Pines (Guest Review)

Pines (Guest Review)

ecret Service agent Ethan Burke is on a mission. No, not, protecting the president – Secret Service agents do more than that. He’s looking for agents who went missing in a small town called Wayward Pines.  The story begins shortly after Ethan arrived in Wayward Pines.  He wakes up with a splitting headache after a car crash.  He’s missing his wallet, keys, badge, gun and even much of his memory.  As he limps into town, he meets the locals who seem friendly, but strangely not very helpful.

While investigating the missing agents, he also wonders what is going on in this small town and its people.  He is forced to navigate a minefield of his past, starting with his relationship with his son and wife, the affair he had (with one of the missing agents) and his wartime nightmare as a POW being tortured in Iraq.   As the story develops, he learns more about himself and Wayward Pines. But the more he learns, the more questions are raised. What is going on in Wayward Pines?  What’s going on outside?  Why does no one ever leave? Why don’t folks talk about it?

The story twists and turns slowly exposing more and more.  Flashbacks, Flashforwards, Flasharounds – it’s up to you to sort out how they all fit together.  At the end of the story, there is no dramatic “You can’t handle the truth” crescendo, but there is a clear question to the reader – Would you want to know the truth? Or would you prefer, like most folks, to take the blue pill and go on living the comfortable lie?

This was a fun read – If you aren’t too busy reading Robert’s books, read this one.  One final note – On my first reading of this book, I had some general discomfort – some things didn’t seem plausible as described, but I maintained my ‘willing suspension of disbelief’ and enjoyed the rest.  On the second reading, when I already knew many of the answers Ethan was looking for I found more strangeness and felt it even more distracting.  I was very pleasantly surprised when I started reading the second book in the series and the explanation for all the earlier incongruities was explained.

Jesse Markowitz, endless friend and avid reader, tossed me this review and saved me an effort. Listen to what he says, people! He’s generally spot on (except that lunar colony one…)