December 17, 2012

30 Books in 30 Days: "The Never Fable" by Steven Brandsdorfer

(CCLaP publishes mini-reviews of both books and movies on a regular basis, none lasting more than a few hundred words. A full list of CCLaP's book-based mini-reviews can be found on its main book page, and movies on the main movie page.)

The Never Fable, by Steven Brandsdorfer

The Never Fable
By Steven Brandsdorfer

Well, when you pour through a book a day like I've been doing this month, in an attempt to whittle down my now gigantic to-read list before the holidays are over, it's inevitable that you will eventually come across some clunkers; so I decided to save them up and share all of them in a row this week, so that my so-so reviews will hopefully have less of an audience and therefore less of an impact on these books here right before Christmas. First up, the self-published The Never Fable by Steven Brandsdorfer, which actually has a pretty decent premise: it tells the dual stories of a gentleman named Daniel Never, who exists simultaneously as a mental patient in contemporary New York City and as a foot soldier during Andrew Jackson's Florida campaign in the early 1800s, as both these lives are affected by various dark, seemingly fantastical touches. No, the problem lies directly in a subject that is common among self-published writers, which is pacing or more precisely a lack of one; namely, Brandsdorfer must have saved all the interesting bits of this story for the second half of this overinflated manuscript, because in the half I read, he will often go ten or twenty pages at a time while getting not a single interesting point across, just entire chapters that can literally be summed up with a simple "and then he sat in his car some more" or "and then they walked through a swamp for another eight hours." I know it's unfair to judge a book without finishing it, but it's also a fact that a book needs to be interesting enough during any particular part of it to compel a reader to continue; and after trudging through a literal 150 pages of The Never Fable with still not a single major plot point occurring, I feel this is a large enough chunk that I can at least say with authority that it's not really worth your time. In its defense, the book has received good reviews from others, so I suspect it's worth finishing if you have a particular interest in these subjects, but otherwise my recommendation is to skip it altogether.

Out of 10: 6.8

Filed by Jason Pettus at 10:03 AM, December 17, 2012. Filed under: Literature | Literature:Fiction | Reviews |