Author: Harry Hallman
Genre: Suspense / Thriller
My Copy: Review Copy via Author
Add to: Goodreads
Synopsis: When a word game turns deadly, how do you fight it?” Who do you go to for help? Martin must answer these questions before he becomes the next victim of an insidious plot. In a single day Martin’s simple life as a business executive is turned upside down, because of his fascination with word games. And he is not the only one in danger.
Short stories are difficult to review without going into extensive detail and revealing the plot.
Martin is doing great and has everything he could hope for. He’s a big fan of playing games and doesn’t think twice accepting an invite to play a game version similar to Scrabble with a stranger. When VN76 begins to play, Martin is smug and knows he can easily beat them. The next day he goes about his normal business until he begins having one of those days. You know the type, where one thing goes wrong and suddenly everything goes downhill. When his dog goes missing, he goes home only to realize there’s more to VN76’s word play and begins to frantically find out their identity before it is too late.
Overall, I liked Hallman’s Word. As for character development, Hallman does good job working within the confines of a short story. Martin is arrogant and at times it is difficult to feel any sympathy for him. I really liked his housekeeper, Huong! Her reply to his question about looking over the balcony for the dog was hilarious! As for the mysterious VN76, I wasn’t expecting who it was, but wish they’d been a little more developed to fully grasp why exactly they were doing what they were (although we’re given a reason, it was all a bit too brief). I thought I had an idea regarding their identity and I’m glad Hallman surprised me.
Word is well written, but in a few areas, we jump from one place to the next and I had to reread a few times to grasp what was going on. Just a quick note on the use of profanity for those who shy away from such use: Hallman does use it frequently. If you can overlook this, then by all means do pick up it.
I liked Harry Hallman’s Word. It is an intriguing that will leave you on the edge of your seat.
Purchase Link: Amazon
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Hallman a resident of Atlanta and was born and raised in the Kensington section of North Philadelphia. He served in the U.S. Air Force, including two tours in South Vietnam as a photographer. He is married to Duoc Hallman, and has two children, Bill and Nancy, and one grandchild, Ava.
Hallman is a serial entrepreneur who has created several marketing services companies and continues to work as a marketing consultant. In 1995, when the Internet was an infant, he formed a web development company and has been a practicing online media consultant ever since. In 1990 he assisted his son Bill Hallman, a then budding fashion designer, start his business. Bill Hallman operates several stores in Atlanta and designs fashions for both men and women.
Hallman’s father was Harry Hallman, Sr., a champion billiards player who also owned a poolroom called Circle Billiards, located at Allegheny Avenue and Lee Street in Philadelphia. The younger Hallman spent many hours after school at his father’s pool hall. These youthful experiences laid the groundwork for his novel Mercy Row, including the colorful language in the text.
“The combination of my digital marketing experience, my work with my son’s business and my own mania about playing word games on my iPad, allowed the idea for Word to pop into my head one day. Although I was working on my sequel to my Mercy Row novel, Mercy Row- Clann, the idea would not leave me alone until I fished this short story: WORD”
Mercy Row- Clann– Coming Late 2013