A Book So Bad I didn’t Finish

Yes, for only the second or third time in my life, I’ve got a book of fiction so bad, I gave up. I tried really hard, and I made it halfway. But now, I feel, I have an obligation to warn you not to read this book. It’s called Fool’s Tavern by Ned Resnikoff. ISBN 0-7434-9295-1 if you care. I bought this book because the cover art appealed to me enough to pick it up. I read the back cover, and it still seemed interesting, so I bought it. I tried reading it on the flight to/from Las Vegas.

It’s not a problem with the book itself. The concept of the book is okay. Yeah, it gets downright silly in places, but that’s a matter of taste. What I might think is silly (medieval IMs) others might think clever. To each his/her own. It’s not even the style: many authors write short, simple sentences and never make it past that. Even Anne McCaffrey has that flaw. Even bad editing can be tolerated to some extent (Robert Aspirin’s last book was a travesty to the English language).

This book was an unmitigated disaster. There were several errors that I find unacceptable. The number of times apostrophes were used incorrectly (The lady’s went….) were appalling. Not to mention a number of IT’S and ITS errors. But that’s not all, there were simple cases of wrong words. It’s clear someone used a spell checker but didn’t actually READ what was there to see if it made sense.

“Mike took Mike’s….” — even a bad editor can figure out they’ve got the wrong character name in one of those slots. It really doesn’t matter because the sentence was also missing a word rendering the balance of it incomprehensible to any speaker of the English language. In the first half of the book, I gave up counting errors after I reached fifty (50) — and I’m referring to actual errors not anything in quotes, or marginal stuff.

This book sucked the big, fat, furry one.
I will save this book for two weeks. If you want it, you may have it. If not, I will give it to goodwill.

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