- Format: Kindle Edition
- File Size: 696 KB
- Print Length: 283 pages
- Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
- Language: English
- ASIN: B004PYDEY6
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Average Customer Review: 9 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #433,042 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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BlackThorn (Chronicles of the Dark Sword Book 1) Kindle Edition
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Sentences are just. Stopped midway. Through. This is. To say the very. Least very irritating..
And this is not just occasionally - it's all the way through both books so far. And I don't think I have ever seen quite so many comma's gathered together in one place - EVER!
Having said all that, I read a lot of fantasy and I really like the story. The characters are engaging and likeable and they develop well throughout the books, even if they are a little one dimensional. The bad guys are well thought out and truly nasty, as they should be. It's the age old (and winning) formula of ancient evil about to destroy the world and a farmboy-from-nowhere sent in to try to save everyone. Clichéd, but it seems to be the necessary formula for most fantasy novels, and it certainly works well here. The 15 year old hero seems to have the personality and maturity of a 30 year old, but it's not the first time I have seen that in fantasy books. At that age he should probably be somewhat more petulant and self centred, although this itself gets tiresome after a while. On reflection maybe it's actually a nice change.
The world the story is set in is very believable with a lovely rich history.
I think it's a great shame that the author has quite obviously put such a lot of time, effort and love into the story, only for the book to be totally ruined by the abysmal punctuation.
I'm also still cringing after a character 'drug' a chair across a room.. Don't rely solely on the software spell check for grammar!
The books need a week spent by someone re-editing them, and it's a huge shame this hasn't happened, as the story itself well and truly holds it's own with some of the bigger names in fantasy. The author tells a darn good yarn!
For the price it's well worth the read. If they fixed the punctuation I can definitely see this book selling for a normal ebook retail price rather than the bargain basement section which it's currently in. The story deserves better.
I gave it 4 stars as the story itself and the characters and their interaction are very good and I'm greatly enjoying it.
The growth of self publishing is a double edged sword; on the plus side, anybody can publish a book. On the negative side... well, anybody can publish a book.
This book doesn't have a bad story, though there's little in here that can be called original - it borrows heavily from a number of different authors. This isn't necessarily a bad thing - I read fantasy to be entertained, not to be amazed by originality. For me it's just escapism, and hence that's why I still find myself reading Conan stories a lot, not to mention all of the clones - Thongor, Brak, Elak, yadda yadda yadda, you get the idea. If you're seeking something groundbreaking, this book is not for you. From my point of view, it's not a problem.
What is a problem, however, is the horrendous butchering of the English language. Please, Mr. Kunkel, learn how to use a comma. There are numerous (and I mean this literally - it happens several times on most pages throughout the book) occasions were he punctuates sentences with a full stop where there should have been a comma. This makes the flow of reading very stop-start and isn't pleasant.
As an example:
"The walls were covered with panels of dark wood. From which brightly colored shields hung, running the length of the wall." Surely this should have had a comma in, rather than the full stop in the middle. It just jars.
"The fog's vaporous tendrils drifted slowly up the beach towards the encamped men. Writhing as it went growing thicker until it spread out along the entire shore." Horrible, simply horrible.
These are just two instances - it goes on and on. If you can read without the full stop/comma mix ups bothering you, fine, if not - it's going to become annoying.
Next, simple misunderstandings of vocabulary usage. Past/passed mixed up, sun set/sunset, were/where. "We'll come back once the sunrises and..." Sun rises, surely? This are all examples were a good proof reader could pay dividends, and would ahve improved things no end. The most hilarious instance of this dubious word substitution comes in the following example:
"There were stories of those who had had looked upon Vool's continence. In all the tales, those that did died a horrible death." Really? I actually laughed out loud when I saw this one. Again, a proof reader would likely have spotted this particular boo boo. Clearly, continence is an issue in this world, as with a paragraph or two several men were 'soiling themselves with terror'.
Last, but not least, there are swathes of areas in the book where very little happens, and seem to serve only to pad the book out. There is a journey undertaken by the protagonist with a trader and his men which though it does allow the hero to learn knife throwing, is filled with unecessary 'action'. There's a fight, but it has little relevance to the plot. The rest of the journey is naught but filler. If it doesn't move the plot forward somehow, hack it out. A good editor would know this and recommend it too, I have no doubt.
I've still not finshed this book. I'm determined to, but all of these issues are niggling me more and more with every page. I'm 3/4 of the way through now, and I'm reading a little at a time, here and there. I'll get there, but I don't think I'll be bothering with the sequels unless he sorts things out.
In conclusion - this isn't a bad book per se, just one that desperately needs both an editor and a proof reader. These simple additions could lift this book from sub-par to very readable, if not earth-shatteringly original.
I presume that this is at least in part a result of this being an eBook, but the bottom line is there is no excuse for such sloppiness. Had I been the author I would have refused to allow the books to be published in this way.
I would quite happily given this a 4 star review (well, perhaps a 3 1/2 star if halves were an option), but I found the editing errors to be too irritating in all three of the books.
Mr Kunkel/Amazon (or whoever is responsible for editing), please, please, please take the time and effort to get this right. Surely one should take enough pride in one's work to ensure that the book is published decently, whatever the format.
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