Sunday, February 25, 2018

Book Review: MICRO GOD by K. R. Martin

Original Goodreads review posted on Nov 23, 2017.


"Richard Clarke is a man born with the unnatural ability to control all reality around himself. Whether it be granting himself immortality, stopping bullets in mid-air, or destroying his enemies with a mere thought, he is often feared as a god on Earth. However, outliving everyone he ever loved whilst losing friends to the limitations of his powers [places] a heavy burden upon his shoulders, and in the 21st Century, Clarke is a stoic loner, traveling and living only to kill evil. He has no time for friends or family, but all that changes when he meets a dedicated doctor working in the dark streets of Detroit. In Detroit, Clarke vows to eliminate all gangs terrorizing the city's populace. However, after delivering a junkie with a broken leg to a hospital, Clarke is given a chance to end his decades of rampages, killing criminals and villains. Instead, he is offered a chance to work in the hospital along the idealistic Doctor Chloe Hall. His powers give him an incredible edge in the emergency room[,] and he soon realizes that he could save everyone who comes through the hospital doors. But the gangs are still out there, and Clarke has to make a choice. Should he keep killing, or should he begin saving lives? 'That which is destroyed cannot be repaired. That which is mended cannot be maintained.'"
—Amazon Plot Description

Richard Clarke is a god of approximately five feet of his immediate surroundings. I want to start off by saying how much I love this premise! When you're writing fantasy or sci-fi, it's so easy to fall into the trap of making your characters over-powered, but Kyle R. Martin takes the OP-character and flips it in a way that I don't think I've ever seen before. His main character is a literal god on earth, but his power doesn't go beyond a few feet . . . which kinda puts a cramp in the whole being a god thing.

I first came across K. R. Martin through his YouTube channel KrimsonRogue, where he posts a very humorous vlog series called The Book Was Better, reviewing movie adaptations of popular novels. I'm a huge fan of his vlog series, and was very eager to read his book. I adore stories about redemption and rediscovering hope, so this book was right up my alley. I found the story very well structured, the action scenes were thrilling, and I connected with the main character enough to want him to find happiness (you'll have to read the book to find out if he does or not).

I enjoyed this book a great deal and I think it's a solid story, but I do have a few nitpicks. Nothing too serious, but some things I feel do warrant a mention. One is that I think the book is too short to fully flesh out the story. Everything felt a little rushed, and I think it needed an additional forty or fifty pages to better set up scenes, flesh out the characters' personalities, and develop Clarke and Chloe's relationship a bit more. That's just me though, and I think readers who prefer a quick read will probably like that Micro God is so compact. Other problems include a small number of grammatical mistakes I found here and there that must have slipped past the editing phase, and there were a few points in the story where Martin narrated the obvious. For example:

"The speech was entirely sociopathic and narcissistic."

Now lines like that didn't show up that often (maybe about three times), but when they did, it brought to mind the adage, "show, don't tell," except here, Martin had already effectively shown that the gangster was sociopathic and narcissistic, so the readers didn't really need it spelled out to them in the next line. Basically, Martin occasionally shows AND tells, which is a bit overkill.

Okay, nitpicking done. I enjoyed this book and hope Richard Clarke shows up again in Martin's later books, assuming he can get over his writer's block (Sorry for the dig, Kyle. I just watched your Prince of Persia review and couldn't help myself). I give Micro God 4 stars out of 5.

Micro God is available on Amazon.com

"Kyle R. Martin, better known under the pseudonym "KrimsonRogue", is best known for his youtube video series, The Book Was Better, in which he compares film adaptations to their source material, usually books or book series."
—Goodreads Author Biography

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