Overall Opinions of The Lost Identity Casualties

Discuss the August 2016 Book of the Month, The Lost Identity Casualties by Kim Ekemar.

You can use this forum to discuss the sequels to this book.

View The Lost Identity Casualties on Bookshelves

View The Lost Identity Casualties on Amazon.
User avatar
Scott
Site Admin
Posts: 3142
Joined: 31 Jul 2006, 23:00
2018 Reading Goal: 52
2017 Reading Goal: 36
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 5
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 25
Favorite Author: Voltairine de Cleyre
Currently Reading: The Woman in the Window
Bookshelf Size: 228
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-scott.html
Reading Device: B00L89V1AA
Publishing Contest Votes: 960
fav_author_id: 2660
Signature Addition: testtesttest
Location: CT

Overall Opinions of The Lost Identity Casualties

Post by Scott » 01 Aug 2016, 13:32

This is a discussion topic for the the August 2016 Book of the Month, The Lost Identity Casualties by Kim Ekemar.


What is you overall opinion of the first book in The Callaghan Tetralogy? What do you like most about it? What do you like least? Will your recommend the book to other people? Why or why not? Please remember to add your actual rating using the the book's page on Bookshelves.

My Answer: I like this book very much. I like how the plot was intricate and suspenseful but simultaneously easy to follow. After reading this book, I purchased all three sequels. I'm excited to read them. What about you?


View The Lost Identity Casualties on Amazon | View The Lost Identity Casualties Bookshelves
"That virtue we appreciate is as much ours as another's. We see so much only as we possess." - Henry David Thoreau

"Non ignara mali miseris succurrere disco." Virgil, The Aeneid

User avatar
gali
Site Admin
Posts: 30797
Joined: 22 Oct 2013, 07:12
2018 Reading Goal: 100
2017 Reading Goal: 100
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 69
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 105
Favorite Author: Agatha Christie
Currently Reading: 14
Bookshelf Size: 1817
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-gali.html
Reading Device: B00I15SB16
fav_author_id: 2484
Location: Lost in a good book

Post by gali » 01 Aug 2016, 15:15

I also liked the book overall and found it intriguing enough. The plot was engaging and easy to follow and I had no trouble following the many characters. I especially liked the present tense scenes. The pace of the book was good overall, but there were a few places where the momentum dragged a bit (in the flashbacks scenes especially). I also felt that the backstories of the secondary characters were too detailed and could be tighten up. They weren't really necessary for the advancement of the plot.

The author did a good job of fleshing out the main character, but I have to admit that I didn't like Matthias despite his misfortune. I understood his need for revenge, but didn't like the way he dealt with his father and his ex. The punishment of the father was way out of proportion, and he shouldn't have punished his ex. Divorcing her was enough. Knowing her history, I would have expected him to be more understanding. Speaking of his ex, I have to say that I found it a bit unbelievable that she left his fingers behind when taking him to the clinic.

Saying that I enjoyed the story overall, though some scenes left me wincing. I liked the way the author weaved together all the subplots and connected all the dots.
In the case of good books, the point is not to see how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you." (Mortimer J. Adler)

User avatar
braver
Posts: 124
Joined: 30 Jun 2016, 08:57
Currently Reading: Playing Big
Bookshelf Size: 69
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-braver.html
Latest Review: "Storm of Arranon" by R E Sheahan
Reading Device: B00JG8GOWU

Post by braver » 01 Aug 2016, 20:09

I actually did not enjoy this book very much. I felt like Matthias was completely unlikeable and had no sympathy for him. He came across as immature and completely lacking in self-awareness. The "everyone who ever wronged me must be punished" just felt overly simplified and childish. My main complaint, though, was that everything wrapped up far too neatly. He hatches this convoluted revenge scheme dealing with incredibly dangerous players, but nothing goes wrong for him? Really?

User avatar
gali
Site Admin
Posts: 30797
Joined: 22 Oct 2013, 07:12
2018 Reading Goal: 100
2017 Reading Goal: 100
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 69
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 105
Favorite Author: Agatha Christie
Currently Reading: 14
Bookshelf Size: 1817
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-gali.html
Reading Device: B00I15SB16
fav_author_id: 2484
Location: Lost in a good book

Post by gali » 01 Aug 2016, 23:03

braver wrote:I actually did not enjoy this book very much. I felt like Matthias was completely unlikeable and had no sympathy for him. He came across as immature and completely lacking in self-awareness. The "everyone who ever wronged me must be punished" just felt overly simplified and childish. My main complaint, though, was that everything wrapped up far too neatly. He hatches this convoluted revenge scheme dealing with incredibly dangerous players, but nothing goes wrong for him? Really?
I felt the same about Matthias. Some of his acts (especially regarding the ex) were due to a hurt ego. They did feel simplified.

Also I found the changes he went through (from naivety to slyness) was a bit unbelievable.
In the case of good books, the point is not to see how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you." (Mortimer J. Adler)

CrescentMoon
Posts: 957
Joined: 08 May 2014, 22:50
Currently Reading: Apollo's Raven
Bookshelf Size: 69
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-crescentmoon.html
Latest Review: "Letorian Descendants- Casey Blane Series (Book 1)" by Jodi Ann Fahey

Post by CrescentMoon » 03 Aug 2016, 14:24

gali wrote:I also felt that the backstories of the secondary characters were too detailed and could be tighten up. They weren't really necessary for the advancement of the plot.
I completely agree with this. I felt like the book could have been shorter and better if those scenes were cut out a little bit. The backstories didn't really enhance the book for me in any way.

I really did like this book overall. I usually am a fan of revenge stories. I love the "Count of Monte Cristo" and the abc show Revenge was one of my favorite TV shows when it was on. I was really excited to read this book especially because the premise was so intriguing. I am looking forward to reading the sequels.

User avatar
gali
Site Admin
Posts: 30797
Joined: 22 Oct 2013, 07:12
2018 Reading Goal: 100
2017 Reading Goal: 100
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 69
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 105
Favorite Author: Agatha Christie
Currently Reading: 14
Bookshelf Size: 1817
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-gali.html
Reading Device: B00I15SB16
fav_author_id: 2484
Location: Lost in a good book

Post by gali » 03 Aug 2016, 14:27

CrescentMoon wrote:
gali wrote:I also felt that the backstories of the secondary characters were too detailed and could be tighten up. They weren't really necessary for the advancement of the plot.
I completely agree with this. I felt like the book could have been shorter and better if those scenes were cut out a little bit. The backstories didn't really enhance the book for me in any way.

I really did like this book overall. I usually am a fan of revenge stories. I love the "Count of Monte Cristo" and the abc show Revenge was one of my favorite TV shows when it was on. I was really excited to read this book especially because the premise was so intriguing. I am looking forward to reading the sequels.
I also love the "Count of Monte Cristo" and found it well executed.
In the case of good books, the point is not to see how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you." (Mortimer J. Adler)

User avatar
kimmyschemy06
Posts: 2238
Joined: 20 Oct 2015, 20:49
2018 Reading Goal: 50
2017 Reading Goal: 50
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 72
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 136
Currently Reading:
Bookshelf Size: 481
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-kimmyschemy06.html
Latest Review: Squelched by Terry Beard

Post by kimmyschemy06 » 03 Aug 2016, 23:09

I love it! It felt like reading Sidney Sheldon. However, I think Matthias went overboard when it came to his father and his ex. Even if he cared so little about his father, I think he should not have done what he did to him. For the ex, I felt sympathy. I think she deserved more.. leniency?/ understanding? Overall I like the book and I enjoyed it a lot.

User avatar
stoppoppingtheP
Previous Member of the Month
Posts: 885
Joined: 14 May 2014, 09:59
2018 Reading Goal: 100
2017 Reading Goal: 50
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 22
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 30
Favorite Author: Adriana Trigiani
Favorite Book: The Hand of Fatima
Currently Reading: High Low In-Between
Bookshelf Size: 161
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-stoppoppingthep.html
Latest Review: The Callaghan Endgame Trilogy by Kim Ekemar
fav_author_id: 8071
Location: here

Post by stoppoppingtheP » 04 Aug 2016, 14:15

I don't usually read much horror and crime stories but I enjoyed this one a lot. At the same time, even though many of the characters in the story were well developed, and I appreciate their role in making the story more interesting, I didn't actually like them. I don't think I can point out any one whom I would like to meet in real life.

“there have been so many times
i have seen a man wanting to weep
but
instead
beat his heart until it was unconscious.

-masculine”


― Nayyirah Waheed

User avatar
ALynnPowers
Special Discussion Leader
Posts: 8447
Joined: 21 Aug 2014, 07:14
2017 Reading Goal: 125
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 3
Bookshelf Size: 341
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-alynnpowers.html
Latest Review: "Jake and the man-eating Picnic Basket" by Peter Preston
Reading Device: B0051QVF7A
Publishing Contest Votes: 13

Post by ALynnPowers » 05 Aug 2016, 10:17

(I'm not reading any of the comments in this thread because I haven't read the book and I don't want anything to be spoiled for me!)

BUT! I just wanted to remind everyone that there is an interview with Kim Ekemar in the Author Interview forums! Check it out!
http://forums.onlinebookclub.org/viewto ... 80&t=36773

j jagelovicz
Posts: 12
Joined: 05 Aug 2016, 19:53
Favorite Book: <a href="http://forums.onlinebookclub.org/shelve ... 3700">Gone With the Wind</a>
Currently Reading: Crime and Punishment
Bookshelf Size: 117
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-j-jagelovicz.html

Post by j jagelovicz » 06 Aug 2016, 18:47

I started reading The Lost Identity Casualties by Kim Ekemar and I was not exactly impressed. I've never read any other books by this author, nor have I hear of this author until I joined this book group so I don't have anything to compare this work to.

Now, to be 100% honest, I intensely dislike this book. It's not just the genre, or the plot, or the characters, either. It's the book in its entirety that I can't stand. I'm thoroughly disappointed in this particular piece of literature. I love reading crime thrillers, believe me, but this book (to me!) is poorly written, poorly edited, and has no real conviction or stance from what I've read. The first 5 pages of this story turned me off completely from even wanting to finish the book. However, I continued reading, thinking maybe, just maybe, I needed to give it some time to get more interesting or develop a better story line. It didn't happen. I got to page 50 and I cannot come up with a legitimate reason for me to continue to read it, even just to say that I finished it. The characters are one dimensional. They all have the same persona, e.g. they're all liars, cheats, scumbags, criminals, etc. There is not a single character that I can relate to or admire or even try to convince myself might be redeemable. Now, in an attempt to let you all know that I'm not some pessimistic narcissist since I am new to this group, I genuinely enjoy reading. On average, I try to read 10 books a month, at minimum, so long as my busy life permits. I have never in my life NOT been able to finish a book. Even if I didn't particularly like the plot or the characters or the genre, I was still able to finish the book and get a tiny bit of enjoyment out of it somewhere. I cannot do that with this particular book. I even committed my number one crime with books and skipped ahead sections to see if the story improved or the characters improved. I do not feel that they did.

One of the things that jumped out at me was that the dialect does not fit the time period and, in addition, Matthias' manner of speaking changes from paragraph to paragraph. This book is taking place in the 2000's and, frequently, I noticed the language and manner of speaking did not fit that time period but then the next paragraph would be written as if an egomaniacal teenager were speaking instead of an adult. For example, on page 5: "I use these moments to try to grasp what happened to me, who I am and –more than anything –what is to become of me." Maybe it has to do with where I’m from, but I have never heard anyone say "What is to become of me?" except for in plays and movies that are set in or before the early 1900's. People just don't naturally speak that way anymore. Then in another paragraph on page 6 Matthias says: "So, in conclusion I have plenty of money and a beautiful wife, and apparently I lead a successful business life in London. Then what am I doing wrapped up in bandages in a hospital bed in Switzerland?" The manner of speaking for Matthias has completely changed, and it flip flops continuously like this throughout the book (or at least what I was able to read of it!)

Also, the point of view from which the book is written changes sporadically. Now, please correct me if I am behind the times, but I was taught that when writing a story you need to pick a point of view from which to tell the story and stick with it. For instance, if you start out writing a story from a narrative or third person point of view, you need to follow that point of view throughout. If you are writing the story from a first person point of view, you need to stick with it throughout and not jump to a narrative point of view somewhere else in the book and then back to first person. It makes for complicated reading. An example of where I noticed this is on page 22: “Around three o’clock on this cold November day Matthias was surprised by a call from his father’s mobile.” If it had been written as “I was surprised to receive a call from my father’s mobile on this cold November day because…” it would have followed the first person narrative that the story began with. But by saying “Matthias was surprised by a call” the author switched the point of view to a third person narrative which changes the whole dynamic of the writing. I can’t say for certain that it does this throughout the book since I don’t have the will power to finish it, but just this one occurrence disrupts the flow of the book.

My next complaint is the characters. When I read a book, I find that I enjoy the story more if there is at least one character that I can connect to or admire on some level. That character is more often than not the main character in the book. I cannot relate to Matthias on any level. I can’t relate to any of the characters that I’ve been introduced to thus far, and that makes the book unenjoyable. They seem to all be criminals, of some degree, with greedy, self-righteous, narcissistic personalities. There are no redeeming qualities to make them feel relatable to me such as selflessness, or caring, or even loving. They come off as one dimensional. There are no complexities to their human nature and human beings are complex to the very core.
Lastly, I don’t understand the plot other than it’s supposed to be a crime thriller about one man’s revenge on the people who wronged him. I get it. However, there are several different books with this same plot line that are infinitely better written, with the best being The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas. The story flows smoothly throughout the entire book, the dialect is in congruence with the time period in which the story takes place, the exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, and resolution of the story are all interconnected and flow smoothly, and the morals and values you can extract from the story are admirable. The only thing I think I would take away from The Lost Identity Casualties if I were to finish it would be to exact revenge on those who have lied to you or wronged you and save yourself above all others and I’m not encouraged or entralled by that.

User avatar
braver
Posts: 124
Joined: 30 Jun 2016, 08:57
Currently Reading: Playing Big
Bookshelf Size: 69
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-braver.html
Latest Review: "Storm of Arranon" by R E Sheahan
Reading Device: B00JG8GOWU

Post by braver » 06 Aug 2016, 21:08

j jagelovicz wrote:It's the book in its entirety that I can't stand.
Yeah ... and I read the whole thing - it didn't change.

j jagelovicz
Posts: 12
Joined: 05 Aug 2016, 19:53
Favorite Book: <a href="http://forums.onlinebookclub.org/shelve ... 3700">Gone With the Wind</a>
Currently Reading: Crime and Punishment
Bookshelf Size: 117
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-j-jagelovicz.html

Post by j jagelovicz » 06 Aug 2016, 21:29

braver wrote: Yeah ... and I read the whole thing - it didn't change.
I'm glad I'm not the only one that didn't like it. I don't feel so singled out now.

And I apologize to everyone that I accidentally posted my review twice in the same post!!! When I proof read it there was only one copy! I must have hit a few wrong buttons somewhere between proof reading and hitting submit. So sorry!!

User avatar
gali
Site Admin
Posts: 30797
Joined: 22 Oct 2013, 07:12
2018 Reading Goal: 100
2017 Reading Goal: 100
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 69
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 105
Favorite Author: Agatha Christie
Currently Reading: 14
Bookshelf Size: 1817
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-gali.html
Reading Device: B00I15SB16
fav_author_id: 2484
Location: Lost in a good book

Post by gali » 06 Aug 2016, 22:50

j jagelovicz wrote:
braver wrote: Yeah ... and I read the whole thing - it didn't change.
I'm glad I'm not the only one that didn't like it. I don't feel so singled out now.

And I apologize to everyone that I accidentally posted my review twice in the same post!!! When I proof read it there was only one copy! I must have hit a few wrong buttons somewhere between proof reading and hitting submit. So sorry!!
I deleted the duplicated post for you.

I agree with you regarding the characters. I also couldn't relate to any of them (except maybe the ex) and found them lacking.
In the case of good books, the point is not to see how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you." (Mortimer J. Adler)

j jagelovicz
Posts: 12
Joined: 05 Aug 2016, 19:53
Favorite Book: <a href="http://forums.onlinebookclub.org/shelve ... 3700">Gone With the Wind</a>
Currently Reading: Crime and Punishment
Bookshelf Size: 117
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-j-jagelovicz.html

Post by j jagelovicz » 06 Aug 2016, 22:57

gali wrote:
I deleted the duplicated post for you.

I agree with you regarding the characters. I also couldn't relate to any of them (except maybe the ex) and found them lacking.
Oh, thank you!

User avatar
saikak
Posts: 8
Joined: 08 Aug 2016, 13:43
Currently Reading: Forever Twelve
Bookshelf Size: 4
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-saikak.html

Post by saikak » 08 Aug 2016, 15:28

The characters can be kind of stiff at times, and it's a tad bit black-and-white, but thrillers and mysteries are my forte, so I'd say I found this book thoroughly enjoyable.

Post Reply

Return to “"The Lost Identity Casualties" by Kim Ekemar”