Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Hangar 84, no Catch 22

It pains me to give a poor review but I must be honest or lose credibility.  Hangar 84 is a flawed piece of work.  It is ostensibly a satire about the Roswell Incident but when I threw in the towel at the midpoint, I hadn't encountered a single alien.  The biggest problem is the pace.  It just doesn't move.  Another issue is the dialogue which is usually a very dense and sloppy dialect that does not read convincingly and is not employed uniformly.  The dialect even creeps into the third person narration, which I found extremely odd.  Furthermore, the same dialect is put indiscriminately into the mouths of army brass and New Mexico hayseeds.  As for those hayseeds, they all have Anglo names, which is a mighty strange take on the population of New Mexico.  The humor is good for a smile now and then but there isn't enough good quality wackiness to overcome the inertia of that nearly retrograde pace.

This is disappointing not only because it's a premise that begs to be lampooned, but also because with a greater effort and some hypercritical self-editing it could be made to work.  I would urge the author to rework it, and if he hasn't already done, make a trip to Roswell.

Love the cover, though.

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