A Review by Melodee Aaron
Before I get to the actual review, there’s something that you, the reader, need to know…
I’ve known Jamie for a number of years now. In that time, I’ve read a number of his works and, in some cases, ripped him a new one over poor editing. I’m happy to say, however, that with each new story from Jamie the issues have become fewer and less obvious. Maybe he really was listening?
Mirror Thief continues that pattern. Are there errors in grammar, syntax, and spelling? Yes, of course…that happens to everyone. Are the errors so bad or numerous that they turn the reading of the story from what should be a pleasure into a tedious chore? No, not even close.
This novella from Jamie is very readable and the problems are fading into the background.
Now, on to the real reason we’re here…
Mirror Thief tells the story of Dario Fisher, a young man in serious trouble. He just came out of a coma, he has no job, he has no place to live, and he has no idea what to do next. Then Mia, an attractive young nurse caring for him, moves from being in his life professionally to a more personal level. Despite the growing feelings between Dario and Mia, things go from bad to worse…suddenly, they are both unemployed and being threatened with homelessness. But Dario has a trick up his sleeve…
It seems the accident that landed him in the hospital has left him with a strange power to interact with mirrors in more than a reflective way. Dario can actually reach through the mirror into the dark and shadowy world behind the silvery images the rest of us see.
To meet the needs of living in a modern world, Dario, at first on his own and later aided by Mia, turns to theft to get money to survive. After a series of successes in ever increasing heists of cash from various sources, Mia and Dario decide on one final job that will net them enough to retire in comfort…they plan to rob Dario’s estranged parents.
But things go wrong in a terrible manner when the mirror Dario occupies is broken into shards.
Honestly, I had a little trouble suspending disbelief in the first fifteen or so pages. Dario wakes from a two-week coma and the reaction of the medical staff—Mia included—is basically, “Oh, you’re awake. How about some lunch?” At a different point in the story rather than the very beginning, this sweeping under the rug of realistic reactions would likely have worked, but not as the opening scene. I would like to have seen a more realistic approach here. All that said, Dear Reader, just push through. There are things in those first pages you need to know.
In the three “jobs” Dario and Mia pull off before they decide to hit his folks, two of the people robbed don’t deserve it in my opinion. Dario makes restitution to one of them but not the other. For this reason, I still can’t decide if I love Dario and Mia or hate them. I guess the reality is that it’s a little of both and it varies based on the scene. Overall, I like them more than hate them, and by a good margin.
OK…most of this is the SF author in me talking. I think that Jamie missed a number of great chances for plot twists and sidebars with the physics of mirrors. The alert reader will wonder about the impact of first and second surface mirrors on Dario’s abilities. Also coming to mind is the use of liquid mirrors (stationary or rotating) in the equation. Could Dario travel in four-space by entering a telescope mirror? And then there is the whole idea of FTL velocities through the reflective qualities of a prism.
Perhaps Jamie is saving these things for a sequel…Mirror Thief leaves the option open for that.
Overall, I enjoyed Mirror Thief.
As I mentioned, there are a few grammar and usage issues, but not enough to be a real issue, even for a Grammar Nazi like me.
There are a few things that could be changed to make the early story more realistic, but again this is not a major problem as long as the reader can suspend disbelief for a few pages.
I give Mirror Thief 4.5 out of 5 stars.
Mirror Thief is available on Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/Mirror-Thief-Jamie-Heppner-ebook/dp/B00FFRD672