Author Topic: Reading/Book Pet Peeves  (Read 224944 times)

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dawnfire

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #180 on: January 30, 2013, 05:23:58 PM »
It's Star Trek (Specifically Star Trek S.C.E.: Belly of the Beast).  For those that follow Next Generation, remember Sonya Gomez, a plucky Ensign who spilled hot chocolate on Picard?  Yeah, she's in charge of the Starfleet Corps of Engineers.   ::)

As much as I love the Star Trek TV shows, I've often been disappointed by the novels (for all series). Some of them are quite good, but I find that a lot of them are just sort of mediocre. I don't know if it's authors being paid to write for a series they didn't conceive of and don't really love that much, or maybe executive meddling smoothing away any slightly controversial points that would add interest to the story, or what. Do people find this in novels based on other movies/TV shows, like Star Wars, Dr. Who, etc.?

ETA: This is also a reading peeve of mine, that so many novels spun off from movies/shows I like are pointless. Maybe this is only to be expected... ? Like expecting the "Avengers candy sticks" I got at Halloween to actually be good.

I loved "Q In Law".

that was one of my all time favourates :)

Diane AKA Traska

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #181 on: January 30, 2013, 05:42:01 PM »
It's Star Trek (Specifically Star Trek S.C.E.: Belly of the Beast).  For those that follow Next Generation, remember Sonya Gomez, a plucky Ensign who spilled hot chocolate on Picard?  Yeah, she's in charge of the Starfleet Corps of Engineers.   ::)

As much as I love the Star Trek TV shows, I've often been disappointed by the novels (for all series). Some of them are quite good, but I find that a lot of them are just sort of mediocre. I don't know if it's authors being paid to write for a series they didn't conceive of and don't really love that much, or maybe executive meddling smoothing away any slightly controversial points that would add interest to the story, or what. Do people find this in novels based on other movies/TV shows, like Star Wars, Dr. Who, etc.?

ETA: This is also a reading peeve of mine, that so many novels spun off from movies/shows I like are pointless. Maybe this is only to be expected... ? Like expecting the "Avengers candy sticks" I got at Halloween to actually be good.

I loved "Q In Law".

that was one of my all time favourates :)

Haven't read that yet, but it's on my list.  Do NOT spoil it for me!  :)
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Queen of Clubs

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #182 on: January 30, 2013, 05:54:38 PM »
I went "O.o but... they're roommates... and they are both straight in the series.... what!? O.o..."

Many fanfic authors go "Challenge accepted" to that.

Which is fine- so long as you mark it as slash. Not marking it and letting people walk into it is considered rude, at least in the fandoms I'm in. (BTW, where on earth do you find gen Sentinel fic? I don't think I've ever seen it.)

http://www.wolfpanther.com/ is a gen Sentinel fanfic archive.  There are a number of authors posted there.

My fanfic pet peeve is about slash authors labelling their stories gen.  I know they mean 'gen rated' but it makes it harder to find gen (as in the genre).

My book pet peeve is when I'm reading a book (or a fanfic, come to that) and discover the author has little knowledge of the rules of grammar or punctuation.  If you don't know how to use punctuation, please, for the love of commas, learn before you put your story out there.

Nikko-chan

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #183 on: January 30, 2013, 07:02:15 PM »
Since we are also talking about fanfiction, what makes me run far away screaming is changing a character's gender and/or making up a brother or sister.

Guilty...  :-[

Morrigan

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #184 on: January 30, 2013, 10:19:52 PM »
One of my pet peeves is that childhood characters never grow up - like Trixie Belden for example.

I know that these are written as children's books but Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys, never age and it would be so much more fun if they did... a couple of years at least.  Maybe get them to college age or at least driving...

The award-winner for the most extreme instance of this, ever, must be the "Just William" short stories by the British writer Richmal Crompton. Her naughty-boy hero William Brown manages to stay at the age of eleven or twelve, for some forty years: the series -- many hundreds of stories in dozens upon dozens of books -- was written between approximately 1920 and 1960.  William's small band of young fellow-miscreants, and his parents and siblings, also remain throughout, at the ages they were when the series started (while history goes on happening around them).

With these stories, however, "willing suspension of disbelief" comes into play. Being a mischievous 11/12-year-old is what William is "about" -- lovers of the stories would not want him any other way !


And Junie B. Jones, after graduating from Kindergarten, has been in First Grade for years (and, according to the author, will never go up to Second Grade.)  I think in humor books about/for children, it makes sense.

I actually pointed this out way back on page 1, but also the Saddle Club & Baby-Sitter's Club spend several summer vacations and never age...

CrochetFanatic

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #185 on: January 31, 2013, 04:39:15 AM »
Got a couple of fanfic-related ones.

1. If they were in High School. 
No.  Everybody seems to be doing it, and nobody does it well.  These are totally different characters, probably classmates of the author, who just happen to have the names of fandom characters tacked on.  They rarely resemble the characters they are supposed to be.

2. Species-swapping.
That is, badly-done species-swapping.  I have seen it done well, but this isn't what I'm talking about.  Human characters who are no longer human, without any explanation.  Non-human characters who are now human, same scenario.  Or, a different version: character is changed to something else, has amnesia, and falls in love with the hero/heroine...who, by the way, has no idea who they're really talking to, despite very obvious clues.  Such as having the same voice and hair color, for example!

3. Severely underage characters (think 14 years old) falling in looooove, getting pregnant, and "making a stand" to their parents. 
Bonus points if the parents are okay or happy with it.  Double bonus points if they marry (still 14), raise their child, and live happily ever after without any problems or fights other than a romantic rival who comes along and tries to steal one member of the Golden Couple.  No mention of a job for either parent.  Some fics blatantly state that the grandparents are overjoyed to support them.  Hm, anyone out there think that this might be wishful thinking on the part of the young teenaged author?  Hm?  Nah.  ;)

If anyone likes or writes stories like this, I truly mean no offense.  But when I see a story going in that direction, I hit the "back" arrow and resume scrolling down through the list of stories.

MariaE

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #186 on: January 31, 2013, 04:54:10 AM »
Since we are also talking about fanfiction, what makes me run far away screaming is changing a character's gender and/or making up a brother or sister.

Guilty...  :-[

It's only an issue for me if it's made blatantly obvious in the books that such a character doesn't exist.

Harry Potter's brother suddenly turning up? No. Just no.
Arthur Weasley's brother turning up? Sure, go for it.
 
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Winterlight

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #187 on: January 31, 2013, 08:09:21 AM »
I went "O.o but... they're roommates... and they are both straight in the series.... what!? O.o..."

Many fanfic authors go "Challenge accepted" to that.

Which is fine- so long as you mark it as slash. Not marking it and letting people walk into it is considered rude, at least in the fandoms I'm in. (BTW, where on earth do you find gen Sentinel fic? I don't think I've ever seen it.)

http://www.wolfpanther.com/ is a gen Sentinel fanfic archive.  There are a number of authors posted there.

My fanfic pet peeve is about slash authors labelling their stories gen.  I know they mean 'gen rated' but it makes it harder to find gen (as in the genre).

My book pet peeve is when I'm reading a book (or a fanfic, come to that) and discover the author has little knowledge of the rules of grammar or punctuation.  If you don't know how to use punctuation, please, for the love of commas, learn before you put your story out there.

Thank you!
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Winterlight

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #188 on: January 31, 2013, 08:16:27 AM »
One of my pet peeves is that childhood characters never grow up - like Trixie Belden for example.

I know that these are written as children's books but Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys, never age and it would be so much more fun if they did... a couple of years at least.  Maybe get them to college age or at least driving...

But then, they wouldn't appeal to their target audience, which is young teenagers.

Twelve year olds will not be much interested in Nancy's musings on menopause as she hunts for clues.

And the Hardy Boys drove, I believe, a roadster.

So did Nancy! Or rather, a convertible.

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Bexx27

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #189 on: January 31, 2013, 09:40:15 AM »
I realize this is my personal taste, but the books that frustrate me most are the ones that purposely leave more to the reader's interpretation/imagination than they actually explain. I actually prefer obvious plot holes and/or implausible scenarios because at least then I know what the author intended even if he/she messed up a bit.

My book club just read Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro. It was an interesting book, but left so many unanswered questions. Knowing some of those answers one way or another would have completely changed my reaction to the book. I get that the author left things vague on purpose and the point was to make the reader think, but I hate speculating when I can't ever figure out the "truth" because the author didn't create it. I don't want to make up parts of the story myself from thin air; I'd write my own book if I did! I also suspect the author chose to explain as little as possible because he knew the more he explained, the less plausible the book's premise would seem. 

Again, I realize that's my personal pet peeve and lots of people probably like filling in the gaps themselves. Or they don't share my compulsion to have "the whole story" in the first place.
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shadowfox79

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #190 on: January 31, 2013, 09:53:47 AM »

My book pet peeve is when I'm reading a book (or a fanfic, come to that) and discover the author has little knowledge of the rules of grammar or punctuation.  If you don't know how to use punctuation, please, for the love of commas, learn before you put your story out there.

I agree. I was recommended a book on Amazon which sounded brilliant, so I downloaded a sample to my Kindle. In the first two pages there were fifteen punctuation errors, generally like so:

"What does he want me to do", he said.
"Go home".

INSIDE THE BLOODY QUOTES!! (deep breath) It's not that hard!

Thank goodness for free samples. I'd have gone mad trying to read an entire book of that.

BabyMama

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #191 on: January 31, 2013, 10:18:17 AM »
When the character jumps from one location to another, but there seems to be no passage of time. Like from London to New York, and oh look he's suddenly there. No, I don't particularly want to hear about how John had to stand in line at the airport, get his baggage checked, go through the scanner,  kill time before his flight, sit next to a smelly person with a screaming baby on the plane, ate a premade in-flight sandwich, etc., but it really throws me when the characters are suddenly...somewhere else. I hate it in movies and TV too.

Verloona Ti

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #192 on: January 31, 2013, 10:21:23 AM »
I realize this is my personal taste, but the books that frustrate me most are the ones that purposely leave more to the reader's interpretation/imagination than they actually explain. I actually prefer obvious plot holes and/or implausible scenarios because at least then I know what the author intended even if he/she messed up a bit.



Sigrid Undset is really, REALLY bad about this. I tried to plow through The Master of Hestviken a few weeks ago, and her approach to so many events was elliptical to the extreme. Multiple times characters referred back to earlier events that I recalled not at all. For an example,  a woman was raped in this book, but there was NOTHING in the text from her interactions with her rapist, before or after the rape, to indicate an assault  had occurred. I went back to the chapters with both of them in it, and I confirmed : NOTHING in the text, not even a row of ......  as old time books used to show something sexual was taking place, NOTHING. Just a few chapters later, she's suddenly pregnant, and she makes a comment about the other character having assaulted her in a hay loft. And the rapist later admitted to a third character that  he had taken her by force, but again...Nothing in the text either indicated an assault had taken place or showed the victim behaving any differently to her assailant afterwards. If Undset didn't want to deal with sexual situations, it would be better to leave them out entirely , rather than  make the reader wonder if a chapter had been left out at the binders. She's a fine writer, but this tendency (and this rape/pregnancy is only the most extreme instance of it) of hers to tell and not even try to show even a teeny bit makes reading her a bit frustrating. It makes the reader feel as if the fault is the reader's for not paying attention-when there really was nothing in the text to pay attention to!
« Last Edit: January 31, 2013, 10:23:04 AM by Verloona Ti »

Winterlight

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #193 on: January 31, 2013, 10:41:01 AM »
I just quit reading a biography where the author did online personality tests as her "subject."  And considered it research. Forget it.

One of my other peeves was that the book was very poorly organized. It's a joint biography of Czar Nicholas and Czarina Alexandra of Russia. The author started in 1913, five years before their deaths, then jumped back to their childhoods in chapter 5, a third of the way through the book!

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Kariachi

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #194 on: January 31, 2013, 10:50:29 AM »
Since we are also talking about fanfiction, what makes me run far away screaming is changing a character's gender and/or making up a brother or sister.

Guilty...  :-[

Eh, so have I, personal tastes and all that.

Although I did just remember an issue I have specific to genderswap fics.

Do some research on names if you are writing genderswap, I beg of you! If the character's name is, say, 'Kenneth', and you want them to still go by 'Ken', not a problem. We have names like Kenina, Kendra, and Kendall all available and actual names. Just don't, for the love of all that is holy and/or good in the world, say 'her' name is 'Kennethine' or something. That isn't a name, it's some lazy git's attempt to feminize a perfectly good name instead of actually finding out if there's anything else that works.   >:(

And don't even try to say that you had to to keep a pattern going; I will bet money that if you'd done any research you'd have found something that fit!


Yeah, I take my genderswap fics seriously. They have so much potential to let us see the character from a different angle, but are rarely ever done well:'(
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