Broken Nights ***
by Matthew and Michael Devenport

The concept for this book was great! It is a vigilante adventure in the vein of the Punisher or Batman. We have a regular person, some martial arts training, and gadgets against the bad guys. As is expected, he’s got a chip on his shoulder for criminals.

I wanted to be Jason Night when I was 23! I watched a couple parkour video and practiced jumping from stuff and somersaulting. I took all sorts of martial arts classes. I even have a tie just like Jason’s only tie in my closet right now! It too, was from a wedding a few years ago.

I received a free audible code in exchange for a voluntary review. I get freebies often and don’t review them all. I do give them all a try, but if I can’t finish the book, I don’t leave a review. Sometimes the writing is poor, other times the tone is pessimistic. Because of this most my ratings are four or five stars. I finished this book, thought it was a fun adventure, and would even listen to a sequel, but two recurring elements forced me to think this book earned only three stars.

First, for a comic style adventure, I found the pace of storytelling slow. By that I do not mean a fight scene to story building scene ratio. I mean that the frequent use of passive voice pulled me out of the happy pretend land between my ears to figure out the Subject Verb Object sequence of the statement. Another pace problem was restatement. The story goes here, then confirms that it went there. As if I didn’t understand what was just stated. The prose also had tons of unnecessary that made sentences over long. Changing points of view within one scene also distracted me and if found most of the POVs were unnecessary. If Jason night observed Amy’s expression and implied what she was thinking, we would not have popped out of and back into Jason’s head to learn that Amy was worried. Word choice also jarred me. The word tire was used four times in one paragraph. It happened again and again. At one point some bad guys were described as horses because they were pulling something, but the word horses recurred so often in the scene that I wondered if Jason was fighting animals. Don’t worry PETA, they were people.

I removed the second star because I feel there was a lack of research. Neurons are one example. A character describes “natural paths in the brain” instead of saying neurons. If neurons were better understood then a concept like have the knowledge of martial arts means automatically being a great martial artist would never have made it to print. It takes very little time to understand a martial art move, but constant practice to make the move work well. The reason for this is because neural networks grow each time they are accessed. They also shrink if not used often. That is why practice makes perfect. Some of the fight scenes gave me the impression that Jason did not have the training he claimed to have. Specifically “mma on the ground” or grappling and Jui Jitsu. One scene has him scissor sweep his opponent, stand up, position himself, and return to the ground to attack. A grappler would not return to his feet and get back down again. Instead he would use his chest to press the opponent flat to the ground and spin like a pin wheel. It’s a warm up drill in the mma classes Jason would have taken. It would be drilled into his instinct.

If either of the issues happened only a time or two, I would not have noticed, but they happened all throughout. Normally I would have stopped listening, but like I said at the top, I really did enjoy the book! Thorough editing could make this book a Best Seller. These are all just one person’s opinions. If you don’t fuss over writing style and martial arts, I’m sure you’ll think I’m being crazy. You’re welcome to that opinion, like I’m welcome to mine.

I think the authors brought a unique twist to the genre by going to great lengths to describe how every day attainable items that you or I could buy or already have, made up Jason Night’s arsenal. The phone app was my favorite.

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