Wednesday, December 5, 2018

A Tell-Tale Sign of Bad Writing

(At least in my opinion.)

Quite frequently, buying a book I’ve never heard of, written by an author I had never heard of, is not a good idea.  Well, I ignored those lessons and took a chance on a “golden age” (in this case, it appears to be fool’s gold) mystery.  (Fortunately, I paid only $0.99 for it, so it at least cost me little, in financial terms, anyway.  
To be fair, this was the author's first mystery (of 7), and at least one of his later books was reasonably good.
The easiest way to express my difficulty with the book is to list, in order of their appearance, the surnames of the characters:

Venables (a journalist)
*Budge (Mrs.)
Brown (a servant)
*Budge (Mr.)
Eppoliki (this character was around for a while, but unnamed)
(This is in the first 10% of the book…and we continue)
*Bray (Scotland Yard D.I.)
*Cuff (

I have placed an asterisk before the names that, well, raise the odd question or two.  I’m fully aware that too many Smiths and Joneses and so on is boring.  But the Mumby to Blood string was a bit much.  And D.I. Bray seems a bit precious, especially because he seems prone to braying.


  1. Laughing out loud. I refuse to read books with people named Gemma--yes, I know the mom in Sons of Anarchy was named that--made an exception. Speaking of bad writing, can't remember the book but in FOUR scenes a TV was "burbling" in the background...Editors--get some!

  2. I'm currently reading this book and determined to stick with it, but it's awful! This post helped me laugh. The names are like a child's book. Miss Sanctuary? Are you kidding me? LOL