I am a huge fan of Matthew Reilly’s writing. It’s all kinds of opposite to everything else I read, and that’s part of why I love it. The weaponry, the pace, the action, the brutality, the fact that anyone can die. Anyone. Including, and especially very important main characters.
My first foray into the insane worlds Matt writes was Ice Station, and remains my tied-for-favourite book of all time. Incidentally, the other book which shares tied-for-favourite is The Gone Away World by Nick Harkaway, and it shares many qualities; military setting, action, and ridiculously awesome characters who you desperately want to spend time with. I got my copy of Ice Station from a little secondhand book store over a decade ago, and it has now gone beyond the stage of “much read”, to “lovingly battered”. Well over 30 read-throughs will do that to a book. I also went on to purchase a brand new copy of Ice Station; this second copy has been signed by Matt three times so far. Come November, when he’s on a book tour again and visits Perth, I intend on getting autograph number four in that book (and of course, a lone autograph in his new book!).
I just finished reading Scarecrow and the Army of Thieves. It took me a few hours to finish. That’s one of the things undeniably Matthew Reilly: the book is so fast-paced, and he’s so adept with words, you absolutely fly through reading it. Everything happens, bang, bang, bang. There are moments interspersed in the action, looking in on other characters that aren’t in the middle of a gunfight, that only spur you to read on more. Those moments are usually the ones that reveal a key piece of information that you just know will change the course of the story and throw everything into even greater chaos.
If you aren’t familiar with the four existing Scarecrow novels, and one novella, the main character is a Marine, Shane Schofield, call-sign: Scarecrow. There is absolutely every reason to love this character, cheer him on, and feel completely satisfied when he triumphs – albeit, usually missing most of his team by the end of the books. Trying to describe him would be a terrible injustice.
Reading Matt’s books always get me revved up. They are like all the great action movies, but 100% better. I see what he does, and I want to make awesome stories, too. Sure, I won’t ever write military action novels, but I sure can put every effort into being just as entertaining in my own chosen genres. After all, that’s the best goal possible for an author.
As always, Matt, fantastic work. Thank you for writing.
5 thoughts on “Scarecrow”
I’ve never read any of Matthew Reilly’s books — but you sure make them sound amazing! It’s not a genre I usually read, but I should give it a try! Thanks for the recommendation & great review!
Like all books, they don’t appeal to everyone, but I think they are really fantastic, and you should definitely give Matthew Reilly’s work a shot! If the kind of straight-up military thing isn’t super appealing, you can also try for the space/sci-fi action of Contest (an intergalactic “game” with representatives of various alien groups, and of course, some humans thrown into the deadly madness), or the more adventure/Indiana Jones-esque Jack West Jr series, starting with Seven Ancient Wonders (still very militaristic, guns and explosions, but with a heavier focus on “fantasy”/legend/mythos elements). 😀
Oh, and of course, Hover Car Racer, which is what is sounds like, and Temple, which leans more towards the Jack West Jr series style of crossing action with adventure.
Hmmm, you’ve got me wanting to try one of these out now, Ashlee. Is Ice station set in the pole, like it sounds? That in itself makes me want to read it.
Ice Station is set in Antarctica, at an underground/ice research base. While drilling, the scientists find metal down in the old, old ice they’re testing. They send down divers, and have to broadcast for help when an unknown force attacks their people. Included in this radio transmission is the information that they found a spaceship; the people who pick up the radio transmission are the bad guys, the other bad guys, and our team of heroes, charging in to secure the base and provide assistance to the researchers. But everyone is willing to kill to be the first country to study this spaceship, so they converge on the base and have crazy shoot-outs, then things get even crazier. 😀
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