The Last Mile by David Baldacci – Book Review

The Last Mile by David Baldacci - Book Cover

I bet you’re here too because you thought how great the first book in the Amos Decker series, “Memory Man” was. And why was it good? Well, because although beneath the surface it was just an average crime novel, how unique was that 130-kilo, grumpy, eccentric protagonist who REMEMBERS EVERYTHING that ever happened to him in life, down to the second. Plus, he also had to avenge his family. How good was it? About 8.5/10. And that’s saying something, considering I swore off Baldacci’s books like 10 years ago because he’s such a terrible writer. Okay, fine, but then I couldn’t resist the blurb of “Memory Man.” In short, Amos catched his family’s killer, that rotten scumbag, and joined the FBI as an external consultant, just like Patrick Jane did in the last season of “The Mentalist.”

Now, the FBI doesn’t mess around: Amos has an FBI boss, an FBI colleague, the journalist girl from the previous book, and the psychologist lady on his team. Too much for you? Yeah, it’s a good thing they didn’t recruit Aunt Maggie from the B stairwell into the team because she’s good at solving crossword puzzles. They need a separate bus just to go to a crime scene. Do you think anyone shades these characters? Hell no, except the FBI colleague, who stands out from the rest of the team just because he keeps giving Amos a hard time. The others believe absolutly EVERYTHING he says.

Do you think that’s smart? Hell no! Fatass Amos decides to go on a diet, which he needs, I admit, but he overdoes it, poor bastard, depleting his glycogen stores, which is not good for his BRAIN. This is just my guess, it might be something else, but it definitely targets his BRAIN. Brain tumor or something, I don’t know, but the point is, the guy’s losing his mind.

For example, they kill a witness because of him. Oh well, uh, sorry, says Amos, I didn’t think that would happen. Amos’s only luck is that everyone else in the group is just as imbecile, and in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king, so even with reduced brain function, he manages to move forward.

Yet the „The Last Mile’s” perpetrator comes up with the most elaborate plan to escape his pursuers. Such a complex plan that it keeps him busy for decades. He gets innocent people into prison, whom he has to free again in the end. And he has to keep eliminating people to make everything go according to plan. Meanwhile, Amos, throwing all common sense aside, charges ahead like a happy-go-lucky rhinoceros in a china shop. All his plans fail, he keeps getting duped and made a fool of, while endangering others. And you, watching from the sidelines, keep sighing: Amos, damn it, no! Come on, seriously, don’t, old man!

And do you think it helps when ANOTHER PERSON joins their team? (Yes, you heard that right, now there are six of them on the case!) Hell no. This sucks especially because even if you’re naturally naive, easily influenced, and gullible – just like the author of these lines – you can still mostly see all the plot twists coming. There are two HUGE surprises in it, both of which I figured out as soon as I saw them appear.

So why the hell can’t Amos, this FAT, RETARDED, STUPID IDIOT figure them out, huh?! You know why? Because David Baldacci publishes two books a year. It’s completely inconceivable to publish two books a year that actually make sense. Baldacci has probably become as much of a franchise as James Patterson, where there’s a whole team behind a name, churning out books in multiple genres. So „The Last Mile”, the second book in the Amos Decker series was probably entrusted to the gawky, least skilled member of the team.

That’s why there are such unlikely absurdities in the „The Last Mile”, like Amos making a breakthrough in the investigation with a simple Google search! Or that he, with the same determination as Jack Reacher (see: Die Trying by Lee Child), revealing all his cards (the most worthless hand imaginable, mind you), pisses off his powerful enemies – and then discovers he’s definitely going to get killed for it. And what does he do then? What? He starts whining like a dumbass and waits to be rescued.

4.5/10 (45%)

The Last Mile (Amos Decker #2) by David Baldacci
644 pages, Hardcover
Published in 2016 by Grand Central Publishing

Robin Hood (2010) – Film Review

Robin Hood (2010) movie poster

Ridley Scott’s 2010 work is undoubtedly the most perplexing Robin Hood film ever made (even if you count “Robin Hood: Men in Tights” among them), which, after a decently executed opening battle scene, devolves into a bizarre, multi-stranded mess:

Warning, serious spoilers ahead! But don’t worry about it!

Robin Hood, the SIMPLE ARCHER, under the alias Sir Loxley, casually hands over King Richard’s crown to the Queen Mother (but only by accident, as he gets wasted with his buddies while boating and forgets to hightail).

After that, Robin Hood, the SIMPLE ARCHER under the alias Sir Loxley, infiltrates the Loxley family, and the story here turns into “The Taming of the Shrew” with the understandably hesitant Lady Marion (who, by the way, spends her free time farming with the peasants and feels an irresistible urge to personally rescue the peasants’ goats from the swamp).

Secretly, Robin Hood, the SIMPLE ARCHER, in the DEAD OF NIGHT, plants the grain extorted from Friar Tuck.

The starving village kids (aged 7 to 14) had already moved into Sherwood Forest and self-taught themselves the mysterious art of ninjutsu. They use this mystical method to raid their own village at night and have their elite squad of 5- to 7-year-olds capture Robin Hood hunting in the forest. The beefed-up, terribly HEAVY Robin is, for an unknown reason, transported to their camp Ewok-style. Lucky for him, Lady Marion, the kids’ bestie, happens to be hanging out with them and saves him.

Robin Hood’s soldier buddies serve as a constant source of humor throughout the film, partying without end in STARVING Nottingham. These cheerful, IRRESISTIBLY humorous scenes also feature the film’s most hilarious, usually sexually charged jokes. See “Little” John.

Now, all these are already wonderful things in themselves, but the damn French keep stealing the spotlight from Robin. Two hundred frog-eaters—disguised as English tax collectors—ride around North Anglia trying to stir up the country against the English king. Their cunning plan succeeds because no one notices that they can’t speak a word of English and there are FAR FEWER of them than the entire army of North Anglia’s nobles…

Read more

Die Trying by Lee Child – Book Review

Die Trying by Lee Child - Book cover

Since not too many people read this blog anyway, I think, without becoming a subject of widespread ridicule, I can admit that Major Jack Reacher is one of my greatest role models!

My role model, Major Jack Reacher, finds himself in the back of a van with an eye-catching FBI agent in the second installment of Lee Child’s fantastic series (which I happened to pick up again after about 20 years, so I accidentally read it once more). The agent has been kidnapped. My role model, Major Jack Reacher, just happens to end up in the van. Instead of throwing him out of the car, the incredibly stupid kidnappers decide to take him along. Little do these idiots know what kind of problems they are bringing upon themselves.

My role model, Major Jack Reacher, is strong, smart, skilled, cunning, and more Sherlock Holmes-like (see The Gods of War) than Sherlock Holmes himself. (Notice how he analyzes the girl right from the start.) His sense of justice is off the charts, and he is also the best sniper. (You can bet that some people will get a bullet in their heads.)

Did I mention he’s strong? (Bro, he’s super strong! Comes in handy when tearing chains out of the wall.)

He can pick any lock. (Okay, not every lock, because one catches him. A HUGE ONE. You think that’s why he can’t get in there too? Don’t worry, don’t worry!)

So, when it turns out that the kidnapping is the opening move of a sinister conspiracy, my role model, Major Jack Reacher, sets out to uncover EVERYTHING and take down this whole mess.

This is the second installment of the series, but my role model, Major Jack Reacher already appears in full armament before us. Well, almost, because at this early stage of the series, he still has some fears – although luckily they don’t hold him back for too long. Sometimes he hits the floor – but these occasions only fuel his desire for revenge even more. And here, generously, he allows himself (Chuck Norris style) to contemplate the possibility of a more ordinary life. Indeed, Holly, the FBI agent, is a woman for whom you’d also give up the wandering lifestyle…

Yeah, speaking of Chuck Norris, you think Reacher wouldn’t handle it with him? You’re wrong, darn it! If the old guy stirred up trouble, he’d get his share of it too!

8/10 (80%)

Yeah, yeah, you’re saying there’s this constant counting going on. Well, maybe there’s a bit too much of it, but who’s perfect? Is the end of the book a bit abrupt? Who cares?! It’s 400 pages, it ends when it ends! And that sometimes it’s overexplained? Okay, enough already!

Die Trying (Jack Reacher #2) by Lee Child
432 pages, Paperback
Published in 2012 by Berkley

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo – Book Review

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo - Book cover

Fantasy and heist novel combined? Yes. The roughest face of the harbor district is entrusted with an action spanning countries. The target is a scientist whose invention exponentially amplifies the power of magic users but quickly fries them in return. Well, that doesn’t sound too good.

The first part of Six of Crows is about assembling the team. It’s cool. The characters are unique and memorable, hello Kaz, Nina, and the Wraith! The setting, the slums of Ketterdam, bears an uncanny resemblance to a slightly twisted version of a possibly still-existing Dutch city from the past (maybe Limburg or Utrecht, right now, I can’t really tell all of a sudden). What’s a bit strange, though, is that all the main characters are teens. To cater to the similarly aged target audience? Probably. Or maybe I just hadn’t realized until now that I’m reading young adult fantasy. (Quite possible.) The plan doesn’t work, though, because the human mind, this wonderful contraption, constantly corrects itself, and the characters’ age is automatically adjusted to over 20 in thought. Because it’s unimaginable that 15-17-year-olds are so proficient in so many areas.

The second half is the action itself. Our small team, consisting of ten or twenty-year-olds, infiltrates the Ice Court, THE MOST HEAVILY GUARDED FACILITY IN THE WORLD, and starts wreaking havoc. They roam around based on a rough plan sketched out about a thousand kilometers away and, with the help of the TOOLS FOUND ON THE SPOT, the team’s MacGyvers get to work. Whoever comes their way, they take down. Luckily, there”s hardly any guard IN THE MOST HEAVILY GUARDED FACILITY IN THE WORLD. If a few do happen to stroll around that area, they’re all idiots. And here, the book truly descends into young adult fantasy. Unbelievable and stupid twists alternate, and you just look and think, what the heck is this. Based on the first two chapters of Six of Crows, this story should be at least a masterfully crafted, twist-filled heist with, for example, something like the Casa de Papel TV series.

What somewhat saves this part are the interjected flashbacks depicting the deep, tragic (and silly misunderstandings-filled) backstories of some characters. These create a noticeable contrast with the clumsy chasing in the Ice Court and the lousy closing chapters. It’s as if Leigh Bardugo dreamed up this epic story, then wrote and wrote enthusiastically, and then halfway through, oopsie, got tired of of all the fuss and said, ‘eh, I don’t give a frak,’ and from then on just tried to get through her own book as quickly as possible.

Despite its flaws, Six of Crows still outshines most of the young adult genre. The first half is genuinely high-quality writing, and it doesn’t feature the continuous stupid whining that usually inundates similar works. But still, it’s quite a shame.

Oh, and it has a DOUBLE romantic plot for romance enthusiasts. Mostly, in a young adult way, it consists of yearning.

6.5/10 (65%)

Six of Crows (Six of Crows #1) by Leigh Bardugo
465 pages, Hardcover
Published in 2015 by Henry Holt & Company

The King’s Gambit by John Maddox Roberts – Book Review

The King's Gambit by John Maddox Roberts – Book cover

In the introductory volume of John Maddox Roberts’ historical crime series, now consisting of more than 10 volumes, Decius, a low-ranking Roman official, begins an investigation into the murder of a freed slave. The setting is during the crisis of the Roman Republic in 70 B.C. And guess who Decius encounters right away in the first chapter? Bravo, you guessed it: none other than the up-and-coming Gaius Julius Caesar. Then, of course, other well-known figures of the era appear one after the other, from Pompey the Great to Cicero, and up to the scamp Publius Clodius Pulcher.

Although “The King’s Gambit” is theoretically a crime novel, as it possesses many of its characteristics (coroner, informant, tough sidekick), it feels more like you’re reading a historical novel. The thin thread of the investigation is not very exciting or original (it occasionally uses well-known historical facts clumsily to advance the plot, hello, pirates), and most of the time, it gets overshadowed by discussions of current political and historical conditions. This is partly because young Decius becomes OBSESSED with the idea that he has stumbled into a seditious conspiracy. And that everyone is against him. What?!

The conspiracy accusation later bursts and degrades into a simple political maneuver. There you go! However, Decius doesn’t give up; he continues to pursue the case. No one understands why he is so enthusiastically involved in a miserable slave’s affair. No one. Not even you.

The first installment of John Maddox Roberts’ SPQR series mostly resembles the pilot episode of a detective TV series that hasn’t found its own voice yet, but it’s not terribly bad, and you hope it will find its way eventually.

What, however, can unequivocally be credited to the “The King’s Gambit’s” merit is the seemingly entirely authentic portrayal of the historical period. I abandoned the Gordianus series in a similar genre precisely because it lacked this authenticity. Unfortunately for it, I had just finished reading Colleen McCullough’s monumental Masters of Rome series, and it quickly fell short in comparison.

That’s not the case with this book. On the contrary, seamlessly integrated into the text, almost every other paragraph provides information that helps you understand the political and social conditions of the era more clearly or makes you feel like you are strolling alongside the eager beaver Decius on the narrow, cobblestone streets of Rome.

6.9/10 (69%)

The King’s Gambit (SPQR #1) by John Maddox Roberts
274 pages, Paperback
Published in 1990 by Minotaur Books

Gods of War by James Lovegrove – Book Review

Gods of War by James Lovegrove - Book cover

In James Lovegrove’s crime novel “The Gods of War,” Sherlock Holmes has now reached his sixtieth year. It’s no wonder, then, that his joints creak and crack. Fat-ass Dr. Watson, truth be told, can’t keep up with the pace as he used to. Luckily for them, they don’t really need to in this novel. The excellent detective, for instance, doesn’t even bother to use his unique method to casually deduce how his long-lost colleague traveled on the train, the biggest cliché in every Holmes story, since he is, as he puts it, “too excited about his new case”… Which turns out to be a pitiful burglary.

It seems cheap, doesn’t it? Yet, how much would it have cost Lovegrove to figure out that the person sitting across from Watson was an aging, one-legged Devonshire horse trader, intending to buy feed for his prize-winning colt, Bucephalus… while on the right side of the doctor, an old lady wearing a pheasant-feathered hat was traveling to visit her sister, while she was reading the fourth edition of “The Secret of the Cloister.”

Nothing at all.

The situation improves a bit when they stumble upon a new case, but not by much. After numerous mishaps and awkward encounters, the two characters, resembling a parody of themselves, uncover a mystery that would feel embarrassing even in a young adult fantasy. Not to mention that the great revelation lacks any excitement or unexpected twist. The two old bones wander aimlessly through about two-thirds of the plot, then Holmes unexpectedly leaves, returns, and announces that he has solved everything. And you just stare, realizing he even found out a bunch of other unnecessary things.

James Lovegrove’s writing style in this book more or less resembles Conan Doyle’s not-so-fresh prose, excluding a few awkward, anachronistic expressions. However, some supporting characters simply don’t fit into the early 20th century., like the overly emancipated costume shop girl who invests all her savings in a small-town costume store. (Pre-market research rules!) Or the childishly malicious and scheming police officer.

But these mean nothing compared to an unparalleled feat of authorship that I have never encountered in my decades-long reading career! Ladies and gentlemen, behold the man, James Lovegrove, who writes in SLOW MOTION:

Listen up!: “Despite being ten years older, a love affair blossomed between us. But after a few months, his behavior changed, so I broke up with him.” This takes ten pages in the book.

What would be a sentence in a normal case takes at least half a page in this book. Everything is explained to the extreme. If the characters reach a house, you can be sure that a one-page description of the building’s history, plus the impressions of “The Gods of War” characters about it, is coming.

If Aleister Crowley, the eccentric magician, happens to be mentioned, you can read an additional two exhaustive pages about this peculiar figure’s work. If someone asks a character about the time, they will tell the time AND ALSO narrate who they inherited their watch from, where they got the leather strap, and that three weeks ago, they once forgot to wind it, making them late for Aunt Maggie’s tea party.

Sounds boring?



Gods of War (The New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Titan Books #5) by James Lovegrove
296 pages, Paperback
Published in 2014 by Titan Books

Blood Will Follow by Snorri Kristjansson – Book Review

Blood Will Follow by Snorri Kristjansson - Book Cover

King Olav Tryggvason decides to unite the whole of Norway in the holy name of Christ. Anyone unwilling to share his faith, he wishes to cleave in the head with a battle-axe. The threads converge beneath the walls of the city of Stenvik, where those who adhere to their well-established, low-hassle religion, resisting King Olav’s plans, also wish to strike him in the head with a battle-axe.

The first part of Snorri Kristjansson’s trilogy was quite alright, although it might have dampened your enthusiasm with too many indistinguishable characters, constant shifts in perspective, and a slightly clumsily starting plot. Fortunately, during the siege, the story became much more intense, although the incorporation of blood magic, reminiscent of fantasy, into a historically grounded novel might raise eyebrows.

However, the real problems arise in the second part “Blood Will Follow”. It’s as if every minor flaw so far is magnified. The relationships between the characters become erratic, and their actions contradict EVERYTHING. For instance, two deceased characters from the first part are revealed to be alive, only to die AGAIN a few pages later due to a lame plot twist. WTF? Characters who spent the first part engaged in continuous intrigues here embark on the MOST TRANSPARENT conspiracy in world history and, well, fail miserably. WTF?? A mediocre and clumsy schemer herbalist, not occupying a high rank in the hierarchy, starts puppeteering the previously strong-willed king on strings and takes over the direction of military operations. WTF???

And that’s just one thread. In the other, two characters wander the roads of Norway and get involved in mundane situations more and more boring. The negative climax here is probably when one of them feeds a damn dog for an ENTIRE PAGE.

If the uneasy feeling that “Blood Will Follow” has lost its historical book character has been lurking around you so far, now it kicks towards you full force with a steel-toed boot.

And then, listen, what do you say about these two characters actually dying at various points in the plot but somehow miraculously surviving? It’s suspicious that MAYBE figures from Scandinavian mythology are lurking around them. Could one of them be Odin himself? I dunno, but no god could make me read this amateurish nonsense until it’s revealed.

Swords of Good Men 7/10 (70%)
Blood Will Follow 4/10 (40%)

Blood Will Follow (The Valhalla Saga #2) by Snorri Kristjansson
308 pages, Hardcover
Published in 2014 by Jo Fletcher Books

Saga: Volume One by Brian K. Vaughan · Fiona Staples – Comic Book Review

Saga: Volume One by Brian K. Vaughan · Fiona Staples - comic book cover

“Am I shitting? It feels like I’m shitting!”

Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples’ comic series “Saga” begins with these remarkeble words, right in the midst of a childbirth, and if you gather from all this that MAYBE shocking you is the goal, you’re not entirely wrong… But of course, this is the 21st century, hello, who doesn’t give a FUCK? who doesn’t give a good goddamn?

However, I wouldn’t particularly recommend this work to the prudish, as this is not the ONLY case. For example, since you see dangling male genitalia several times, you also visit a brothel planet where you stumble upon an orgy. Then there’s a character with more legs than arms and more eyes than ears – and you might start to doubt yourself whether is it possible that you’re aberrant a bit when you think that this beautiful creature is very sexy?

But yes, it’s very possible!

Moreover, she goes through all her scenes in a monokini. So, if you didn’t know what arachnophilia is, now you definitely will!

And that’s not even the point.

The point is, there is the largest planet in the universe, and it has a moon, and they are at war with each other. To avoid destroying their own celestial bodies, they OUTSOURCE the war to ALL other planets. This is, of course, nonsense because it would be enough if they didn’t go near each other, and that’s it, but other than that, almost everything is fine in the comic series “Saga.”

The two main characters on opposing sides fall in love (one has wings and is SUSPECTED to be a huge slut, the other one is a conscientious objector with horns on his head and a cool little magic sword). They have a child, and from now on, the three of them are against the world(s).

On these worlds, you encounter a tremendous brainstorm of ideas: from screen-headed noblemen to ghost-babysitters, spaceships that are bred in the forest, EVERYTHING is there like in an amusement park. As if they mixed The Fifth Element with Star Wars, Harry Potter, and a trophy catalog, but just to be safe, they threw in a bit of Lone Wolf and Cub.

If you really wanted to nitpick about the work, you would find very few handles: You know since Once upon a time that every spell has a price, but this price shouldn’t be any random stupidity. Oh, and the part set on Sextillion is slightly out of character.

But otherwise, it’s adorable.

8.5/10 (85%)

Saga: Volume One by Brian K. Vaughan & Fiona Staples
160 pages, Paperback
Published in 2012 by Image Comics

(Saga: Volume One collects Saga #1-6.)

Review of the next volume:
Saga: Volume Two

The Helicopter Heist by Jonas Bonnier – Book Review

The Helicopter Heist by Jonas Bonnier - book cover

Jonas Bonnier’s book is roughly a Chance Meeting on a Dissecting Table of a Scandinavian crime and documentary novel. Or something like that. Actually, not entirely because the former genre is only hinted at by the setting, however, the incessant whining of nameless characters throughout pages is not the case with this book. And if you’re worried that, since the book is a true story, it will just throw facts at you, that’s not the case either because “The Helicopter Heist” is thoroughly fictionalized.

In 2009, a few guys robbed the G4S cash logistics company’s warehouse in Stockholm, using a helicopter. (Millions of crowns were just flying around.) The novel tells the story of the preparation and the heist. The greater part of the book, that naturally centering around the preparations, can be described, well, at most, with the term moderately interesting.

It’s not as exciting and twisty as the heist genre would dictate; that mostly applies to the action part. However, “The Helicopter Heist” is still enjoyable because the characters are very well-crafted. These guys are criminals, but they’ve been made so interesting and even likable that, darn it, you start rooting for them to succeed.

The police subplot seems a bit unnecessary; it mostly hangs in the air – i mean, near THAT helicopter. Although there’s this police girl, Miss Thurn, and you find yourself rooting for her a bit too.

The closing chapter, framing the story, is totally meaningless and unnecessary. It feels like Bonnier just added it to his book as an end in itself.

However, if you’ve read the book, you must find out what happened to the guys. And you need to do it yourself, a-deary me, because instead of the usual way of closing this type of book, it’s missing from the end. (See: Wikipedia: Västberga helicopter robbery)

7.5/10 (75%)

416 pages, Paperback
Published in 2017 by Simon & Schuster Canada

Chasing the Dead by Tim Weaver – Book Review

Chasing the Dead by Tim Weaver - Book Cover

Maybe you’re already drooling in anticipation because this seems like one of those dark and gloomy crime novels, similar to what Dennis Lehane usually writes. And indeed, it starts off well; you immediately empathize with David Raker after his great tragedy, and you might even grow fond of this innocent good-hearted soul. The investigation is okay, with a few minor bumps in the dialogues (- Yes? – Yes. – Really? – Really. – But are you sure, really sure?)

Especially because you get a downright deranged opponent who scares the crap out of you. So much so that you don’t even notice that many of the characters seem rather odd. For example, amid some grumbling, they readily betray their well-paying clients for a measly 200 pounds or – and this is even more interesting – UNEXPECTEDLY end their own lives.

Then the investigation turns into action, and you think, well, it’s still okay, around 7/10. And exactly at this point, when Raker should call the cops because he understands this case has grown beyond him, you realize that Tim Weaver, the author, probably took a little break while writing. Not too much, just enough to travel to an illegal clinic in Thailand and have his left brain hemisphere responsible for rationality removed. But the whole thing.

From this point on, Raker uncovers THE DUMBEST CONSPIRACY IN THE WORLD (see The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu as the second dumbest), where participants, out of pure good intentions, want to help others by subjecting them to brainwashing. If someone doesn’t like that they want to help him, they kill him. If anyone gets close to them who is not a prospective patient, they also kill him – all the while littering half of England with corpses to ERASE their own tracks. Meanwhile, their terrified, brainwashed, religious fanatic ex-abuse victims (drug addicts and criminals) infiltrate the HIGHEST levels of the English administration and police. To spy. I must say, they really don’t lack confidence!

The diabolical evil turns out to be a Garden-variety psychopath (Tedious, very tedious.) – And about Raker, that he’s an pathetic idiot who shoots his opponent in the leg, then starts running away from his limping pursuer. Yes, yes, you guessed it right: THE MAN SHOT IN THE LEG eventually sets a trap for Raker and CAPTURES him.

And then there are still fifty pages left, who knows why, because pretty much everything has been figured out. Well, because the author, Tim Weaver, let’s remember THIS NAME!!!, probably came to the realization that this half a brain is still too much for him. So, he made another visit to that specific clinic in Thailand and had the remaining creativity removed from his right brain hemisphere. One can only imagine what this poor guy came up with with just a quarter of a brain…


Chasing the Dead (David Raker #1) by Tim Weaver
304 pages, Paperback
Published July 19, 2016 by Penguin Publishing Group