Book Review: “Mine” by Brett Battles

mineMine, by Brett Battles, has one of the best prologues I’ve read in a long time. The set-up was incredible, filled with everything you’d want — questions, terror, and some fantastic character moments.

Unfortunately, at least for me, the rest of the book was like pushing a stalled car up a hill.

Now I realize I’m definitely the outlier here as Mine has been picking up some rave reviews from people I typically agree with, but the bulk of this novel was a summary of two of the characters lives. While there were a few moments where we were able to see the changes in their lives caused by the <set-up>, most of it read like a wikipedia page, without emotion or a reason to care. Even the side adventures they moved through I felt no vested interest in.

I wasn’t a fan of seeing things from the mechanical point of view of whatever they were up against, and kept hoping that the ending would pull this together in a really unique way.

Spoiler alert: it didn’t.

The novel itself is extremely well written and Battles has proven he can write some terse prose, going places that surprise you. I’m not sure if it’s the speed he’s whipping out these new books, but both this and Rewinder lacked everything I loved about Sick. The premises are great, but they just sort of stagger without ever lifting off the ground.

Probably my last Battles read for awhile as I’m now expecting “more of the same.” But man, the set-up to this novel deserved to be explored.

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