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I found a review for this title on Amazon that fit my reading experience to a T. I almost don’t want to write anything because I’ll feel like I’m “copying”. Ha. Could NOT FINISH THIS.
Anyway. This suffered from the the “Tell because I don’t know how to Show” syndrome. Quite possibly one of the worst cases I’ve seen in a long time. It might be just fine for a middleschooler but at over 400 pages I don’t see many in that age group going through the whole book. It drove me absolutely batty.
Secondly, the prose. While it wasn’t strictly purple, it definitely was of the Grape Kool-aid variety. Over descriptiveness abounded everywhere. It felt like I was reading a book report and the student was padding their report to get the prerequisite number of pages. But for all that, everything felt and seemed flat.
Thirdly, the “deep and hidden meanings” in just about every paragraph. Triplett tries TOO hard to bring out his “♪♪ Christian Message ♪in Disguise ♪♪” [sung to the Transformers tune]. I’m a Christian myself. I don’t have a problem with that. Stephen Lawhead preached Christianity through his Pendragon Cycle [Arthurian Legend] books and I ate it up. C.S. Lewis hits you over the head with it in his Space Trilogy.
But Triplett seems to feel the need to make it all very mysterious and “meaningful”. Kind of like if your 3 year old came up to you and said “Daddy, I made this picture. I drew you in it, RIGHT HERE!! [excited finger jabbing]. But you’re hidden so no one can see you!” It didn’t feel natural. The story didn’t seem to flow from the Belief but the Belief was forced into the story.
Finally, I won’t even bother with the plot. The above 3 things completely overwhelmed it so I don’t feel it is even necessary to discuss.
So I tried. I went up to 21%. But after my Crash and Burn with The Wizard by Wolfe, I realized I needed to gird up my reading loins and not allow myself to suffer through a bad book. Mediocrity and poor craftsmanship are hallmarks of a bad book to me.
Rating: 1 of 5 Stars
Author: Robert Triplett
The Great Darkening
Epic of Haven #1