Top positive review
A fresh and funny idea, well executed
on 13 February 2014
I bought this book because I had read some very funny, clever articles on the author's website, so I thought I'd give his novel a go. It didn't disappoint.
The idea of a government-run dating agency to bring love to the lonely masses in order to get more votes is simply brilliant. The characters were well-drawn and instantly recognisable without being overused stereotypes. I've seldom seen politics described so succinctly without being too caustic. I also enjoyed the celebrity murder plotlines as the satire here was beautiful. I didn't feel cheated out of any threads of the plot, as they were nicely worked through. This is a funny, skilfully put-together book which kept me engaged. The pacing was good, if a little too frenetic at times.
However, the editing was simply atrocious. Any book which has a glaringly awful mistake on the very first page (been instead of being - as in "the news was been taken") has no business being released on the general public! The author is a journalist so he should have known better - but if in fact he did use a professional editor, he/she needs to be either disbarred or publicly ridiculed! There were some outright mistakes in both text and plot and throughout the book the punctuation was abysmal, with missing commas and sentences which ran on so long, that plot points and painstakingly crafted one-liners - a bit heavy-handed in any case - were either lost, or just plain annoying.
With a professional edit, this book could have been really, really good - a candidate for 5 stars. The idea is there, as is the talent needed to execute it. Still, I couldn't relax into it, because editing disasters like this give self-publishing a bad name. However, if you don't care about that, you probably won't regret buying this book.