Thursday, December 22, 2011

Happy Holidays!

Happy Channukah!

Happy Solstice!

Happy Yule!

Happy Christmas!

Happy Kwanza!

Happy! Happy! Happy! New Year!

May all your goals and dreams come true.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Maintaining The Momentum

My son recommended a fantasy trilogy to me. With some misgivings as I haven't had a lot of luck finding enjoyable books in the fantasy section of the bookstore, I bought the boxed set.

The first book was great. I stayed up all night reading it until I finished it. I was all set to come on here and rave about the great new author that I found, then I read the second book. And it didn't hold my interest the way the first one did; I kept putting it down for awhile and then going back to it. Then I started reading the third book; I'm halfway through and I haven't picked it up in several days.

Being the analytical person that I am, I analyzed my experience.

The reason I had trouble sitting and reading the second book was because one plotline was too intense. The main character of that plotline was in mortal danger with no hope of rescue or getting himself out of the situation. The one who was going to rescue him was mucking around totally oblivious to the danger his friend is in. So the story flipped back and forth between him in mortal danger and his friend skipping around having a jolly good time. I felt like shouting "Would someone in this story please go tell him to rescue his friend!" He finally does, but jeez Louise until he does the tension was more than I could stand.

Tension in a story is good. It keeps the reader reading the book, but too much tension and they will put the book down. But how much tension is too much tension is going to vary with the reader. For me, it is too much when there is no hope or hint of rescue.

The bad guy was defeated in the second book. So in the third book, the major players in that conflict are heading off in different directions. There are seven plotlines in the book and I have no idea what the overall story is. It looks to me like they are unrelated. I have no idea where the story is going or how it all fits together.

But what made me set the book down the last time is that one of the characters that I really sympathize with is going to die. It's a character that really doesn't deserve to die. The injustice of that on top of not knowing where the story is going is what made me set the book down. I could handle an innocent dieing if I could see that it made sense in the big picture of the story, but since I can't see the big picture it doesn't make sense for her to die.

I don't know if I'll finish reading the book. And I don't know if I'll buy another one of this author's books. I'll probably borrow it from the library.

If you're wondering, it's Brent Weeks' Night Angel Trilogy.