I’ve never read any Russel Middlebrook series before, in fact this is my first ever book by [a:Brent Hartinger|53984|Brent Hartinger|https://d.gr-assets.com/authors/1351719309p2/53984.jpg]. The blurb was what intrigued me to this story and it didn’t disappoint.
Russel — spelling with one “l” — was a twenty three year old guy still looking for purpose in life, or as he liked to say, deciding between Unstoppable Carrier Drive and Passionate Aimlessness. He lived in a houseboat on Lake Union, Seattle, with his friends Gunnar and Min; had two jobs that he hated, and still pining for Kevin, his first love in high school. Didn’t look like he had much going his way, did he. The story, told from his POV was refreshing, funny, and often not quite sensible (it's really like we thought aloud in our head, talking to ourselves). But definitely entertaining!
What happened with Russel throughout the story was just like any other people could experience. He had hook up(s?), promising dinner date(s?) that turned awkward, hurtful or disappointing; but he enjoyed his hated
low pay life-guarding job enough (he could ogle people in their swimsuits on the job!)
, even did a heroic thing saving people from drowning; he’s given to nosebleed every few weeks but had learned to cope with it. Russel really was your average young man, a bit whiny, childish, melodramatic, but he’s kind and loyal to his friends. I like the dynamics between our MC and his friends, or even people he just met. There were some way off contexts explanation or dragging conversation that had me going “huh?” and that big no no scene that really disappointed me when he met with Kevin at their hometown end up with them having sex. Kevin’s partner might be an ass but he’s in a relationship, and what he did with Russel was cheating. There was no excuse, guys; no matter how related it was to the story. I’m disappointed with you! *SNIFFED* The Bigfoot hunting might be over the top, but hey! People had their own obsessions. To each their own, I say!
Misgivings aside, overall I really enjoyed reading this. I might try Mr. Hartinger’s other book, or better yet, read the next installment of Russel Middlebrook: The Futon Years in "Barefoot in the City of Broken Dreams". Rounded up from 3.65 stars
from me.Note: ARC was kindly provided by BK Books via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.