Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Not so Much, on most counts.

You Suck, by Christopher Moore. This is the sequel to Moore's Bloodsucking Fiends, on which I previously blogged. This was simply more of the same. The plot wasn't as good; the characters didn't gain or grow much. I like the writing style: it's realistic and normal without being stupid and uneducated.

Phantoms, by Dean Koontz. I've never read anything by Koontz before, and, although I know he's written dozens of books and is pretty famous and widely read, I really wasn't impressed. The premise of the book is interesting, and I like the historical instances he uses as "support," but there are three things: 1. He so doesn't know how to use fragments without sounding dumb. It's hard to do. 2. Although he does a good job of moving the plot along through action, he doesn't give the reader much to go on: there's nothing to figure out because there's not much evidence to build on: you just have to wait for his revelation. 3. He tidied everything up too nicely at the end. In a mystery/ horror/ thriller/ whatever-this-is, you oughtn't to wrap everybody up in their little happily-ever-after packaging. It doesn't go with the rest of the book (or the rest of the genre), and it was poorly done-- (spoiler!) everyone recovers, gets married and lives harmoniously and happily somewhere else.

So Now You Know... a Compendium of Completely Useless Information, by Harry Bright and Harlan Brisco. Yeah, so, it was a dollar. I read these because it is my goal in life to win at Trivial Pursuit more than 43% of the time. I liked the little sketches. Versailles, by Kathryn Davis. I quit halfway through. One of the reasons I like historical fiction is because I did poorly in history, but, by reading fictionalized or embellished accounts, I am able to remember names, dates, battles, and countries that no textbook or test could pound into me. This, however, is a terrible book. It refers to people without mentioning their relationships or other biographical information, so not many of the characters make sense. It switches between first person, third person, and scenes from a play. All I know about the French Revolution is what I picked up in high school reading A Tale of Two Cities and I hoped this would clear up some things. It made them worse.

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