Shovel Ready | Adam Sternbergh | Headline Publishing Shovel Ready #1 | Source: Review (Bookbridgr) | 256 pages | Adult | Fantasy | Dystopia
Release Date: January 24th, 2014
“I don’t want to know your reasons. I don’t care. Think of me as a bullet. Just point.’
Spademan used to be a garbage man. That was before the dirty bomb hit Times Square, before his wife was killed, before New York became a burnt-out shell. Now the wealthy escape grim reality by spending their days tapped into a virtual world; the rest of the population has to fend for itself on the streets. Now there’s nothing but garbage.
So Spademan became a hit man. He doesn’t ask questions, he works quickly, and he’s very handy with a box-cutter.
When he’s hired to kill the daughter of a high-profile evangelist, Spademan’s life is upended. To survive, he will have to navigate two worlds – the slick fantasy world of the elite and the wasteland reality of the rest of the city’s inhabitants – to finish the job, clear his conscience, and make sure he’s not the one who winds up in the ground.”
I had never seen this novel around until I picked it up on the Bookbridgr site. Set in a dystopian New York City where bombings have destroyed the city and a new society has formed, this definitely seemed the book for me. In short although I was not a huge fan of some elements, overall I thoroughly enjoyed this read.
Negatives out of the way first, the writing style was a huge case of hit and miss for me. Although it was more hit than miss in the end, I sometimes felt so lost when it came to the dialogue. There is little to no punctuation and while reading it is incredibly choppy (choppy in the best way possible). It is very snappy and to the point. This meant that world building was so on point, however, me attempting to follow some of the dialogue, not so much.
One of my favourite parts of the novel was the “Limnosphere”. A form of virtual reality, if you will. Before the bombs struck it was just a small part of some peoples everyday lives, now, the majority of who is left have retired to it full time. I found the whole logistics behind it so interesting!
Just a quick shout out to Spademan, our main character. I think he is one of the few characters who have been so well introduced that have made me empathize with an assassin. The novel is from his point of view and as I said before, the world building from him was spot on. I also loved how he had a certain levels of ethics when it came to executing his assassinations. Small bits of info that in the grand scheme of things may not have been needed but I still was more than happy to have!
Overall, this a solid start to a series and I can’t wait to see what comes next. I am truly looking forward to see where this series goes!
Goodreads Average: 3.48/5 (out of 1,683 ratings)