Search This Blog

Sunday 12 January 2020

On the Run by Scott Stevens

'Said to be one of the best releases of 2018.' Always risky to make such a bold statement: it's a lot for a book to live up to.  In this case, well...

What we have here is a successful author, Dwight Cobb, who unwittingly finds himself on the run from a dangerous drug cartel, courtesy of his unfaithful wife. The plot, actually, is not at all bad. But what I read was a book that is still a WIP.

The story is told. 'Told' being the key word here. Told but not shown. Not one bit of showing at all. The dialogue is heavy and laboured, and anything more than two sentences is like a sermon. And the repeated use of the name of the character being spoken to is incredibly annoying. Out of two characters in a scene, it's obvious who's speaking and who's being addressed.

Grammar and punctuation need a complete overhaul. I have a suspicion that this might have been self-edited.

It's very hard to feel anything for any of the characters. None are particularly well portrayed, and I found it hard to care if the cartel caught up with Dwight or not. As for Rosa, the cartel boss, despite the effort to portray her as ruthless, heartless and quite the bitch, she comes  over no more frightening than a strict teacher who gives you a few too many detentions.  

For all that, I maintain the plot really does have legs because, despite my apathy towards Dwight, I was, strangely, compelled to find out what happened to him, good or bad. So, well done, Mr S, for making me care about the outcome, even if I didn't care about poor old Dwight. Keeping the reader engaged is half the battle. But I really would urge the author to get some developmental and technical editors on board to make this a really good book. And I'll forgive the shamelessly not-so-subtle but almost endearlingly cheeky self-promotion within it!

No comments:

Post a Comment