Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Late-K Lunacy

Late-K Lunacy by Ted Bernard
Petra Books: 4/14/18
eBook review copy; 428 pages
paperback ISBN-13: 9781927032831

Late-K Lunacy by Ted Bernard was a did not finish for me. I very rarely stop reading a book, so that alone speaks volumes. While the opening is set in a dystopian future, this ecology-based fictional novel is set in the present and focusing on a professor encouraging a group of student to consider the damaging effects of climate change. There is also fracking starting in the local woods. I tried to keep reading it several times until I finally gave up.

It was a chore to read right from the start due to the overabundance of descriptions and a preachy-lecturing tone to the narrative - all to the detriment of the plot. Everything is over-described, even minor characters. Early on I was muttering to myself, "Just get on with the story." I can accept lecturing me when you also provide me with a compelling set of main characters in a well-paced plot. Then throw in some suspense and intrigue. Develop those compelling characters and establish more of the setting along the way.

What didn't work: immediately lecturing the reader about your environmental concerns; setting the novel in an almost utopian small Ohio college town and providing all the history of this fictitious campus; declaring a love for Millennials making everyone who is not one or all pro-Millennial bad;  making the "bad" guys all stereotypical caricatures, either in descriptions of them (they are never looking good, or even okay) or in their speech patterns; making fun of areas of the country that you consider less intellectually developed than you.... I could go on but the gest of my point is that this reader gave up on Late-K Lunacy pretty early on because the writing wasn't worth the effort. (And it's not that I innately dislike environmental issues, college towns, and young adults - I live in a university town, am environmentally conscious, and have much-appreciated Millennials working for me.) Messages in novels are fine; almost all novels have some message in the plot, but make sure the actual quality of the writing can carry your message-laden plot.

Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of the publisher/author through Library Thing’s Early Reviewer Program.

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