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Stop Making Sense

I read anything that's nailed down, or even just moving slowly. Cereal boxes, candy wrappers, all genres, etc., and I don't always have much time for arbitrary distinctions like literary fiction vs. genre fiction.

Countdown City

Countdown City - Ben H. Winters This is the second in the "Last Policeman" trilogy, the continuing adventures of (former) Detective Hank Palace, Concord, NH.

In this one, Hank starts investigating a missing-persons request for a friend, because what else is he going to do with his time while waiting for an asteroid to hit the Earth? As he gets into it, though, it veers left and becomes a murder mystery. Along the way, he runs into an anarchist cult (or is it?), a government conspiracy (or is it?), and the disappearance of his sister (or is it?).

Countdown City suffers a bit from sequelitis: We're familiar with this preapocalyptic world now, so we need to see something new to stay engaged. Winters does a good job of both resolving the mystery and sowing the seeds of what will (I think) appear in the last book, so hats off. He also continues to show us what it would be like to be facing the End of Days, as people continue to go "Bucket List" or just quietly fade away. I'm very grateful that he hasn't gone the completely Mad Max route (yet, although there are hints of that, too).

I'm still enjoying this series very much, and I do hope it ends with the next one. Then it will be great, that the author had the stones to follow through on his premise.