Thursday, 29 March 2012

Didn’t Finish It… ‘A Game of Groans’ – George R.R. Washington (Thomas Dunne)

This post was actually meant to be a review of something completely different but this week just seems to laugh at all my plans to review certain books… What do you get instead then…? No review, just a few words on why I didn’t finish this book.



Just in case you were wondering (this being the second book that I’ve put down unfinished this month), the plan is still very much to actually… you know… finish books and review them here. Wouldn’t be much of a blog otherwise. These days (what with job hunting and so on) I think I’m a little more impatient with books than I used to be. I don’t have as much time to wait for a book to deliver so if it doesn’t do the job that it promised then that’s that I’m afraid. It’s not just that though. A book might be awfully written and have me giving up in disgust. It might simply be that I’ve picked the wrong book up at the wrong time and I’m not in the mood to press on with it. Or… it might be a book like ‘A Game of Groans’.
Go on, have some blurb…

A PARODY OF THE BELOVED FANTASY DOORSTOP… ER, SAGA

In the land of the Eight (or was it Six?) Kingdoms—where the seasons last as long as a series of bestselling Tolkien-esque novels—trouble is brewing. The mud is growing muddier, the onions are rotting, the Wall to the North (or is it the South?) is melting, and Lord Barker of Summerseve is getting worried. His wife is addicted to Godsweede, his King is too fat to fit into his armor, and the foreshadowing is out of control. All in all, not the position you want to be in when Summer is coming.

From this world of outdoor fornication with horse-people (and indoor fornication with blood relatives) comes an epic story of novella proportions. Amid plots and counterplots, power-hungry warriors and overworked ravens, poor reception and no wireless, the future of the Barkers, their BFFs, and their enemies dangles in the balance, as each strives to survive long enough to appear in at least two of the sequels.


If there are sequels to ‘A Game of Groans’ you won’t find me mentioning them here as this book simply wasn’t as funny as it desperately wanted to be. What I read actually wasn’t funny at all and that’s pretty much a deal breaker if I’m going to read a book that promises some laughs. The ‘jokes’ are forced onto the reader by a writer who is trying just a little bit too hard to be funny. Maybe things could have been different with a little bit of observational humour rather than fart jokes and lame sounding commentary on where George R.R. Martin got his ideas from. What I was left with though… It all just fell flat and I actually felt more in need of a laugh than I did before I picked the book up in the first place.

I’ll admit that I am a fan of GRRM’s books but that wouldn’t have stopped me sticking with ‘A Game of Groans’ if it had made me crack even the tiniest of smiles. None of that was forthcoming though so down the book went. I wouldn’t let this post put you off picking up ‘A Game of Groans’ and trying it for yourself; just because I didn’t find it funny doesn’t mean that you won’t. Ultimately though, this isn’t a book for me.

9 comments:

Stefan Fergus said...

I have never found a parody like this, of any fiction, funny. But, they sell a bajillion copies, so not surprising that it was bought.

Mad Hatter Review said...

I tried A Game of Groans as well. It lost me within a few pages. If you're a parody you better make me laugh right away and that just didn't happen.

Blitzspear said...

I think we need a good book burning. i couldn't even get through all the blurb it sounds horrendous. Good luck with the job hunting btw.

Elfy said...

I'll be staying away from this. The only one of these I've ever found mildly amusing was Harvard Lampoons Bored of the Rings, and that may have had something to do with the fact that I was 12 years old at the time.

Aoife said...

*ugh* I think I had a LotR-parody like this once and I skimmed through those of HP and some others. With all I had pretty much the same problem as you. Yeah, the author does know his source-material but all mixed with far to many infantile "jokes" that aren't funny.

James B said...

The only joke is at the reader's expense since they were daft enough to buy it.

Shane said...

I cringed at least 5 times just reading the blurb.

Review Critic said...

Found another one, this is pretty funny, although I have not read the one you reviewed. http://www.amazon.com/Game-Toilets-Thrones-Parody-ebook/dp/B007SPCJWC

Michael Clower said...

I'd like to give credit, starting off, to the author's sense of humor (obviously present, if often forced). I laughed at "overworked ravens".
That's the extent of any credit, which I felt was due.
I've only read the blurb and just the same as some other folks who've commented here, I feel no desire to read the book its self.
I'm recently through the HBO series up to current and as such, am impatiently awaiting those episodes which are to come. Desperate for more content, while I wait, I'd installed the latest released PC video game title and found it as disappointing as this blurb unwittingly promises "Game of Groans" to be.
I'll be continuing "A Story of Ice and Fire" and adhering to the assumption that Martin's books and HBO's series are the only relative material currently available, which might be worthwhile. I hope may-hap something changes my mind soon. My hunger for adventure is piqued by the world Martin has created and I'm anxious for quality expansion on that world and it's inhabitants.