{Short Read Sunday} Garrison by Nigel Edwards – A Book Review

garrison

Continuing on with my Short Read Sunday idea, in which I review a short read every Sunday (you’d have never guessed what the title meant if I hadn’t explained, I’m sure) this week I decided to go with ‘Garrison’ by Nigel Edwards as I really fancied sinking my teeth into some military fiction.

Blurb:

On the contested Iron Flats, two young recruits face their first battle. Will they die? Will glory cover them or ignominy taint their name? Only the morrow will tell.

Watching over them is enigmatic veteran, Von. He knows that when soldiers fail, the army relies on veterans to fix them… whatever it takes…

Author: Nigel Edwards

Publisher: Greyhart Press

Release Date: 14/07/2011

Genre: Fantasy

Pages: 41

My chosen format: Kindle

My rating of Garrison: 2 out of 5

Purchase: Amazon UK, Amazon US

 

Review:

I don’t expect mind-blowing covers for shorter reads (even though Danse Macabre was gorgeous) so the simple image of a garrison with an almost watermarked soldier’s head above it, doesn’t really bother me too much. I’m not a huge fan of the publisher slapping their image on the front, though. And why is the ‘I’ in Nigel’s name lower case when every other letter on the cover is upper case? The blurb is good. Gives you all you need to know and really sets an image in your head for what to expect. Raw recruits, impending battle, grizzled veteran: GO!

The idea with a short read is that you can blast through it in one sitting … with Garrison it took me a good three or four. This wasn’t due to the length, it was due to the first half of the book. The writing seemed like it was aimed at a lower reading age and, well, nothing seemed to happen. I couldn’t develop an attachment with any of the characters (or even find myself liking any of them). Another major gripe on my end is that none of them act like they are in the military. Discipline seems to be a thing that happens to other people. At one point a junior officer was on the verge of refusing a senior officer as though it was an everyday occurrence. That, coupled with really uninspired dialogue just turned me right off the book. Dialogue is probably my main moan about the entire book, to be honest.

When I say they don’t act like they are in the military, you have the protagonist and his friend, raw recruits admittedly, just acting like high school kids. The veteran just seems to act like a kindly grandfather who would much rather spend his time giving long, drawn out speeches than anything else. Some of the less likeable characters come across more as pantomime villains than anything else. There is a scene in a guardhouse that just screams pantomime.

Garrison does get better. The battle, and most of what happens after it is surprisingly good. It feels like the first 55-60% were written by a different author. Just feels totally different. In fact, the last 40% or so is the only reason the rating got dragged up from a 1 to a 2.

Garrison, with all the impressive reviews on Amazon (UK) seemed like an enjoyable prospect. As it is, I feel very let down. If it was a full length novel, I very much doubt I would have got through to the end.

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15 thoughts on “{Short Read Sunday} Garrison by Nigel Edwards – A Book Review

  1. Good feature for short reads.. This is what sundays are for!
    🙂 I was kind of excited for the military fiction… but once I read your review, I feel a bit deflated.. I like to connect to me characters… just for the sake of curiosity I will probably give this a go in the future, though.

    I’ve read quite a few short stories as of late.. I hope you don’t mind me recommending a couple of authors to check out… my latest find is Jack Binding. His shorts are horror and The Property is my favorite out of the 4 he has published this far. There’s Calvin Demmer… he has kind or paranormal, quite graphic horror as well… 🙂

    Good luck with the sunday feature 🙂 Great idea!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m more than happy to be suggested short story ideas. Always looking for something short at the weekend. You may enjoy it, I enjoyed the last bits. Just not the majority of the first part. Thank you, hopefully it doesn’t fall flat as a feature 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. 3 or 4 sittings to read 41 pages, it really must have been a toil to get through that first part.

    I agree with you about the cover (Danse Macabre had a stunning cover) and I’ve seen worse than this one but the lower case ‘i’ while done I presume for aesthetic reasons just looks weird. Not a fan of the yellow colouring either, I know it wouldn’t standout as much but white would have looked better.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Military fiction is so hard to get right. There has to be an almost hyper realism to them which most creative types (authors) find impossible to relate to. I love Military fiction, especially SF/F, but finding good ones feels like hunting unicorns.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I’ve never really read Romance. I always feel if it’s a genre I’m not overly clued up then I may struggle to give a fair review. Might tackle a short romance one day … baby steps 😉 does Twilight count as romance? I read that haha

        Like

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