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DanSchwent

Dantastic Book Reviews

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Last Call  - Tim Powers Former professional poker player Scott Crane's life is falling apart, having just lost his wife and been on a beer binge, when aspects of his past have come back to haunt him. Specifically, a bizarre card game twenty years before where he may have lost his soul. But what do his foster father and foster sister have to do with it? And why is everyone trying to kill him?

Last Call is really hard to summarize accurately. You could say it was about a man who lost his soul and tried to win it back. Or you could say it was a modern retelling of the Fisher King legend. Or a story about Bugsy Siegel and the rise of Las Vegas. Or you could say it was all of those things and more.

The story started slow, establishing what had happened before and giving the reader hints at the magic Powers was working. That portion reminded me of Neil Gaiman's American Gods and Roger Zelazny's Lord of Light, both books about ancient gods or archetypes in the modern world. Once the two thirds mark was passed, the book kicked into high gear and the suspense level sky-rocketed. The last one hundred pages flew past. The characters were well developed, even the villains and supporting characters.

While I didn't think it was as good as The Anubis Gates, it was at least as good as Three Days to Never. Tim Powers fans and fans of Gaiman and Zelazny should give this one a read.