Read Rook by Graham Masterton Free Online
Book Title: Rook|
The author of the book: Graham Masterton
Edition: Severn House Publishers
The size of the: 7.92 MB
City - Country: No data
Date of issue: June 1st 1996
ISBN 13: 9780727849915
Format files: PDF
Loaded: 2581 times
Reader ratings: 5.9
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I got into this because I'd heard some good things about Masterson and because the later books just look so freaking cool. Since I don't like to read out of order, here I am. I have to say that I largely liked this book and I'll keep on with the series, but there's one element that put a HUGE bad taste in my mouth. Here are le spoilers:
(view spoiler)[During the course of the book our hero Jim is introduced to goofer dust, which has the ability to alter someone's memories. He's told (by the bad guy) to use this on someone in order to keep one of his students out of jail, which he does. Jim does test it out on himself and gives himself a false memory that he's dating Susan, a hot fellow teacher at his school.
See, Jim has the serious hots for her. It's somewhat reciprocated, but at this point in time the relationship is very much in its early stages and the two are doing that "circling around each other" dance that couples tend to do when they first start out. Susan is somewhat put off when Jim suddenly starts acting like they were dating but isn't entirely put off by it, so it's not like he burned his bridge there. It just means that he'd have to work a little harder at building up her trust again.
However at the end of the book, after the bad guy was defeated, Jim decides that putting time into a relationship is for simps and blows goofer dust in her face, after which point he tells her that the two of them are dating and that they're falling in love. Yeah. What makes this pretty awful is that it was fairly likely that the two of them would have hooked up, except that Jim took any free will away. Maybe this was done to show how he was corrupted by the Big Bad, but it still leaves an incredibly bad taste in my mouth.
See, the thing about goofer dust is that it takes away any choice you have in the matter. Susan liked Jim already, so some may say that she wouldn't have stayed with him if she hadn't liked him but that's not really the point. The point is that the book establishes that goofer dust is
POWERFUL and even if the relationship would have happened, it's still a violation of her free will to take this short cut. It's kind of like when someone is ready and willing to sleep with someone, but their partner decides to drug them or get them overly inebriated because they want to make sure that it'll happen. The potential for consent does not mean that you get to take away their freedom to walk away. This is her memories that Jim was fucking with, after all. From that point on you kind of have to wonder if the relationship really would have happened and unfolded like this. It seemed likely, but it could have been that one or both of them would have decided that the relationship wasn't for them partway through.
What makes this worse is that the next book somewhat opens up with Jim admitting that the two of them essentially want and like different things, something he may have discovered if he'd courted her the traditional way. The book then goes on to say that there were several things she loved about him, but it's like "does she like those because she genuinely likes you or is this still the goofer dust acting out"? Plus you have to wonder what she'd do if/when she finds out that he spiked her with goofer dust. I'm hoping that this will be a plot point because if it is, then it'd be a good one since heroes tend to not be corrupted as easily, at least not in this way. Sometimes you'll see it in books like the first book in the Covenant of Thomas Covenant, where our hero straight up raped a woman in the first book, but generally speaking it's usually avoided unless the book is going to be exceedingly dark or *that* type of book, both of things are trends that Stephen Donaldson tends to put in his book. (I've read maybe 3-4 of his stuff and he likes to go for shock, darkness, and bleakness, not that this is necessarily a bad thing.) Despite the dark tones in this book, I never really got the idea that Jim was ever that type of guy- which makes his actions at the end of the book that much more appalling. (hide spoiler)]
So... if you just read all of that, then you're probably wondering why you should even read this. The thing is that this is actually a very small portion of the book and for the most part the character of Jim is a pretty decent guy that's forced into a very bad situation. This isn't the greatest book ever, but it does have a pretty good setup and the setbacks that Jim and his students face are fairly well done, since they're actually somewhat believable (at least in a horror sort of setting) but not so impossible to overcome that you get that sense of "why even bother".
I did enjoy the book enough to warrant going on to the next book, so that says a lot for the work as a whole. You can tell from the start that the book was meant to be part of a series, so it's entirely possible that the issue I had with its ending could be addressed in future books, so I'm not going to write this off just yet.
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Read information about the authorGraham Masterton was born in Edinburgh in 1946. His grandfather was Thomas Thorne Baker, the eminent scientist who invented DayGlo and was the first man to transmit news photographs by wireless. After training as a newspaper reporter, Graham went on to edit the new British men's magazine Mayfair, where he encouraged William Burroughs to develop a series of scientific and philosophical articles which eventually became Burroughsi novel The Wild Boys. At the age of 24, Graham was appointed executive editor of both Penthouse and Penthouse Forum magazines. At this time he started to write a bestselling series of sex 'how-to' books including How To Drive Your Man Wild In Bed which has sold over 3 million copies worldwide. His latest, Wild Sex For New Lovers is published by Penguin Putnam in January, 2001. He is a regular contributor to Cosmopolitan, Men's Health, Woman, Woman's Own and other mass-market self-improvement magazines.
Graham Masterton's debut as a horror author began with The Manitou in 1976, a chilling tale of a Native American medicine man reborn in the present day to exact his revenge on the white man. It became an instant bestseller and was filmed with Tony Curtis, Susan Strasberg, Burgess Meredith, Michael Ansara, Stella Stevens and Ann Sothern.
Altogether Graham has written more than a hundred novels ranging from thrillers (The Sweetman Curve, Ikon) to disaster novels (Plague, Famine) to historical sagas (Rich and Maiden Voyage - both appeared in the New York Times bestseller list). He has published four collections of short stories, Fortnight of Fear, Flights of Fear, Faces of Fear and Feelings of Fear.
He has also written horror novels for children (House of Bones, Hair-Raiser) and has just finished the fifth volume in a very popular series for young adults, Rook, based on the adventures of an idiosyncratic remedial English teacher in a Los Angeles community college who has the facility to see ghosts.
Since then Graham has published more than 35 horror novels, including Charnel House, which was awarded a Special Edgar by Mystery Writers of America; Mirror, which was awarded a Silver Medal by West Coast Review of Books; and Family Portrait, an update of Oscar Wilde's tale, The Picture of Dorian Gray, which was the only non-French winner of the prestigious Prix Julia Verlanger in France.
He and his wife Wiescka live in a Gothic Victorian mansion high above the River Lee in Cork, Ireland.
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