This started off well. Like it might actually go somewhere. A fun case that does a good job of developing the character and what his goals are beyond just working for the firm. There wasn’t really that much off about the story. That is until the plot finally starts to deliver on what the blurb promised. Started being the operative word as it never actually goes anywhere and the character depth stalls as well.
The more I got into this story the more I was waiting for what the blurb promised. A guy who never loses takes on a case there is no way he can win and for once actually believes the client to be innocent. All of the moral compass shifting, the uncertainty of a challenge he knows he shouldn’t take, a case that if he wins will make enough money for him to retire early. All of the mental gymnastics plus cooperate corruption and espionage I was going in for kept going further and further away.
This story did not deliver on what the blurb promised. In fact, the blurb not only says he falls into this case against his will but it will involve a legal thriller that will take you on a ride through unexpected turns in the courtroom. None of which happens. He actually turns down the case and doesn’t get forced into it until the very last chapter almost the last page and then this first instalment is over. The new blurb states, as I bought this book a year ago, states something even more inaccurate in connection to what actually happens in the book. I mention what that is further down.
All the promises, all the resolution, everything both versions of the blurb used to entice you to read this story doesn’t even begin to happen. The case does not start in this book so the blurb is ridiculously misleading. I don’t even know how else to say it but this book is clearly not written to be a stand-alone as part of a series and intentionally incomplete to force you to buy the second one. It being free just adds to the misleading marketing ploy.
This book did not give me completed feels with the promise of more to come, it read more like the entire book was already finished and this seemed like the best place to slice it so readers have no choice but to get part two. Add that to the fact that nothing in the blurb beyond being forced to take the case actually happens in this instalment and you’re left with a pretty underwhelming experience.
I really thought some other means would force him to take the case, and this entire novel would be about this case or at the very least part of it would begin here but nothing beyond him turning down the case then being forced to take it is about the story promised in the blurb and, as per usual, I’m disinterested in being forced to read books. There’s nothing worse than having an unfinished feeling reading something and there are series out there, good ones, where each instalment is more than three hundred pages and they still manage to complete the challenges within each section so each book has a separate theme under the overall umbrella of the series or trilogy. That in comparison means some of these shorts that are series can fit entirely in one book of a full-length series.
All that to say if there isn’t a way to do the equivalent of having each book be complete and part of something bigger simultaneously just in shorter form, then write one whole novel. In the end, it will still be shorter than some full-length novels anyway.
On a technical side, the indents are sporadic and mostly none existent. I noticed it immediately. Generally, non-indented books do the annoying double space between chapters, but dialogue also needs indents so this, although passible is still awkward. It’s always weird to read books that go straight up and down on both sides like it’s just one big block of writing. Newspapers, school textbooks, both fiction and non-fiction novels are all indented so I’m always shocked when I come across a fiction novel that isn’t. With this one however random and sparse indents showed up along with not separating paragraphs with a space so it was doubly weird.
I just had a lot of negative feelings reading this from the formatting to the book itself not delivering on what the blurb promised. It had the bones of a really good story but instead of trying to write individual parts of a whole story, it reads like an incomplete piece that got taken out of a story and to get the rest I must read on and this left me feeling unfulfilled with this first instalment. I expected something completely different based on the blurb and I’m not the biggest fan of blurbs not matching the contents of the book. That’s more than half the reason I bother to buy books so it can be really upsetting when a story doesn’t pan out the way the hook said it would. And since I bought the book a year ago the blurb no reads that the client walks into his office but in the book he goes to the prison where she is being held so my opinion still stands. The blurb is misleading and incorrect.
At the time when I wrote this review the first time the covers were slightly different but the titles are Identicle. I didn’t see numbers before but there is a tiny number at the bottom of the title signifying the different books. In one cover the white number gets lost in the backgrouund. At that time the blurbs were even all the same at least now each book has an individual blurb so my opinion on that is gone. I went in, at the time, trying to prove myself wrong for not really getting into this and so finding the same title with no subtitles for each book and the same blurb didn’t help. Even if that was on the level like it is now a whole year later, other reviewers had the same impression about the novel. There’s just so much wrong here with this approach to writing and I don’t have this kind of money to waste on writing that goes out of its way to force you to spend money instead of just win you over with good plot and execution. This book just screams ‘I’m not getting to the point on purpose so you have to buy the next one’ and that’s the easiest way to get me to walk away from a story. Seriously I’m more willing to put up money for a whole book than to get an incomplete one for free and learn that the entire series will likely tell just one story, which of course is a singular book.
The simplest way to explain this is an HP reference. The first book has to do with the sorcerer’s stone. There are challenges, friendships and enimies are made. That book has a specific villain to defeat and by the end of the book that villain is defeated. Voldermort is still out there as the main villain but the task set aside for book one is a complete story. I’ve share, okay more than my share, of trilogies and a few series and each book is a part of one big story but each book also has its own individual arch that is resolved within that book. So reading books that intentionally go out of their way not to resolve anything to force you to buy the next book just bug me. I honestly don’t think I have ever gotten past book one of a series that did this and this book is no exception. Like I said already, it’s the one of the easiest ways to get me to quit on a series. Not a fan.