FUN & GAMES is perhaps the most aptly titled book I’ve ever read because it is both descriptive and vivid. FUN & GAMES is as much fun—classic, old-fashioned fun—as a rollercoaster (or merry-go-round, for those of us who don’t like heights).

FUN & GAMES doesn’t pull any punches. Some would describe it as graphic, and they would not be wrong. The thing is, nothing about the story, no detail, is gratuitous. It begins on a wild and twisty road (literally) and pulls the reader through a tale that is as enthralling as it is fantastic.

I’ve spoken with a few folks lately about the length of books, and our consensus is that generally, books are getting longer. Which is not necessarily good. Weighing in at just over 300 pages, FUN & GAMES is exactly the right length. Long enough to tell a rip-roaring good story without anything extraneous.

FUN & GAMES is also unusual in that it will appeal absolutely equally to men and women. For different reasons, but equally nonetheless. I also think it’s a fantastic selection for kids—tween boys especially. Parents should probably read it first because it is somewhat graphic, but I think no more so than the video games, movies, and even some ads they are exposed to daily.

Ok, so what’s it about? FUN & GAMES reminded me in many ways of old western movies, not because any of the characters would be caught dead in cowboy hats, but because it gives us a damsel in distress, an unlikely hero, and a conspiracy of bad guys of epic proportions. Our protagonist, Charlie Hardie, has all the attributes we love in a classic hero. He’s rough around the edges—he’s no Jimmy Bond—in ways that readers will relate to.

FUN & GAMES was the first of author Duane Swierczynski’s books I’d read, but it will certainly not be the last. Luckily, he has published several that will keep me going while I wait for the second episode of the Charlie Hardie trilogy, HELL & GONE, which is out in October.

Duane Swierczynski was kind enough to get Charlie to do an Interview with a Character for me—no mean feat. Also, the uber-talented Elizabeth A. White did a week of posts about and by Swierczynski, which you can and should read.

Blurb: It’s impossible to not enjoy every moment

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