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Posted February 5, 2013
Posted March 3, 2013
Antwan, Temp, Bishop, Niko and Chris are a group of…what else…knuckleheads. Each with a different reason for doing what they do, they find it easier to steal or to kill than to work for theirs.
With danger, violence, and deceit, this book set up as a story that should and could have easily blossomed into an entertaining tale. However, C.J. Hudson’s “Knuckleheadz” quickly transformed into a predictable and typical street tale that’s been told many times before. I found this story to be in need of two things: 1) developmental editing and 2) copy editing.
The story lacked balance. For instance, one character’s motivation for getting quick money was to pay for medication for his sick sister. Her health was mentioned often in relation to that character yet readers didn’t learn what that sickness was until well into the book. Over 100 pages in there was a mention of remission. Readers could only assume it was cancer as the term remission is often linked with cancer, but that’s not always the case. It was not until almost 200 pages in that readers learned that it was cancer and what kind of cancer to be exact. In doing so, it came off as almost an afterthought. As if the author knew his character’s reason for hustling would be a sick family member but gave no thought to what that illness would be and went with cancer. Any disease could have been thrown into the story with the way it was written. But when it came to sex, whether the sex involved the characters or their family members, readers were given details blow by blow (no pun intended), sex scene after sex scene. Lack of balance. Poor development. Readers also do not get a complete story as a way to make room for a second book.
As far as the copy editing, there was an absolute overuse of exclamation points and the word “then.” So much focus went into slang that it went terribly, terribly wrong. In addition to the slang giving me a headache, it resulted in errors. Many words ending with “ing” were changed to “in’.” That’s fine but someone forgot to tell the word forgetting as it was spelled forgetting’ throughout the entire book. Yo (as in a greeting or attention grabber), yo’ (slang for your) and you/your were interchangeable. When yo was often used as slang for your, the punctuation was missing and the “y” was capitalized, even in the middle of a sentence.
The logic behind creatively spelling the title with a ‘”z” to make knuckleheadz instead of knuckleheads yet spelling it correctly throughout the novel escapes me.
With some assistance there is potential within this story. As is, it’s not one I can recommend.
Reviewed by: Toni