Friday, September 28, 2012

The Quest for the Talisman - A Book Review

The Quest for the Talisman
Michael A. Faris

As stories go, I liked this one. A group of people come together to retrieve a valuable item for their king. As you might guess from the cover, Zeppelins were the main mode of air travel. The rest of Michael's world is an interesting mix of technical/mechanical and not, even all the way down the social ladder to what might be considered modern neanderthals. As the main team encounters each society or people/person in their search, the mystery grows. Just exactly what is this talisman and what does it do? Yes, it does something.

As to the author's skill in writing, it was very rough. Actual misspelled words were very few, but there were more in the latter chapters, telling me he spent more time worrying about the front half, than the book as a whole. The most annoying 'error', and it was consistent throughout the book, was every hyphen was an underscore. I have no idea how that one could have escaped notice, as it was frequently used.

Would I recommend this book? Sure, but only if you lock your inner editor firmly away behind many chains, hasps and deadbolts. Like I said, there are many issues with the writing that would drive an editor up a wall.

Though scene changes are duly marked, there were many that were single-liners at best and would have been better left out entirely or lumped together to make at least a page or three, so us readers can have a chance to change channels. Though the changes were sometimes quick and short, they were easy enough to keep track of if you paid close attention to who was who and where they were. As the story progresses they all mix and mingle, and find their own way to the end goal.

Also, though these were relatively few, story threads were started and led nowhere, or appeared from nowhere to make some tie-in more convenient.

There were also issues with the characters that annoyed me somewhat. People making decisions based on no foundation I could determine was one thing. Another was, military people doing things no person with military training would ever do.

But, if you can manage to overlook these things, do read the book. It's a touching story.


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Debra said...

Oh, those writing faux pas would discredit him in my eyes. No matter how wonderful a tale he may tell, he needs an editor.

William Kendall said...

I think my inner editor would have issues with it.