story.
Looking forward to seeing how Albertyn’s career progresses.
My short mystery, “A Hand in Murder,” has been published at http://mystericale.com/article/a-hand-in-murder/.
Mysterical-E has been publishing mysteries and crime fiction for over twenty years, and “A Hand in Murder” appears in its Fall/Winter 2019 issue. Over the years, Mysterical-E has also published stories by novelist and playwright Nina Mansfield, author Elizabeth Zelvin, and Edgar Award-winning author Art Taylor, so I’m in great company.
The full issue is available for free here:
“A Hand in Murder” is about a pre-law student who investigates his cousin’s arrest for chopping off someone’s hand who’d died from the wound. At 6,000 words, it’s ten pages printed—an easy fifteen-minute read. It includes profanity and descriptions of violence; reader discretion is advised.
Mysterical-E allows for comments at the bottom of each story in the issue.
If you know a military veteran who is trying to become a published author, tell them to check out BooksbyVeterans. The publishing services company helps veterans navigate their options in the publishing world. BooksbyVeterans is operated under Graybeard Books, which also does works to bring military writing to the market.
Bouhammer.com, a military issues blog, says that “as someone who knows many veteran authors and knows a lot more who would like to be authors but they aren’t sure how to start in order to tell their story, this is great news.”
BooksbyVeterans and Graybeard offer a free appraisal. They appear to offer self-publishing and agent-based services. As competitive as the publishing world is, veterans can use every advantage available.