Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Book Review

The Good GirlThe Good Girl by Mary Kubica
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book has been compared to "Gone Girl", and it has some parallels, such as the formatting, and the amazing twist at the end, which you'll never guess. Otherwise, I don't think "The Good Girl" is as well written, and could have benefited from some good editing. The story is told in the voices of Eve (Mia's mother), Colin (the kidnapper), and Gabe (the detective), and revolves around the kidnapping of Mia and what the search for her does to the family dynamics. The story bounces back and forth between "before" the kidnapping and "after", so each chapter is titled Eve before, or Gabe after, depending on what is to be told. At first this made the reading difficult because we learn in the first chapter that Mia is missing, then in the next chapter she's returned with no details given. Then she's missing again. By the time you're at the end the pieces of the puzzle are finally in place. Eve is a sympathetic but weak character, married to a cold, indifferent man who always favored Mia's older sister over her. The characters of Colin and Gabe were written with such similar styles, with each using the same expressions frequently, that there would have been no difference between them if we didn't know that one was a detective and the other a criminal. The novel did keep me turning pages, and the ending was stunning. An enjoyable read if you don't get bored by much of the repetition, especially between Colin and Mia.

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Saturday, March 26, 2016

Do Editors Edit Anymore?

Today there are so many ways to publish it can be confusing.               Although traditional publishing continues to be the standard that confirms your writing is considered good, more people are choosing self-publishing because they don't want to wait to see their work in print.  Does that mean their writing isn't as good?  Some would argue that this is exactly what it means.  Yet, as an avid reader, who enjoys novels, most of which have been traditionally published, I'm amazed at the grammatical errors, format problems, and general lack of editing that I see in these books.  It's not as if an editor failed to look at the manuscript.  The acknowledgments that the author makes usually profusely thank their editor, their critique group, their relatives who offered their "honest" opinion, and on and on.  So how did these simple things get missed?  And why is the author thanking people for a job they didn't do well?  We're certainly responsible for our own writing, and for turning in a manuscript as polished and professional as possible.  Once that's done we count on those we hire to catch the things our eyes missed and tighten our manuscript.  I hear that traditional publishers have become much more critical as to what they'll accept these days.  I wish their editors were critical as well.

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