When I had the opportunity to read an advanced review copy of the upcoming ChiZine Publications novel “Get Katja” by Simon Logan, I wasted little time in starting the book. This novel is the sequel to “Katja from the Punk Band” so I anticipated the same frantic level of action and hilarity as the first novel.
Now that Katja has escaped from the island, she is ready to come out of hiding on the mainland and her band has booked a gig as a kind of coming out party for them. Unfortunately, the poster’s that are hung around town to advertise the gig are also advertising to everyone that exactly where Katja is going to be and there are still a lot of people interested in finding her. It is sure to be one hell of a night.
While Katja may not be all that surprised that she is being hunted by a corrupt detective with an axe to grind, the appearance of the transvestite debt collectors is definitely unexpected. Things get even crazier with the arrival of an old friend and a demented surgeon and his reluctant yet sadistic nurse. The action is nonstop as the parties collide around Katja and the struggle commences as all involve are trying to get Katja.
“Katja from the Punk Band” was a story full of nonstop action and oddball characters and “Get Katja” is more of the same. From the very first pages of the novel, there is little time for the reader to stop and collect his thoughts as Logan keeps his foot on the gas pedal without letting up until the very end. Everything happens at breakneck speed and the twists and turns come just as fast. Very little is as it first seems and there is no comfort zone for the reader to settle into. Often bizarre and never boring, “Get Katja” is one of the most fun books that I have read in a while.
In spite of the nonstop action, there is a depth to “Get Katja” that is missing from most other books of this kind. The seemingly haphazard strangeness of the book is a cover for the glimpse at a counterculture that exists in the real world. This gives the reader a deeper experience than just an adventure story and adds to the intrigue of the story. Logan is able to interweave the adventure and excitement of the story with this to give the story an element of seriousness along with the obvious entertainment that makes it resonate. While other authors have tried this, it is not often that one has done so in such a way that the excitement and urgency is maintained alongside the extreme adventure. I found myself not only trying to untangle the twists of the story but also determining the meaning of the story as well. When all is said and done, “Get Katja” has every element that one can look for in a book of its ilk. I enjoyed “Katja from the Punk Band” but Logan takes the story even further in “Get Katja” and creates something even more enjoyable.
I would like to give a special thank you to ChiZine Publications and NetGalley for this advanced review copy. “Get Katja” is scheduled to be released by ChiZine Publications in March 2014.