There is plenty of action in the novel, but there is a deep sadness about it as well. I certainly would not want to rob anyone of the ending, but I will say that it is not in any way what I would consider an obvious one. Marchese’s ability to make us sympathize with some very questionable characters is a real talent, and one which should serve him well in the future.
He is off to a great start with Deadman’s Bust, for this is a book with a highly intriguing premise, told with the authority of someone who sounds as if he were there. The musical cues that provide a sense of the period are well-chosen.
But the most interesting manner in which Marchese evokes the weirdness of the first President Bush era is through the eyes of a guy who participated in Desert Storm. He is gung-ho, and an excellent addition to the team. But his comments about the U.S. "beating a country the size of California, then crowing about it" still ring true. I remember that very creepy "bully" feeling all too well. To act like Desert Storm was a war between equal powers was absurd. To add to the validity of the comment in the book, it comes from a veteran. And just to be clear, I have heard similar sentiments with my own ears from guys who were there.
Deadman’s Bust is not a political book, though. I beleive that Marchese's goal is to bring the era to life by including these comments, rather than making any policy statements. Deadman's Bust is recommended, and I look forward to reading more from this promising new. author.