Review: Half to Death by Robin Alexander

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Review: Half to Death by Robin Alexander

Postby deej » 16 Jan 2012, 03:15

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Half to Death
Author: Robin Alexander
Intagalio
Overall: 2stars
Plot: 2+stars
Characterization: 2stars
Editing: 1star

Blurb
Sloan Hawkins cheated death when she slipped from its icy grip. It wasn’t until then she realized that she’d only lived half a life in more ways than one. Sloan now accepts that to truly live life to its fullest she must bring down the walls she had built to protect herself. She is ready to let go and love, but finds herself behind a new wall not of her own making.

Corrine Verner (Jade) has also lived her life behind an emotional fortress, but as she gets to know Sloan Hawkins Jade begins to hope that she might be different from the others. In her wildest dreams she never could have imagined just how different…


I hate when a blurb misses the whole point of the story. Sloan Hawkins goes away for a winter weekend with friends and falls thru a half frozen pond while out walking. When she's finally pulled out twenty minutes later she has no pulse, is not breathing and has turned blue, fortunately EMS is there and they revive her. That's where the real story begins. She didn't see the white light, or hear departed loved ones, instead she can read your mind with the simple touch of a hand.

This creates all sorts of problems with friends and strangers alike. It almost destroys her first real relationship with a woman she loves.

For me as a reader, this book fell far short of it's potential, but has remained with me in detail. It needed better editing to clear up the inconsistencies and confusion at times. It was an afternoon of reading and for that I gave it an extra half star.
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Re: Review: Half to Death by Robin Alexander

Postby FranW » 16 Jan 2012, 05:57

Er, isn't this author the owner-editor of Intaglio?
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Re: Review: Half to Death by Robin Alexander

Postby deej » 16 Jan 2012, 06:35

Yup.
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Re: Review: Half to Death by Robin Alexander

Postby FranW » 16 Jan 2012, 06:38

Yikes. That speaks volumes about the press.
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Re: Review: Half to Death by Robin Alexander

Postby Baker » 16 Jan 2012, 06:39

I think that is a 'yes'. No idea, of course, if that is in any way connected to the amount of work an editor was or was not allowed to do on the text.


Deej wrote:It was an afternoon of reading and for that I gave it an extra half star.

lol Okay, you probably didn't mean it this way, but I read that as you giving it half a star because it only occupied you for a short time.


Sloan Hawkins cheated death when she slipped from its icy grip.

This might be me, but I had an attack of Reading Incomprehension when I read this first sentence of the blurb. It's that "its". It must refer to death, but there are so many ways to die that this was a complete nothing in terms of informing potential readers what happened. Even if you're talking "icy death", there's hardly one way people could die in the cold. Avalanche? Blizzard? Slipped on ice while crossing the mall carpark and smashed her head on concrete post? Accidentally locked in the freezer at a meat packing plant? Abandoned in a lonely igloo by her ghostly and unfailthful inuit lover? If you're trying to hook people to part with their money, you really need to hit them with intriguing concrete details, not waffly crap. Because otherwise you give them the impression the way you wrote the book is full of waffly crap.
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Re: Review: Half to Death by Robin Alexander

Postby FranW » 16 Jan 2012, 06:49

I agree that it is possible a press's owner is also the acquiring editor and blindly "acquires" her own work for her press regardless of quality; it's equally possible the press's owner would eschew the editing process that the press's other authors are required to undergo. That would speak volumes about the stupidity and ego of the press's owner. And, if true, it's a real danger for every other author with this press. In the world of lesfic, many readers judge a book not just by its cover but by the name of the press that published it, and that many readers will buy/not buy a press's books wholesale based on previous reads from that press.

Alternatively, we can assume that this book was edited to the best of this press's capability. Which suggests that either the original text was utter gibberish and the editor worked miracles to produce something marginally readable, or the editing at this press is pretty much nonexistent under any circumstances.

No matter which explanation is true, the take home message for me would be to stay far far away from this press.
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Re: Review: Half to Death by Robin Alexander

Postby deej » 16 Jan 2012, 08:12

Distraction from real life's issues is a lovely thing at times, so yes that's exactly what I meant. lol
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Re: Review: Half to Death by Robin Alexander

Postby Baker » 16 Jan 2012, 08:43

Actually, I interpreted as meaning that you gave it a bonus because it only required your reading attention for a short while--that is, you didn't waste too much time reading it. ;)
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