Thursday, September 4, 2014

Book-a-Day 4: Least Favourite Book by a Favourite Author

The Witness by Nora Roberts.  Such a pity.

I know that I have mentioned this in one or another of the TTT's I did last year, I thought I had reviewed it too, but apparently though I reviewed it on Goodreads I forgot to post the review here too. Normally this author's books are great, and I thoroughly enjoy reading them, but I felt that there was so much missed potential with this book.  It had a fantastic start, and looked like it might be one of her greatest, but then it just totally fizzled out for me.

The story starts with the heroine as a teenager witnessing a mob hit, and then things get serious.  She has a difficult relationship with her only parent, goes into witness protection, things get nasty, good people die and eventually she escapes and goes into hiding.  And then she settles down into a sweet small town Somewhereville, meets a policeman (Sheriff I think?), um's and ah's for a few pages about starting a relationship with him, and then suddenly everything's nice and normal.  Apart from a couple of townsfolk who want to cause trouble there's nothing that really happens.

There was plenty of potential from those troublesome few who could have dug up some dirt, alerted the mob to her location.  Same with a private detective who appears in the story, is described as really good and thorough (but apparently not good enough), and so on and so forth.  You never really have that feeling that our heroine's secret identity/cover is ever in jeopardy.  I know it's a Nora Roberts romance and the hero and heroine are always going to end up OK, and the baddies will always get what they deserve, but that doesn't mean that you can't put them at risk and make the reader panic for them.

Quite frankly it made me wonder what the Editors were doing.  Are they so convinced that it will do well 'Hey, it's a Nora Roberts book and millions of people will buy them regardless of how good it is, so why should we waste time and effort making sure the story is good?'

Don't get me wrong, I read it and I kind of enjoyed it, but it could have been SO MUCH BETTER!  I'm tempted one day to do some fan fiction on it and re-make it the way I think it should have been done.

Sorry.  Rant over.

No comments:

Post a Comment