Manhattan Lockdown by Paul Batista

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So obviously I wasn’t very impressed with this book. It was compelling in parts but even though I was rushing ahead to see what would happen, I found it pretty disappointing overall. Certainly a topical theme though and it had potential but didn’t really go where I would’ve liked it too.

New York City has been attacked, and the Apache Code has been issued, closing every bridge, road, and tunnel in and out of the city. Mayor Roland Fortune, Police Commissioner Gina Carbone, and Dr. Gabriel Hauser are all trying to save their city in the best way they know how. But whose motives can be believed and trusted? And how long can the city last before it’s brought to its knees.

First of all, it started off very, very dry, so much so that I was dreading reading it. It did pick up somewhere around the middle so for a while I felt invested in the plot. One thing the book does well is switch perspectives so we get to know several major characters as these attacks and their aftermath are ongoing. I liked following some of these characters but there were few instances that grew to many where several of them made racist, sexist, and homophobic comments, which by the end of the book seemed more like it was coming from the author than these numerous characters.

I think this was supposed to be an uncomfortable read, somewhat touching on who is causing the most damage in terrorist attacks, looking at who we’re blaming and who faces the consequences. However, it never went all the way with this theme and frankly, it just ending up sounding racist. It was still uncomfortable but probably not in the way the author intended.

While it starts off somewhat straightforwardly, the way the plot develops is intriguing and I’m still a little confused by the ending (which I consider a good sign) but the stereotypes it seemed to promote just ruins everything else. I’m sure this won’t be a book I look back on fondly.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review


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