Typing Duane Swierzynski is hard enough, thank goodness I don’t have to pronounce it in a blog (I’d go with Sweer-zin-ski ?). This guy rocks. All his books a fun, page-turning tearways that are pure reading enjoyment. You can tell he enjoys writing his books just as much as you enjoy reading them.
The first book of his I read was THE WHEELMAN, which is probably his least crazy novel. Lennon, a mute Irish getaway driver has planned the perfect bank robbery. But a story about a bank robbery where everything goes to plan wouldn’t be very exciting. This is full of twists and turns you almost can’t keep up with them and you won’t see any of them coming!
This was followed up with THE BLONDE, which can easily be enjoyed as a stand-alone story but you can appreciate it even more if you have already read THE WHEELMAN. A professional hitman from then end of that novel returns to take the lead role is this book. This novel is all about the premise. A guy decides to stop for a drink at the airport after his flight home. Sitting next to him at the bar is a very attractive blonde woman who proceeds to tell him that she has poisoned his drink and he will die unless he does everything she tells him. What follows is a completely insane roller-coaster of a thriller.
Just when you think Duane couldn’t come up with a more bizarre book there’s SEVERANCE PACKAGE. This book make Die Hard sound tame. The book opens with a group of employees gathering for a special staff meeting at the office on a Saturday morning. No one is happy. When they arrive in the conference room there are bottles of champagne and orange juice laid out for them. The meeting starts and the manager of the office announces to everyone that the company they work for is actually a shell for an intelligence agency and they are being wound up. (The intelligence agency is the company the hitman from the previous books works for) Everybody has two options: they can drink the orange juice and champagne which is poisoned or he will shoot them. Escape is futile as all the exits are rigged with explosives. What follows is complete and utter chaos! It’s brilliant.
Last year Anthony Zuiker, the creator of CSI, launched the first interactive digi-novel LEVEL 26: DARK ORIGINS. He had a co-writer for the book which was Duane Swiercynski and his stamp is all over the book. I would go so far as to shelve the book with his other novels.
His new book is EXPIRATION DATE. This time Duane is tackling time travel and of course does it in is own special way. Mickey Wade has had to move into his grandfather’s apartment in a seedy party of Philadelphia. After drinking a few too many beers he pops some pre-1980s aspirin only to wake up in 1972 on his birthday. Once the “aspirins” wear off Mickey returns home. But he soons figures out how to control his time travel but there is a catch. He can only return to his birthday and if any part of his body is exposed to direct light his loses that part of his body. Mickey begins to explore 1972 but soon uncovers a greater mystery linked to the death of his father. The space/time continuum is now at the mercy of Duane Swiercynski. Will anything survive?