Shooting Blackbirds: A Round-Up Of News And Reviews

Blackbirds is out now for just shy of a week, and this seems like a good time to do a round-up of stuff related to and orbiting around the book’s release? I’m totally geeked that the book is getting a lot of love (and, perhaps unsurprisingly, a lot of not love — it’s a tough book, no doubt, and is perhaps a bit polarizing, but I suppose I’d rather a book be polarizing than be shot straight down the gray mushy middle).

I’ll politely ask (beg, wheedle, plead, cajole) that if you have read the book and are interested in leaving a review somewhere (Amazon? B&N? Goodreads?) I’d be mighty appreciative.

On with the round-up, then. Load your rifles. Let’s shoot some blackbirds.

(If I missed anything, feel free to remind me in comments, I’ll add!)

Places I Pop Up Like An Unwanted Gopher

“I’m dying. Don’t get excited. You are, too.” I had me a big idea about writing Blackbirds, a notion about death and fate and powerlessness and hypochondria and all those crazy things, and as such, I’m over at John Scalzi’s space this past week talking about it. Check out: “The Big Idea: Chuck Wendig.”

I say make genre your bitch over at Criminal Complex, in an essay called “Genre Is A Moving Target.”

I exhort all you crazy writers to embrace your crazy over at Writer Unboxed: “Own The Crazy.”

I help you identify your shit-or-get-off-the-pot novel at Stephen Blackmoore’s space.

I join Uber-Human and Ultra-Creative JC Hutchins for the 100th episode of the Functional Nerds!

In this interview at Litstack, I say things like, “I procure hallucinogens from the Tuk Tuk people of Borneo, and then I kill my own doppelganger in hand-to-hand spirit combat.”

In this interview at My Bookish Ways (where they are also giving away a copy of Blackbirds, so don’t miss out), I say things like, “I like to drink a draught of bat’s blood before I write, and I can only write wearing a dead possum pubic wig.”

In this interview at LitReactor (with the one and only Keith “Rawdog” Rawson), I say things like, “You have bred true, penmonkey. Go rest now. Go die of the bird-flu, your work here is done.”

And finally, here at my own site, the 25 things I learned while writing the book.

Reviews That Don’t Suck

From Tor.com: “This is one of those novels that sucks you in and doesn’t let you off the hook until you’ve turned the final page… It’s a short, sharp tale that’s consistently captivating and a pure, dark delight from start to finish.”

From Shelf Awareness: “Wendig inserts surprising moments of humanity among all the profanity.”

From LitStack: “Wendig is not for the weak. Wendig is for the brave, the adventurous, those strong in mind and stomach.”

From Clear Eyes, Full Shelves: “And thus begins a visceral, blood-pumping (sometimes a lot of blood pumping out of someone’s body) ride filled with (minor spoiler alert) the obligatory Big Bad, his burned-out henchman, his amusingly sadistic henchwoman, an ironically named blackmailing conman and a mysterious metal suitcase.”

From Adventures Fantastic: “It’s a high octane ride through the dark recesses of humanity, a smashing blend of noir and the supernatural that combines the best of classic crime novels with downright genuine creepiness.”

From Violin In A Void: “It’s a quick and dirty brush with the seedier side of urban fantasy. A good kind of nasty, especially if you get a little tired of squeaky clean heroes and heroines who do no wrong.”

From The Book Stoner: “I enjoyed this very much and I spent half the time laughing my brains out. It’s just darkly hilarious? Hilariously dark? Anyway, read this if you’re into dark humor and gore and crime novels with a twist of fantasy.”

From Stefan’s Bookshelf: “Blackbirds is urban fantasy at it’s gory and violent best, 5 bloody stars.”

From Waiting For Fairies: “Blackbirds is a hauntingly macabre book… The prose is visceral and brutally beautiful.”

From Dice, Food, Lodging: “Blackbirds is a finely crafted story that didn’t disappoint me for even a page. The story is visceral and gripping and kept me reading straight through. I hate to call up the connotations of a “page turner,” as I have some distinctly non-stellar examples in my own head, but I honestly hated to put this one down.”

From Andrew Jack: “If you want the short version of this review, then here it is: I loved Blackbirds. I loved it as much as any other Urban Fantasy I’ve ever read, which, considering my almost inappropriate love of The Dresden Files is saying a lot.”

From Cupcake’s Cupboard: “Blackbirds, a rough, unflinching suspense tale from Chuck Wendig, introduces us to Miriam and the torture of knowing how people die, yet being powerless to stop it.”

From The Guilded Earlobe, a review of the audiobook: “In Blackbirds, Chuck Wendig has created a character who should be wearing a T-Shirt that says, ‘Spoiler Warning.’”

EDIT:

I’m told that SFX is giving the book a 4/5, saying, “Think Six Feet Under as written by Stephen King and Chuck Palahniuk.” So, that’s pretty sweet! (They didn’t much like Double Dead.)

From MyShelf Confessions: “This is a must read for fans of paranormal books on the much darker and grittier side of things.  I was hooked a few short pages in and could barely put Blackbirds down until I was finished.”

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