Book Review: And Then There Were Nuns

I know, I know, I said I was done with cozy mysteries but this one caught me with it’s title. It literally jumped off the shelf while I was at the library browsing on the last date night I had with the hubs. Yes, we are that geeky. But if you have a small child, you know, going to the library without said child, is exciting.

And Then There Were Nuns by Kylie Logan started off pretty good. Not great. Not ooh, this is so well written I can’t put it down, but good enough. This is apparently one of a series, and the “get a new reader caught up” portion was done ok. Not the best I’ve seen but no where near the worst. So I’m reading happily along, or happily enough anyway. And then…

All of a sudden, the head jumping starts. And these odd little extra thoughts, in parentheses in the main character’s thought stream. And I notice whenever something exciting is about to happen, she ends the chapter. Ok, lots of people do that. It gets you to turn the page, go to the next chapter. But you don’t get to see the action. Logan skips it entirely and you find out what happen when the main character is thinking about it or telling someone else what happened. Ugh. Shoot me.

And the mystery is solved with a big SURPRISE! Not surprised, not amused.

℘℘℘ – Almost 3 pages. I don’t know. It’s more than 2, the reasonably good stuff at the start gets it out of 2 page range, but…Fine, it’s readable.

Book Review: Mystery

I had the hardest time trying to decide if Mystery by John Hamilton should be a book review or a weekend workshop. The truth is, it barely qualifies as either. 26 pages long is an episode of Scooby Doo which is what I was doing while reading it, cuddling with my son while he watched Scooby Doo. I ordered this book thinking it might be a fun resource next year when I’m doing Nano to Publish with the kids at the coop.

It was an extremely generic look at writing the genre of mystery fiction. It included such helpful tidbits as:

-Setting is very important…it almost becomes one of the characters if well written. No information on how to write it well though.

-Get your ideas everywhere, the hard is turning an idea into a story. No information on how to turn an idea into a story.

-Write every day.

-Don’t plagiarize.

-Characters: hero, villain, secondary characters. Give them flaws.

-Write dialogue that isn’t obvious. If a character’s been shot don’t have him say “I’ve been shot.” Have him say something unexpected like, “Take care of my dog.”

-Have your hero solve his own problems.

-Rewrite your book a lot. No suggestion to find others to beta read, line edit, or anything of the such.

-You’ll probably be rejected if you try to find a publisher but don’t give up, you have talent.

Oy vey. This book was certainly aimed at a younger audience but when I imagine my teenage self reading this, I’m insulted. It’s like giving instructions to boil water in a cook book. I heat the water, you say, until it bubbles, damn I never knew that. I want in depth explanations on how to make a good mystery work, not platitudes to paper the inside of my hamster cage with.

℘℘ 2 pages – I guess. I finished it so I can’t really call it a one pager.