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Posted May 12, 2013
Do you know when you tried to love a book, watering it the way y
Do you know when you tried to love a book, watering it the way you might a tomato plant along fruit row, but for whatever reason it continues to disappoint you time and time again? Not taking the water and the sunlight and shrinking from your every touch, confined to shrivel up and die, and give you the finger as it leaves the universe. That’s what I thought of A LONG, LONG SLEEP. I wanted to like this book and going into it, like that pesky tomato plant, I had every intention of liking it, but something went horribly, horribly wrong.
This really felt like science fiction’s bastard cousin, you know the unmentionable one named Barry, that no one likes to bring up at cocktail parties or family reunions or Sunday get-togethers or other familial social events. He’s invaded your life, and every time he pops around your office cubicle, you want to shoot him in the face with a BB gun. This was my Barry, and he played out like some never-ending highlight reel.
The dialogue felt stilted and disjointed; exclamation points were passed out like jelly doughnuts at a sugar convention; I didn’t give a flying crap about any of the characters; I wanted to stass myself until I ended up comatose; the plot moved along, but I was trying really hard not to pay attention; the similes and metaphors felt trite and overused; the killer robot felt like some secondhand, one-dimensional hack; Sleeping Beauty had the longest nightmare of her life, as did I; and I wanted to race to the end, just so I could remove this book from my Kindle and pretend it never existed. But I felt like I was slogging through quicksand. Oh, and if we ever get to the point that we’re tossing around the word cell as a verb (a bastard stand-in for the word call), I may be forced to shoot myself with a BB gun.
On some level, I kept hoping it would get better, that somehow bastard Barry would redeem himself, and that I wouldn’t have to kick his ass. But it never did. And for that, I admit, I really am sorry. Because I absolutely love books and discovering new authors and being so caught up in a story that you end up reading past your curfew and flipping pages faster than an Olympic sprinter. But I didn’t love this one, not even a little bit, not even at all.
Author of Falling Immortality: Casey Holden, Private Investigator
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