Duckett & Dyer: A Comedic Dark Matter
One of my favorite novels of all time is Dark Matter by Blake Crouch. If you’ve not read it, it dives deeply into the ever-expanding philosophical quagmire of infinite universes. It’s terrifying. It’s heartbreaking. It’s a near perfect sci-fi novel.
Duckett & Dyer: Dicks for Hire by G. M. Nair is the exact opposite of Dark Matter in all the right ways. Where Dark Matter goes dark, Duckett & Dyer goes absurd. Where Dark Matter goes hard science, Duckett & Dyer says “screw it, it works how we want it to work because we say so.”
I cannot understate the simultaneous ridiculousness and seriousness that occurs in this novel. It’s like if Weird Al Yankovic wrote a sci-fi novel.
I don’t want to talk much about the story of this book because it’s too good to hint at in a review. Don’t want to spoil a single thing! I’ll just say this story has the potential to suck you in. I read the entire second half on a plane ride today. If I had one complaint about this book, it’s that the first half is too slow . . . but the set-up of the first half is necessary to land the satisfying conclusion to the book.
Well done, Nair.
Writing: 8/10. No complaints here. High quality prose, nothing stood out to me as fantastic but I was never bored nor did I feel as if the writing lacked flair.
Characters: 10/10. What a duo, Duckett & Dyer. Nair expertly crafts conflict between his two protagonists, fueling the insane plot while developing their relationship in a nuanced and creative fashion.
Setting: 9/10. While I never got a strong sense of place for the generic city they live in throughout much of the story . . . there are a lot of really cool moments of absurdity in the world of this book that nail the comedic nature of this book with graceful poise.
Plot: 8/10. Clever. All of its just clever. The first half was slow, as I emphasized above, but I think that’s good. Some readers may not enjoy it, but it’s all necessary to establish what turns into a very creative conclusion . . . and an ending that sets up future tales with flair.
Overall: 8.75/10. A clear five star review. It hits all the marks of a high quality indie authored novel, I’m glad I put this book on my list. Seriously, go grab yourself a copy.