Feedback by Mira Grant (Newsflesh #4)
Reviewed by GGGinny
What I drank: Still hard seltzers. Nothign has changed frrom my last post. I still have a fridge full of them that I am slowly whittling my way through.
FEEDBACK is a full-length Newsflesh novel which overlaps the events of New York Times bestseller Mira Grant’s classic Feed and follows a group of reporters covering the Democratic side of the Presidential campaign.
There are two sides to every story… Mira Grant creates a chilling portrait of an America paralyzed with fear. No street is safe and entire swaths of the country have been abandoned. And only the brave, the determined, or the very stupid, venture out into the wild.
Step inside a world a half-step from our own in this novel of geeks, zombies, politics and social media.
Drunk Overview: Man, I know I was just complaining that I wanted more in this series, but this isn’t quite what I was asking for. This is a companion novel to Feed which was the first book in the Newsflesh trilogy, which followed a different group of bloggers following a different person running for office, this time on the Democrat side.
Drunk Thoughts: If it wasn’t clear from the first line of my overview, I’m conflicted about this book. On the one hand, I really enjoyed the outside perspective on the Mason’s and the way this book fleshed out the rest of the world. On the other hand, this book does seem to diminish at least some of what happened in the rest of the series.
- First off, this book follows Aislin, an Irish immigrant to the US who is platonically married to Ben, a black Newsie, because she’s actually a lesbian and in love with Audrey, who had a mysterious past and works as a Fictional, and is friends with Mat, a non-binary person who is great at tech, makeup, and cars.
- I really enjoyed the perspective of a female Irwin. The way she breaks down the world feels really accurate, if painful.
- Even more than that, having an Irwin who doesn’t rely so heavily on the Newsie was also kind of great.
- Ben is such an interesting character, partially in counterpoint to George, but also due to his loyalties and how the affected the way he went into the world.
- Mat was a blast because it was made so clear throughout the book that they were who they were. Frankly, their growth on the campaign trail was one of my favorite parts of the book.
- And Audrey, honestly, it’s kind of hard to talk about Audrey because, at a certain point in the book, the biggest thing about them is their MYSTERIOUS PAST, which makes writing about a character hard.
- But… this book does a great job of framing the world outside of the Mason’s. Early on there’s a zombie attack taht I’m still thinking about just due to it’s ingenuity.
- To the point that I’m kind of bummed that the Mason’s didn’t seem to even know this bloggin team.
- But this leads back to one of my issues. Aislin and her crew are closely interconnected with the rests of the blogging community in a way that the Mason’s never were. On the one hand that makes sense, if you’re not a name, you need to be more connected to people. But it also seems weird that as the Mason’s were working their way up, the didn’t end up meeting people beyond the ones they worked with….
- Regardless, this crew manages to uncover way more than the Mason’s did (at least in a single book) which also felt really strange. Although, that’s when you end up looking into a MYSTERIOUS PAST as well as the fact that they were on the side that didn’t seem like it would win an election…
- So, backing away with the things I have issues with. This book did some amazing things.
- I really loved the way it brought Wagaman (the woman running who was treated like a bimbo and stripper in earlier books). Talk about weaponized femininity.
- This book turned her into someone that, legit, I want to hang out with. It gives her a chance to drop the persona and be crazy intelligent.
- But also, the candidate for President that this crew was following, Kiersten, was also a fascinating character. And her presence did a great job of showing how different people react to things in a crisis situation.
- I did enjoy the plot of most of this book (although there was one big section that felt more like an excuse to burn time than it did an important plot point) and it did a good job of anchoring time into the plot of the other books.
- George and Shaun Mason were such big names that it was nice to see the way their news and blogging affected the community.
- Honestly, I’m not sure how much more i have to add to this. I really did like a lot of it. I just think this book had weaknesses that wouldn’t have been there if it wasn’t meant to act as a companion novel.
- I appreciated the additional diversity (Feed was an early book in the ouvre, which means it was harder to take steps to include non-white, non-heteronormative characters who did start to show up later in the series).
- Also, I’m reading another book by Mira Grant right now and there are a few tropes she really enjoys, like the morally gray mad-scientist, which I do really enjoy – though maybe reading two of her books in a short period of time wasn’t the best idea.
What I’d Pair it With: Admiral Nelson rum & coke. This book isn’t quite the true Captain Morgan experience, but it’ll do well enough if you’re looking for a fix.
Rating: 3/5. Again, I really enjoyed parts of this book, but I think I would have enjoyed it more if it wasn’t so tied up to the first book in the series.