8/28/08

When You Can't Go On, Again

I have been plowing through so many books that I am startled when I find a book I do not intend to finish. After all, I have some extra leisure time, so how else will I use it?

Now, some books just must be postponed — such as Ahab's Wife, which Carole reviewed. No matter how absorbing a tale, the voluminous tome was too much for me in my compromised state this summer. Stephanie Plum was more my speed, and I soared through four of those novels without as much as a hiccup.

Then, while waiting for a book from the library, I chose an earlier novel by the same writer to see if I might like her work.

And I had to put it down because it reminded me of the worst parts of my own job.

In Blind Submission: a novel, Angel takes a new job at a book agent's office. In the first paragraph she ponders leaving the office before she even sits down at her (very overburdened) desk, but by the end of the prologue, she accepts the challenge.

As the book progressed, all I could think of was when my job made me feel that way. I couldn't separate myself from the narrator.

Now, don't get me wrong — I love what I do. It's just that some days I wonder if I'm coming back in the morning. You know those days. You've had them, too.

Frankly, the book is good. Ginsberg quickly paints an intriguing picture, and I harbor a few suspicions about Angel's boss. Don't even get me started on Angel's co-workers, and if Angel as an administrative assistant should be working as an editor and reader — is she being properly compensated?

The more I write about Blind Submission, the more inclined I am to hobble upstairs and pick it up again. If I'm this passionate about a book when I'm a few dozen pages into it, then it has hooked me.

Well, I won't decide just yet. If I miss Angel, I know where to find her.

2 comments:

Lynn said...

"Extreme Danger", by Shannon McKenna

I just hate to be disappointed by a book. Preparing for a minor medical procedure, I laid in a good supply of projects, books, and other things to keep me quiet and still, and to keep me from going bonkers from inactivity. "Extreme Danger" was one of the books. The back cover of the book made it sound like a book that would be just my cup of tea. It is about a young woman who has always been a "goody two-shoes" who decides to begin kicking over the traces by going skinny dipping for the first time, whereupon she is yanked out of the water by the main male character, or hero if you will. Now I love a good bodice ripper, a romance novel to sigh over, a good spy yarn, or a gripping mystery. This book promised to incorporate a few of those plot elements -- a romantic thriller. Oh boy! So I eagerly curled up with this book last night only to toss it down in disgust after only the first 52 pages.

Now anyone, including the editors of this blog, will tell you that "prudish" is definitely not the first adjective people would associate with me. I don't mind four-letter words. I've been know to utter a few of them myself from time to time. But this was just disgusting. I felt the language was simply used for the shock value. It got even worse when it led into, in my opinion, graphic descriptions about child pornography, prostitution, and on and on. My opinion. "Shannon McKenna, shame on you." You might have had a good story without all the filth in it for no reason but to shock. It is a pity because I think the actual plot was a good one. A total waste of my time and money. This is one author that is off my list from now on.

Chris said...

How disappointing. If readers know the difference between gratuitous language and effective graphic communication, wouldn't the writer?

I hope your next book was more rewarding!