Thursday, January 24, 2008

News and reviews

There's some exciting stuff coming here in February! Lynette Eason's blog tour, a European historical scavenger hunt, a review of Ruth Morren's "The Rogue's Redemption" and possibly an interview with her. I'm excited!

I'm over halfway done with The Midwife of St. Petersburg. And I'm disappointed. I am not enjoying it like I thought I would because of one little thing. Too much dialogue! This is the best example of how NOT to write a middle that I've come across in a long time.

Too much dialogue you say? Yes, too much. Too much talking about things that don't move the plot forward. A full 2/3'rds of the book takes place in the span of about 10 hours and is one long speech after another that does not move the plot forward. Yes the causes of the Revolution are interesting, but I don't need to be subjected to lecture after lecture after lecture from one particular character on what all is wrong with autocratic Russia. This book is supposed to be about Karena, not her brother.

The hero and the heroine still don't even really know each other and there's less than a 4th of the book left. They're not even in St. Petersburg yet! I don't feel like I know Karena or Alex. I know her brother very well though. But he's not a main character and he shouldn't be getting so much face-time. The bulk of the plot should NOT be revolving around him.

The back cover blurb also isn't jiving with what's going on. There is no romance between Karena and Alex. Just physical reactions to each other's presence. They've spoken maybe 100 words to each other that don't have something to do with Karena's brother. The book is nearly over and since it is supposed to be a historical romance I expect the hero and heroine to have already made their declarations of love to each other and they're fighting for recognition that they're doing the right thing. Considering their very different backgrounds, that would be a lot more interesting to me than listening to Karena's brother and uncle.

There's a very interesting sub plot going on with a jeweled brooch, which I feel should have been given more importance than the brother's situation because the brooch directly affects Karena. Who is supposed to be the main character.

Mrs. Chaikin has written over 30 books. I expected more from this one. Seeing as how Russia is my favorite subject and I write Russian historical fiction, this worries me. A lot.

I want to read her Silk House series, but I think I'll be checking my library for it first.

1 comment :

  1. Hmmm . . . sounds like she's fallen prey to Tolkien's "Council of Elrond" disease . . . lots of speeches, no plot movement!