6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
not mediocre, yet not marvellous neither.,
This review is from: The frog and the scorpion (Paperback)
I was bought this book as a gift, so I read it. It is not the sort of literature that I usually go for, so I may not be as familiar with the genre as other reviewers appear to be, however, as a writer myself,with an open mind and an interest in the written word, I was prepared to be convinced by this book.
From my perspective, whilst not a bad first effort, this book is stylistically unsophisticated, and is in want of a good edit. Though it is a first book, and has some moments lightness and hilarity (the scene in the Mum's garden), my feeling is that some of the scenarios try too hard to fit in to the 'lock stock' genre. Maybe the author is better at writing comedy than gangster? In any case, those scenes which are full of posturing and machismo felt laboured and cliched to me, and given that I do not read 'gangster' books, the fact that I felt that I had seen it all before, should set alarm bells ringing in the ears of those who do like this stuff. In particular the depictions of women, masculinity and race made my wince with discomfort -much more than the depictions of violence, which were vivid enough without being emotive.
Overall, I would not dismiss this book as mediocre as there are many moments that I did enjoy reading, however, buyers should approach the purchase of this book with the expectation that you are buying a self-concious 'first effort', where normally books do not ask to be judged based on their author's experience of writing for publication.
I would be interested to see what direction the author goes in next.