Chapter by Chapter features me reading one chapter of the selected book at the time and reviewing it as if I were reviewing an episode of a TV show or an issue of a comic. There will be spoilers if you haven’t read to the point I have, and if you’ve read further I ask that you don’t spoil anything further into the book. Think of it as read-along book club.
Last week’s bunch of chapters surprised me in that even the Op-Center chapter was fairly decent and moved the plot along. Of course we still had a woman disappointed that the happily married boss is happily married and worried about his son, because we can’t assume the characters will get better, but as Op-Center scenes go I didn’t come out of it sorry I read it. Granted, the interesting stuff is still happening in Korea and I wish it was the sole focus of the book but at this point I’ll take the victories I can.
- Chapter 56: Wednesday, 2:45 AM, The DMZ: 3 pages
- Chapter 57: Wednesday, 2:55 AM, Seoul: 2 pages
- Chapter 58: Tuesday, 1:10 AM, Op-Center: 6 pages
I wonder if this set will match up to the last one or if the Op-Center crew will continue to live down to my expectations?
Not much happens with Eyepatch and his pal Yoo. He learns about Gregory’s meeting and decides he needs to kill him before he gains the North any sympathy and possibly proves their innocence. It makes me wonder more about the joint conspiracy though. The North Korean faction seems willing to take the blame and look evil but there is a way for Eyepatch to turn this to his favor if all he wants is to restart the war and get them killing each other. Why is he less willing to have his side take the blame than the Northern general?
Back with the good Kims (depending on which side of the DMZ you’d be rooting for if Eyepatch succeeds) girl-Kim gets Hwan to the hospital, telling the doctors that they were going to “their” cabin when they stopped for a hitchhiker and he tried to kill them, Hwan having to kill the man. It’s a good cover that protects both of them. She also contacts the KCIA to tell them what really happened, then takes the car joining one of her usual compatriots. I’m guess girl-Kim isn’t with Eyepatch but we’ll see what happens.
This last chapter actually contains two scenes without a time code interrupting. So they CAN do that and just choose not to. It’s not a choice I would have gone with. Matt figures out how the virus got in and don’t ask me to explain it. I’m no computer expert; read the book. (Not that I really recommend it at this point mind you.) One clue they found was a copyright for Angirus Software, “Angirus” being one of the romanizations of Godzilla’s first kaiju opponent. You know, this guy.
I thought that was a nice nod, but real clue is the date, 1988, which provides the hint that whoever wrote this is part of a group either for or against reunification of Korea and fancies himself as Korean Riddler. That’s the example Matt uses anyway. Later, Paul calls the President and convinces him that they’re being suckered and should find a peaceful solution but the President is still trying to show he really is strong, but the call is interrupted by a call from the hospital…Paul’s son is going to be okay! It’s a good news/bad news kind of chapter, going back to bad when the nitwit President’s men find out where the plane that shot their spy plane down is and orders an air strike. This is a man who is not paying attention. During the call Paul got an email about Hwan’s situation, so at least our supposed heroes are in line with our actual heroes.
Overall not a bad chapter. The President being a dumbass (no political comments please) works for the story and overall it’s better than we’ve been getting from the other side. Can they stop Eyepatch from gassing the daylights out of North Korea and starting a new war? What is girl-Kim going to do and will she be part of stopping the conspiracy? Can Op-Center ever recover from being horrible people for most of the book? Probably not but answers will be forthcoming as our journey continues.