Friday, June 27, 2014

The Flight of the Silvers - Daniel Price

I mostly don't even want to discuss the plot of this book. We've all read enough dystopia to know where this is going. Group of unlikely young people comes together in the future/another world/our world but like slightly different, only this time they all have super powers and a group of scientists is either trying to study them or gave them those powers (and is now trying to study them...there was definitely an aura of lab rat) and they're all trying to get to safety. TO BE CONTINUED IN AT LEAST TWO MORE BOOKS PROBABLY.

And I'm totally down with generic dystopia. It's so EXCITING and GRITTY and there's adventures and stuff. But the writing has to be middling to good, ok? I can handle middling writing. I stopped reading Scott Westerfield because his plots became recycled and boring, not because his writing is mediocre (even though it is). But THIS. This is awful.

I'm mostly willing to allow certain quirks. Like, an author needs to have a voice, right? But sometimes I'm like LOL NO, that is wrong. Like, in Silvers, people are always chucking a hand. Which I think means gesturing, like when you throw a hand up in exasperation, and I get that I just used 'throw a hand' when I'm taking offense at 'chucking a hand,' but one of them is a Phrase That People Say, and one is Something No One Has Said Ever And Which Evokes A Literal Chucking Of Hands. Also, they do it a lot. Like, every ten pages or so, someone is chucking a hand. Like, Price is trying to be creative, but only so creative, you know?

Also, on this page in particular, a guy 'chucked a hand in hopeless dither.' People do things 'in dither' ALL THE TIME in this book, and theoretically it goes against my every grain to be like, YOU'RE DOING INVENTIVE WORD USAGE WRONG but...

Gotta side with standardized definition on this one.

ALSO. Everyone is always doing everything with 'adjective noun.' 'Mia hugged Zack with gushing relief.' 'Esis crossed her arms in a showy pout.' 'She studied Theo's cerebral tomogram in furrowed bother.' 'Amanda suddenly realized, with dizzying inertia, what a good thing it was to have Zack around.' FIRRRSTLY I'm not sure that's what inertia means, and secondly, adjectives fucking everywhere. A veritable SEA of adjectives. Adverbs. Modifiers coming out of your ass.

Is this review just going to be examples of places I think Price uses language incorrectly? PROBABLY. 'Amanda cracked the door three inches, studying her sister through an anxious leer.'

What proper leering looks like

I couldn't even really get behind the story. The characters are stereotypes having blandly indistinguishable conversations with each other and superpowersing all over the place.

It is perhaps needless to say that I won't read further in the series. It's the adjectives that got me, in the end.

Three caterpillars.


Chris bookarama said...

"Furrowed bother" invokes an image of a frustrated Winnie the Pooh for me. I think I'll pass.

Megs said...

It's possible the author is an alien trying to describe human facial expressions.

"You know, that face they do, where it's like, they're tense but sort of feeling OK about it. Constipated relief. Nailed it."

Reading Rambo said...

...anxious leer?

Susan Bybee said...

That's just [intensifer, adjective].

Lindsey said...

Oh no. The dither must be used sparingly and with great care...

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