For months now, there’s been much talk about a certain trilogy of books. I’ve seen blog posts, tweets, and Facebook updates, as well as heard discussions at Target, a coffee shop, and the pool. Hell, one day I even got involved with an impromptu discussion group at the front desk of my hair salon. I’m not going to name the books directly because I know that you know what I’m talking.
I read the books in question several months ago. Barnes & Noble was running a special on the first one for Nooks and I believe it might have been because American sales were initially lagging and they were trying to lure people in with promises of a cheap (cost, that is) read. I wasn’t particularly interested in the genre, but shrugged and thought, “What the hell, I’ll try almost anything once.”
(That does not apply to the topic matter of the books themselves, so don’t expect to find anything freaky if you ever come visit Jenworld.)
(We keep that shit hidden away.)
Anyway, I downloaded the first book but didn’t read it right away. I eventually got around to it and was utterly drawn in. So much so that I bought the next two books and ultimately read all three books in a five evening late night literary marathon, then started re-reading the series the next day.
So there’s my shameful confession. Now you know.
But let’s step back and look at the books as if this were a book club meeting, shall we?
In short, these books are very badly written. Very very very very very very badly written. They’ve been described as “Twilight for women” and that makes sense to me, as it is my understanding that the Twilight books are just as badly written. The books I’m talking about today have plots so thin as to make a supermodel look overweight by comparison. They could have also used some serious, intense, deep editing with an eye toward getting the writing above a 5th grade reading level (not to insult 5th graders). And, honestly, as I was reading, there were times when I was skimming paragraphs because they were so dull and the second time around, I skipped some sections of the books altogether.
That said, there are some very interesting scenes where I learned some new things, some of which had to be researched online because I wasn’t quite certain what was going on. And, for some reason — again, this is embarrassing, but I do like to be honest here at JOTE — the storyline was somewhat fun, if rather improbable.
We had a mini book review session during the recent Derf gathering. At the time, I described the books as Twinkies: You don’t want to eat them often, but every now and then you want one. As you eat it, it’s great, but then you feel slightly ill afterward and vow never to eat Twinkies again.
Another Derf (I believe it was Patience) said that the books are actually more like circus peanuts and she’s totally right: You try them once just to say you have, feel a bit sick afterward, and swear them off for at least a decade, possibly more, until you’ve forgotten how queasy they made you feel and you try them one more time, at which time you remember why you don’t eat them.
So there you have it, my official review of those books: They’re very badly written, but you almost have to read them just so that you’ll know what everyone is talking about.
Have you read the books yet? If so, what did you think? If not, why not?
I’m going to ask everyone to keep it clean and even somewhat vague in the comments, as my daughters will read this post and I’d like to not educate them on certain topics until they’re a bit older. Thank you.