Mixing punk-rock angst, guerrilla journalism, and the post-apocalyptic underground, Tin Crickets follows a crew of camera-wielding misfits into a night of gunfire and noise at full tilt.
Night after night, Tommy Molotov and his friends break curfew. With a 16mm camera and a handful of stolen keycards, they sneak into the restricted sectors of Fallback to film what the City doesn’t want any of its citizens to see. Unsanitary conditions in the hydro farms. Toxins in the water supply. Police brutality. Despair that has been swept into the shadows.
Day after day, Tommy plays his Riot Reels in secret, for anyone who will watch, hoping that the truth will start a revolution.
When Tommy and his friends break into a highly-guarded docking bay and film evidence of a grievous conspiracy, revolution seems closer than ever. Now they just have to get home alive, with the footage intact.
And it’s going to be a long night.
I received this book from the author via BookSirens for the purpose of this review. All comments and opinions are entirely my own.
“If you tell someone what you mean, they wonder if you’re lying. If you make them guess, they don’t.” -Pop, Tin Crickets
Tin Crickets is not for the faint of heart–or stomach. It is the type of book that has your knuckles turning white and 100% of your focus because you truly do not know what to expect to happen next.
Goodreads and Amazon both say it has 510 pages, and I find that hard to believe because I started and finished it in the same day. If that is really true, that is the fastest I have ever read in my life and it’s largely to do to the fact that there are no stopping points. I mean, you’re not going to pause a movie in the middle of the action right? Well, the same goes for this book, and it is all completely action. I literally couldn’t stop.
My favorite aspect of the book is the characters. They are all so dynamic, passionate about their own things, different from each other, and yet they all worked together incredibly well. They made mistakes, they got angry, but they also each had a part to play in the plot, there was no “one man show”. This group will truly have their readers rooting for them at all twists and turns.
However, the ending of the book left me a little disappointed. I am unsure if Tin Crickets is supposed to be a standalone novel, or the opening to a series, and because of that I am really on the fence of how to rate it. If it’s a standalone novel, I think the ending left a lot of unanswered questions and a lot of the hype and terror about “Blankface” was terribly disappointing if that is the case, I won’t say why to avoid spoilers. But if this is an opening to a series, then it was excellent, because there is a lot of unfinished plotline, and even after flipping the final page, we are still asking questions. If there was a sequel right now, I’d buy it, no hesitation. Because this book was published in 2017, I am going to assume that it is a standalone until further notice.
The action is incredibly detailed and gritty, and the cursing is very high, though it was lower than I expected for a punk novel (many uses of the smaller curse words, “SOB”, and”gd”, as well as only a few uses of the “f-bomb”). There is absolutely no sexual content at all, also surprising for a punk novel.
So overall, I am going to rate Tin Crickets 3 out of 5 stars, because though I was incredibly interested in the story, in the end, I feel like a lot of the challenges and terror that the characters faced didn’t answer some of the biggest questions I had that certainly seemed promised. But I do recommend it as an enthralling read and if you like Dystopian Suspense (some reviewers are calling it “horror”, though I think it teeters on that line just barely–it’s more like the Maze Runner series in my opinion. In fact, fans of the Maze Runner series would actually really like this book a lot.).