Sunday, 9 December 2007

'The Charon Covenant' - Brenda Munday Gifford (PublishAmerica)


The lowly 'spell checker function' only does one thing but it does it really well. I don't really need to tell you do I? Yep, you guessed it! What it doesn't do though is pick up on words that sound the same but are spelt completely differently (and mean different things). At least that's what appears to have happened in 'The Charon Covenant'... I'm not going to go into too much detail here, suffice it to say that 'no' does not mean the same thing as 'know' and if someone dies then they have 'passed' away not 'past' away...
Now, I don't know what happened here but if the publisher doesn't make the effort to come up with a polished product then I'm not sure that I want to make the effort to read it. It's as simple as that (and I'm not even going to go into the way that 'scene changes' were not made clear at all and resulted in a lot of turning back the page). This was a large part of why I put the book down at about page 38. The story itself didn't seem to be moving very fast at all (meandering descriptions of things that didn't seem worth the time) and given that the book is only one hundred and seventy five pages long I thought this was a problem. Having said that though, I was interested enough to want to skip to the end and see if the heroine got her baby back (she did).
I can't tell you much about the story itself as I didn't get that far into it, there's a review on SQT's Book Blog if you fancy a look.
I'm not going to give this one a grade as I haven't finished it. The blurb sounded like a good idea, it's just a shame about the rest of it.

6 comments:

Tia Nevitt said...

I've taken some heat on my blog when I decided to stop covering pod and self-published books, and this is why. I don't think they'd want me covering their books anyway; I'd likely give a review just as harsh as this one.

I'm looking for authors who successfully broke into big publishing. If that makes me a pawn of the evil publishing biz, then so be it.

Thanks for a good example of a harsh review!

J.G. said...

I'm not at all surprised you thought the book was rubbish - it was published by Publish America, who have been proven to publish pretty much anything as long as the author can stump up the funds.

I've read several excerpts of self-published work on the internet and all of it was atrocious. Spelling errors abounded and the prose was stiff and awkward. In short, you can see why the authors opted to self-publish.

No doubt there are a few gems out there, but most self-published material is not worth the paper it's printed on.

Graeme Flory said...

The story itself wasn't great but it was the presentation that decided it for me. If the publisher wants to make money off a book then surely they'd make sure it was in the best condition it could be?
I try to give authors a fair go, no matter what route they go to get published, but I'm also starting to wonder whether I want to be reviewing pod/self published books...

kendall said...

Graeme, they're a vanity publisher; thus they make money off the author, not from selling books to actual readers. So, you shouldn't be surprised. ;-) You're not their target audience--the gullible authors they milk are.

Graeme Flory said...

I'm new to this side of the industry but that makes sense. If they've already made their money then why should they care?

SQT said...

Hmm, interesting. I didn't read the book or review it for my site but it's good to know that self published work tends to be on the less professional side (predictably). I did just agree to read/review another self published work so I'll see how that goes. If it turns out to be rubbish I won't accept any more.