Friday, September 2, 2011

Book Review: The Blood Bond by Bey Logan

The Blood Bond by Bey Logan
229 pages
B & E productions

Bey Logan is well known to kungfu movies nerds like me, we know his voice well. As the expert voice on the commentary tracks for Dragon Dynasty's line of DVDs. Believe me I have listened to everyone that has come into my hands. The man knows everything there is to know about kungfu movies, he has also worked as a screenwriter, producer and actor. So When I first heard about his novel I assumed it started life as a screenplay. The film was made, directed and starring cult movie star Michel Biehan(you know Corporal Hicks and Kyle Reese).

According to the authors forward Logan was happy with the film, but he enjoyed the story the way he wrote it before two other screenwriters got a hold of it. So he adapted his own screenplay into a novel.

It is the story of a woman Deva, who is a warrior given the job at birth to protect a Dali-lama like holy man named the Karmapata. When the holy leader is nearly killed on a diplomatic mission to Thailand on her watch they start a desperate search for anyone with a matching blood type. One by one the bizarre cult of zombie like warriors kill everyone in the country that provide the correct blood for a transfusion. Based on a vision Deva heads into the far north of Thailand and finds John Tremayne, who she later learns is a burnt out American former special ops solider who as luck would have it has the same type of blood needed for the transfusion. Together they have to battle strange cult warriors across the country, racing against the clock.

Logan is a screenwriter and it is no insult to say he speaks the language of the action film fluently. One of my favorite reads of last year was Chuck Hogan and Guillermo Del Toro’s Vampire Apocalypse novel The Fall, which also read like a movie. There is a pace and feeling with the quick cuts and no wasted words that filmmakers bring to novels. I really liked that about Blood Bond which felt in every way like a Hong Kong action that had to come in at 90 minutes exactly to have the most viewing possible in the day.

Blood Bond is a fun read, nothing super deep, but fans of Logan’s work and Asian action films will see it as a very clear movie in their heads. That is not to say that Logan did not give the novel some touches film cannot. The warrior Deva’s back story is nicely woven into action, and one brutal scene on page 74 to me painted a wonderful picture, and gave great depth to a side character in the narrative. Fans of Asian action film set in a contemporary setting will not want to miss this pot boiler novel. The bonus is before I got this book in the mail I had no idea Michael Biehn had directed and co-starred with Simon Yam in a movie...Got to see that.

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