4 Responses to Best. Kindle Description. Ever.

  1. Why won’t you read “The Lost Symbol” I’m going to just to see if he can live up to the hype of his past novels. By the way, as much as I love books and I am a voracious reader, I like the kindle. I didn’t think I would but it is a separate experience from books. They each have their own place for me.

  2. falconesse says:

    Oooh, a new commenter! Welcome to my little corner of the internet!

    I read The DaVinci Code when it first came out, thinking to myself, “Well, booksellers and publisher reps all over the country are raving. I’ll give it a try!” **

    And, y’know, at first it was kind of fun. It was a search for the Holy Grail, and I’m a sucker for that sort of story. It was a quick read and the puzzles were kind of neat.

    But on closer inspection, the writing made me grit my teeth. I have a thing about dialogue tags. The character’s actual words and the descriptions of what he/she is doing while speaking should convey how it’s said, and using the word “said” is perfectly fine. It’s something that fades into the background.

    Brown uses a new word for “said” on every line: Robert shouted, Sophie queried, Robert retorted, Sophie shot back (he really liked “shot back,” if I remember correctly.) It rips the reader right out of the story, and it’s one of those things where, once I see it, I can’t unsee it.

    There were other weaknesses in the writing. Telling instead of showing, cookie-cutter characters, a poorly-executed deus ex machina or two.

    It was one of those books where it was fun when I didn’t let myself think about it… but I can’t read a book without thinking about it, so it fell apart pretty quickly.

    Switching gears, I actually have a Sony eReader. In general, eReaders are pretty keen. There are kinks that can stand to be worked out with them still in the technical sense (I’m constantly at war with the battery on mine. 1500 page-turns? Lies. Sometimes I’m lucky to get 200 before having to recharge.) I’ll always prefer a physical, paper-and-ink book, but I don’t mind the eReader as much as I did at first.

    It would be really great if publishers made eBooks as easily accessible to smaller bookstores as they do to the chains. Right now, I don’t see very much of that. If you want to download an eBook, you have to go through one of the big guys, or direct from the publisher, or from the Sony store. Give the indies license to sell them (or make it easier for them to get set up to do so) and I’d feel a hell of a lot better about it.

    My issue with the Kindle stems from Amazon’s shenanigans in general. They’ve done a lot of things that are just Not Cool, so if I’m recommending an eReader, I’m going to go with the Sony one (admittedly, I haven’t tried any others, so there might be one out there I’d like even better than the Sony. I just haven’t met it yet.)

    **I did this with Left Behind before TDC and Eragon after, and hated both. I’ve grown very, very wary of books that become sensations like that.

  3. Claire says:

    I never read The DaVinci Code. After hearing a good friend’s description of it, that was enough for me. Likewise, I won’t be reading his newest adventure in zomg secret conspiracy that a bunch of people will think is fact even though a simple trip to the library would reveal it all as sensationalized fiction. *takes a breath* I admit, I do sometimes use phrases such as “she shouted” when I write. But I also don’t publish books.

    When it comes to ereaders, I’m really just an old fogey. I love the smell of books, the feel of the page. I love going to independent book stores and getting recommendations from the employees, or just spending some time browsing and reading back covers. I can’t really see myself ever owning or using a kindle or the sony ereaders.

  4. falconesse says:

    “I admit, I do sometimes use phrases such as “she shouted” when I write. But I also don’t publish books.

    I’ve seen your writing, and I can promise you, you’re not guilty of dialogue tag abuse. :) The occasional “she shouted” is fine. It’s when I start to suspect that the writer sat down with a thesaurus and replaced every. single. instance of “said” that makes me want to smite things. Because at that point, it turns into telling rather than showing, and it’s lazy writing.

    Also:

    “I love going to independent book stores and getting recommendations from the employees, or just spending some time browsing and reading back covers.”

    So much win.

Comments are closed.