With a new influx of gym magazines, I've put off the "Continue or Bail" decision on my current gym book a little longer. It's James Lee Burke's The Lost Get-Back boogie (my mother likes his writing). Although the atmosphere is enjoyable, the pace is sometimes painfully slow and the main character is really frustrating. He's likeable enough, but he drinks polluting quantities of alcohol fairly often, and when you've got someone who tends to do stupid things when he's drunk, this tends to grate. Also, the author is using terms like "buttocks" and "urinate" which seem prissy, even if this is set in the 60s (and I'm only guessing-- the era has never been explicitly stated).
I joined the Amazine VINES program, where you can get up to two products at a time, and have to review 3/4 of what you receive. I have two novels to read, and discovered last night that they're both in microfont that I cannot (!) read in bed (the lighting is somewhat dim, because HalfshellHusband goes to bed earlier than I do. I'm out on the couch for awhile most nights, planning to write fanfic and half the time nodding off mid-sentence instead).
The cover of the one I just began is marked up with "Advance copy! Unfinished proofs!" Although the story's atmosphere is good, I hope the Prologue will get a little more work before final publication. Much of it reads like the problems I covered in that "On Writing" post awhile back, regarding the importance of proper punctuation and avoiding overloaded sentences. Seriously, I keep breaking off and re-reading sentences to reparse them, either because the subject has shifted or because the sentence has returned to the subject without warning after a major detour into secondary detail.
Transport me with your writing-- don't make me work to understand you! You can challenge me with your ideas, your characterization, your themes, but for the love of god don't hurt me with your convoluted language!