Title: The Human Body
Author: Paolo Giordano
Release Date: October 2, 2014
Medium: eBook (ARC – Advanced Readers’ Copy)
Finished Reading: October 17, 2014
About: “A platoon of young men and one woman soldier leaves Italy for one of the most dangerous places on earth. Forward Operating Base (FOB) in the Gulistan district of Afghanistan is nothing but an exposed sandpit—scorched by inescapable sunlight and deadly mortar fire.
Each member in the platoon manages the toxic mix of boredom and fear that is life at the FOB in his own way. Brash Cederna shamelessly picks on the virgin Ietri. Giulia Zampieri seemingly navigates this male-dominated world with ease—until two male comrades start vying for her attention. And for medical officer Alessandro Egitto, the FOB serves as an escape from a real life even more dangerous than one fought with guns. At night, lying on their beds, they feel the beat of their own hearts, the ceaseless activity of the human body. But when a much-debated mission goes devastatingly awry, the soldiers find their lives changed in an instant.”
I received this eBook early from Penguin. Shout out to Penguin before we begin! (Commence shouting.) Also a huge apology to Penguin Publishing. I was supposed to have my review written and posted several weeks ago, but apparently I’m a horrible ARC reader. To be fair, I did what I could with what I was given.
Let me preface this review by saying that I do not have a whole lot of experience with war stories. The only author I’ve really read that focuses on the war and what it does to the soldiers is Tim O’Brien. So here’s going to be a random list of my thoughts about this book. Here we go:
- When one of the characters (can’t for the life of me remember which, and I sure do not want to re-open this book to find out) was going through his bag he listed a ton of stuff. The cool thing – I knew exactly what he was talking about. I knew the night vision and all of the gear. My full-time job sells a crap-ton of that stuff. I was a little giddy at that point. And that was the last smile this book got from me (and not in a good way).
- There was a disconnect between me and the characters. I had a really hard time keeping them straight as well. I’m not sure if this was intentional, my guess is no, but I just couldn’t get into this book for that reason. This book is very-character driven, but I was not feeling it. I’m usually huge into characters and development and all those awesome writing techniques, but not this time. I mostly didn’t care about the characters. This could have something to do with the disconnect, or it could be intentional. Whatever the reason, I just was not jiving.
- I put it down for a really long time. This could explain why I couldn’t keep characters straight, but I needed a break. I took the break, mostly, so that I could read the book club book Player Piano by Kurt Vonnegut. It was a nice break, and I considered not finishing it. I didn’t think that getting my first eARC and not finishing it would be a good thing though, so I pushed on.
- This book, as mentioned before, just wasn’t for me, which is unfortunate. I’ve read that his first novel was exceptional, so maybe I’ll have to check that one out, but for now I’m taking a break from Giordano.
My rating and why: I gave this book two stars. I read it and finished it, but just did not like it. Not my cup of tea. Sorry for not writing my review on time, Penguin. Maybe that’s why I didn’t win the raffle for the following month’s book. Oh, well. Better luck next time.
Are you a fan of war stories? Have you read anything by Tim O’Brien? Did you read Giordano’s first novel? Let me know in the comments below! Like. Comment. Follow. New book review to come tomorrow!
Until next time my fellow bibliophiles!