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Evil Geek Book Report – Rocket Raccoon & Groot Steal The Galaxy!

Riding the high of the Guardians Of The Galaxy movie, I wanted more. While waiting 2 months for Amazon to fulfill their backorders of the Abnett & Lanning Complete Collection of Guardians, I turned my attention to a novel.

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Dan Abnett wrote, “Rocket Raccoon & Groot Steal The Galaxy!” Marvel’s first original prose novel which was released a few weeks ahead of the movie. At the time when I bought it, I couldn’t find too many reviews on it, so I figured what did I have to lose?

The first thing you’ll notice is the size of the book, I’m not sure if that’s Marvel’s angle for all of their prose material but it’s a weird shape. It’s a hardcover but smaller than the size of a regular hardcover book. Yet it’s also bigger and wider than a softcover. It’s very oddly proportioned.

As for the story, well it’s a lot of fun. Our friends Rocket Raccoon and Groot get caught up in a skirmish with the Badoon that breaks out in a bar. It’s all based around Recorder 127, a cyborg whose sole purpose is to travel the cosmos and record what it sees. It’s wanted by the mega conglomerate Timely Corporation. Something in its data banks is all that stands in their way of completing Project 616. Anyone else who gets their hands on it will be privy to a lot of sensitive and powerful information.

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Recorder 127 of course ends up in the possession of Groot & Rocket and what follows is a tour through the vast recesses of the cosmic side of the Marvel Universe. The Kree, Shi’ar, Nova Corps all make appearances as well as many other easter eggs for fans of Marvel Cosmic.  However, because of this I don’t think people who have only seen the movie will enjoy the book. It’s a standalone story, but it’s deeply connected to the Marvel comics.

Basically if you’ve ever wanted a really great and fun Han Solo and Chewbacca heist adventure this is for you (actually, I’m sure that exists but my knowledge of the Star Wars Extended Universe is limited at best). In my opinion this is exactly how a Rocket & Groot team up story should be. Even the Recorder bears a strong resemblance to C-3PO in actions, look and sometimes tone. Thankfully he’s far less annoying and a little more fun. In fact, so much of this book reminds me of Star Wars that even the author constantly reminds you by peppering in references to the movie series.

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The book itself is narrated by Recorder 127 using references attuned to humans culture from the last century or too. While this is a fun gimmick, in my eyes it gets old pretty fast. The amount of times alone Rocket is described as having “disconcertingly human hands” is enough to drive you crazy. I’ve seen the humor compared to Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy, but I’ve never read those books so I can’t really say.

It’s an enjoyable book though and at least it’s Dan Abnett (one of the architects of the modern incarnation of Guardians Of The Galaxy). You can trust his characterizations of Rocket & Groot, which of course are dead on. Oh and did I mention Gamora? She’s in here too. Problems arise though when the focus is shifted from these main characters which some chapters do. I just never ended up caring about any of the ancillary player. The book also ends up being just too damn long for the story. It clocks in around 350 some odd pages which seemed about 100 too many and portions grow repetitive. Small gripes aside if you’re looking for another avenue to enjoy some more Rocket & Groot you really can’t go wrong with this book.

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About Biff Tannen

Film Noir, Pulp, Comic Books and Hitchcock.

Posted on August 29, 2014, in Books, Evil Geek Book Report, Reviews and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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