The other day I finished reading Tim Downs’s latest Bug Man novel, Nick of Time. If you’re not familiar with the series, take Sherlock Holmes (I’m talking Robert Downey Jr. in Guy Richie’s 2009 Sherlock Holmes) and transport him into the present, make him an expert on bugs, and throw in liberal doses of CSI. Now you’ve got the basic outline.

In this book, the Bug Man–a.k.a Nick Polchak–is getting married. There are perhaps situations in the world that would be more difficult for most of us, but not for everyone’s favorite anti-social, blunt, sarcastic, Polish-American forensic entomologist (especially the wedding part–he just does not understand “human’s bizarre mating rituals”). In order not to give spoilers for the previous book, Ends of the Earth, I won’t tell you whom he marries.

Anyway, being Nick, he leaps off to go help a friend solve a cold case murder about five days before the wedding and well, everything goes downhill from there.

Published by Thomas Nelson, Nick of Time isn’t an overtly Christian book, but it is a clean one. No wading through sex, cursing, and gratuitous violence here. This isn’t to say it’s necessarily for the weak-stomached. Understand, the main character spends his days picking insect life off dead bodies and analyzing them to determine time, place, and in some cases, method, of death. He also keeps dead pigs in his backyard to study insect decomposition.

Nick of Time isn’t the strongest Bug Man novel (my favorites are probably First the Dead and Shoofly Pie), but despite its plot holes, it is quite funny. All Bug Man books are the type of books you laugh out while reading, and then attempt to hunt someone down to share the joke with. In short, if you’re a fan of Bug Man, read Nick of Time; you’ll enjoy another encounter with Nick. If you aren’t a fan of Nick yet, I’d recommend you start with Shoofly Pie, and work your way up. And don’t worry. By the time you get to Ends of the Earth, you will be a fan, and then you’ll want to read Nick of Time :).

By the way, if you want to read the first chapter, check out: http://www.timdowns.net/Text_Files/Nick_of_Time_Ch1.pdf

In accordance with Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255, I am disclosing that I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. My opinions are my own, and I am not required to write a positive review.

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8 responses »

  1. Sarah says:

    Wasn’t it one of these books you started reading to me while I was trying to do Greek extra credit last semester? I remember it being funny in a bizarre way, though, frankly, everything seemed kind of bizarre at that point.
    Also (random), I miss you!! I am studying for my Greek final and I have no one to race with me around the running track singing about suicidal bunnies to the tune of “Mad World.”

    • Yes :). That one was Ends of the Earth.

      It’s quite sad that we can’t race around the running track singing about suicidal bunnies. Every time I hear “Mad World” I think about you and singing about suicidal bunnies. Good times :).

  2. propjets says:

    Good gracious! Your suicidal bunnies song was sung to mad world?
    I must hear this, although I feel that it will shrivel my soul even more than the original song does…

  3. Sarah says:

    Ummm, I think I have forgotten it. Yes, indeed.

  4. Thanks for the review. It is not my kind of book, but I love the cover.

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