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Duckett & Dyer: Dicks for Hire by G.M. Nair #BookReview

Michael Duckett is fed up with his life. His job is a drag, and his roommate and best friend of fifteen years, Stephanie Dyer, is only making him more anxious with her lazy irresponsibility. Things continue to escalate when they face the threat of imminent eviction from their palatial 5th floor walk-up and find that someone has been plastering ads all over the city for their Detective Agency.

The only problem is: He and Stephanie don’t have one of those.

Despite their baffling levels of incompetence, Stephanie eagerly pursues this crazy scheme and drags Michael, kicking and screaming, into the fray only to find that they are way out of their depth. They stumble upon a web of missing people that are curiously linked to a sexually audacious theoretical physicist and his experiments with the fabric of space-time. And unless Michael and Stephanie can put their personal issues aside and fix the multi-verse, the concept of existence itself may, ironically, no longer exist.

Title: Duckett & Dyer: Dicks for Hire | Author: G.M. Nair | Publisher: dSdF | Pub. Date: 30th March 2019 | Pages: 298 | ISBN: 9781733894319 | Genre: Science Fiction | Language: English | Starred Review: No | Source: Received copy from author for review consideration.

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Duckett & Dyer: Dicks for Hire Review

This is a case where I’m honestly not sure if it was the book, or me as a reader. Duckett & Dyer has an interesting premise, a great cover, and some fun moments, but ultimately, it fell pretty flat for me.

Michael Duckett is stuck in a rut. He’s in his mid-20s, working a corporate job he hates for not nearly enough money, pulling more than his weight to keep his deadbeat best friend and roommate, Stephanie Dyer, afloat. His rut is threatened though when he begins receiving phone calls and, more alarmingly, in person “visits” from people wishing to hire Duckett and Dyer, private investigators. With no signs of the requests stopping, and no idea who took out that ad that’s driving “business” to them. Stephanie convinces Michael to take a case, if only to solve the mystery of who is so invested in them becoming PIs.

I think humour in fiction can be hard to pull off, and to me personally, it often comes across as either trying too hard or a little too self-congratulatory. Duckett & Dyer pulls it off better than most, but I guess it’s time that I admit that it just isn’t an element I particularly like to read. As characters, I had a hard time investing in Michael and Stephanie. Michael is just too hangdog, too unwilling to take any responsibility for his current life, to be sympathetic or particularly likeable (though I did warm to him a bit as the book went on). Stephanie, however, just rubbed me entirely the wrong way. Her humour didn’t work for me, she’s lazy and has no grounding in the real world, and overall as a character she’s just kind of gross (case in point: several non-consensual kiss scenes as a recurring gag). I don’t necessarily need to love the characters to love a book, but these guys just annoyed me.

 Add in time travel and alternate universes (concepts which I enjoy, but which never fail to make my brain hurt), and it wasn’t a winning combo for me. I found the idea interesting, but it dragged on too long and there were some bits that kept repeating in each universe that got old fast.  

I’d say this book may click with readers who enjoy books like The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (which I was also not a fan of, blasphemy, I know) where the humour and sci-fi are presented in about equal measure. For me personally though, this was a miss.

You can find this book at many retailers via clicking on the appropriate link on Goodreads (buying direct from retailers is a good way to support indie authors); however, in the spirit of supporting literacy programs, we would like to point out that you may be able to purchase this book through BetterWorldBooks.

Published inScience Fiction Book ReviewsUncategorizedUnstarred Reviews
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