Yowser. I’m listening to an audio book I don’t like and I’m reading a book I find annoying. Naturally, I will not name titles, but I’m going to rant a bit.
The book is a debut novel. I’m not finished, so some opinions could change, but here is one that will not: it needs editing! Oh, the trees that are wasted because of the author’s redundancy! It’s a crime! This author should be forced to plant a tree–or at least a lettuce plant–for every book printed, and the editor should have to plant two trees for each copy. It feels like a first novel, as though the author is struggling to find words, say it right, get his/her point across. I feel bludgeoned with his/her points. Yes, the MC is at odds with his/her father–I get it already.
Or maybe s/he is simply trying to pad the story to reach a certain word count. Maybe it’s a NaNo novel. Note to author: those are meant to be edited before they’re published. Cut the crap.
Another opinion on this one that I doubt will change is…you know it…employing uber-drama in a desperate attempt to hold my attention. Ew ew ew and ew! Worst of all, the biggest uber-drama is the opening scene. The hook.
So far, it just barely connects with the rest of the story. It’s clear what the author wants to establish through this scene, but the approach is akin to draining Lake Baikal to fill a bathtub. You don’t need that much drama to give a character something to regret; you don’t need that much drama to set up a situation where family relations are strained; you don’t need that much drama to suggest something might be dangerous.
Yes, uber-drama happens in real life, but not as often as it happens in books, in my opinion. This uber-drama feels forced to me, too obvious about its purpose. I prefer subtle stories.
To be perfectly honest, I wonder if that scene wasn’t tacked on at the end. An afterthought. A boa added to the multi-strand pearl necklace, giant dangling earrings, diamond tiara, and ruby slippers. The icing on top of the icing on top of the icing on the cake. (How’s that for redundancy?)
The really sad part is, there’s a decent story in there, I’m pretty sure. And I know a mountain of work went into it.
The audio book is the final book in a very popular series, so I don’t mind ragging on it; the success of the series far outweighs anything I can say.
I hate most of the central characters. They are selfish to the nth degree. It’s their selfish actions that drive the story for the most part, so I have zero sympathy for their predicaments.
Even worse, their selfishness supposedly stems from love. Do you love anyone? If so, would you let go of your own wish or desire to protect the person you love? Hello…mothers? Would you sacrifice your own wishes to help or protect your kids?
These characters do not, and yet readers love them, believe they are good characters, sympathize with them, and care about them. What are you people thinking?
What would you call a kid who, out of curiosity and in the name of fun, knowingly and deliberately defies his/her parents, sneaks away, and does something s/he knows is dangerous and will cause his/her parents pain and ultimately force them to also do something dangerous?
Readers the world over, including teachers and parents, are calling this kid a hero. I call him/her a brat. I don’t like him/her. In fact, I hate him/her. I hope s/he dies before the story is over, but I’m betting s/he lives.
But hey, that’s just me. No author can please every reader.
And now I’m heading out to plant some green stuff to make up for any crap I’ve had published or happen to get published in the future. Most of us don’t aim to publish crap.