Author Topic: Reading/Book Pet Peeves  (Read 255081 times)

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MariaE

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #240 on: February 06, 2013, 10:52:33 AM »
What about excessive descriptions of food? I wanted a sandwich and a pan pizza so bad after reading Stieg Larsson's books... :D

My friend Anne-Marie has posited that the frequency with which characters in the Millennium Trilogy eat pan pizza and open-faced sandwiches and drink coffee is simply reflective of what Stieg Larsson was consuming at the time. He was drinking a cup of coffee, thinking about what do write next, and just decided that Lisbeth would have a cup of coffee too.

The funny thing is that I never noticed because people in Scandinavia really do drink that much coffee ;)

On the other hand, reading "Farmer Boy" or any of the "Famous Five" books always makes me soooo hungry :)

Haha, I have a friend who's Swedish, and she was just like, "Yeah, that's pretty much how we eat in Sweden. Sandwiches and coffee. All the time."

Denmark too  ;D
 
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artk2002

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #241 on: February 06, 2013, 11:20:45 AM »
When authors attempt to write dialogue or some lines of text in a language that they plainly do not speak. Especially if it's a language with tons of speakers, so it wouldn't exactly be difficult to locate someone who could proofread your text to make sure you haven't made mistakes.

I remember one book where a character occasionally spoke in Spanish. Which was fine, except the author apparently wrote said character's dialogue by running sentences in English through Google translate or something. Seriously, Spanish is a major world language! It's the first language of millions of people, and millions more (such as yours truly) can read it well enough to tell that in the space of 3 sentences, you have assigned the wrong gender to three nouns, put an adjective in the wrong place relative to its noun, and had the character using a distinctly Spanish-from-Spain verb form that the character, being Guatemalan, would not use.

Here's a piece by a friend of mine on that topic. She's a native Spanish speaker and a book reviewer so the combination is pretty good. Warning: That post is ok, but some of her stuff is NSFW.

My peeve is authors who constantly use brand names. The character doesn't drive her car, or even her luxury sedan; she drives her turbo Mercedes S-class. Every reference to the car thereafter is to "the Mercedes." Hey, we already know the character is wealthy and has impeccable taste. The worst for this is Patricia Cornwell. Her protagonist doesn't have a watch, or an expensive watch, or a very expensive watch. No, we are told seventeen times about her BREITLING TITANIUM watch. Gee, I wonder what Cornwell got/wants for her birthday.

It wouldn't surprise me one bit if an author as popular as Cornwell got "product placement" money. It happens in TV and movies, so I can't see the advertising folks leaving mass fiction untouched.
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BabyMama

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #242 on: February 06, 2013, 11:40:43 AM »
What about excessive descriptions of food? I wanted a sandwich and a pan pizza so bad after reading Stieg Larsson's books... :D

My friend Anne-Marie has posited that the frequency with which characters in the Millennium Trilogy eat pan pizza and open-faced sandwiches and drink coffee is simply reflective of what Stieg Larsson was consuming at the time. He was drinking a cup of coffee, thinking about what do write next, and just decided that Lisbeth would have a cup of coffee too.

On the other hand, the excessive descriptions of food in A Song of Ice and Fire (aka the Game of Thrones books) are, in my opinion, a bonus. They led some people to write a food blog and a cookbook based on all the food described, and they're both amazing!

^ No joke! At least pizza and sandwiches are quick and easy. I had the constant urge to roast a chicken or duck while reading those, with nice crispy skin...
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Twirly

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #243 on: February 06, 2013, 12:06:44 PM »
What about excessive descriptions of food? I wanted a sandwich and a pan pizza so bad after reading Stieg Larsson's books... :D

On the other hand, the excessive descriptions of food in A Song of Ice and Fire (aka the Game of Thrones books) are, in my opinion, a bonus. They led some people to write a food blog and a cookbook based on all the food described, and they're both amazing!

^ No joke! At least pizza and sandwiches are quick and easy. I had the constant urge to roast a chicken or duck while reading those, with nice crispy skin...

It was the wine that did it for me…pages and pages of characters enjoying what sounded like amazing wine made it near impossible to read without eventually ending up with a glass for myself. I was engrossed in something on the computer and only half listening to my husband once when he was asking my wine preference for a dinner and I vaguely responded "oh an Arbor Gold would be good." I didn’t even realize until he burst out laughing and replied if he ever traveled through Westeros he'd be sure to bring me a bottle but in the meantime what kind of Earth wine would I prefer?

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Twik

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #244 on: February 06, 2013, 12:15:17 PM »
My peeve is authors who constantly use brand names. The character doesn't drive her car, or even her luxury sedan; she drives her turbo Mercedes S-class. Every reference to the car thereafter is to "the Mercedes." Hey, we already know the character is wealthy and has impeccable taste. The worst for this is Patricia Cornwell. Her protagonist doesn't have a watch, or an expensive watch, or a very expensive watch. No, we are told seventeen times about her BREITLING TITANIUM watch. Gee, I wonder what Cornwell got/wants for her birthday.

It wouldn't surprise me one bit if an author as popular as Cornwell got "product placement" money. It happens in TV and movies, so I can't see the advertising folks leaving mass fiction untouched.

I suspect you're correct that this happens more than we know.
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Twik

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #245 on: February 06, 2013, 02:17:08 PM »
How about - when publishers take a beloved childhood heroine and decide to market her as, well, as something that indicates they've never actually *read* the book in question: http://www.amazon.com/Anne-Green-Gables-Avonlea-Island/dp/1481024116/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top.

(To be fair, it is a "CreateSpace" edition on Amazon, whatever that is. But I understand that Anne, and her image, are still legally controlled by Montgomery's heirs, which makes me wonder if this is really an "authorized" edition.)
My cousin's memoir of love and loneliness while raising a child with multiple disabilities will be out on Amazon soon! Know the Night, by Maria Mutch, has been called "full of hope, light, and companionship for surviving the small hours of the night."

nuit93

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #246 on: February 06, 2013, 02:46:14 PM »
How about - when publishers take a beloved childhood heroine and decide to market her as, well, as something that indicates they've never actually *read* the book in question: http://www.amazon.com/Anne-Green-Gables-Avonlea-Island/dp/1481024116/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top.

(To be fair, it is a "CreateSpace" edition on Amazon, whatever that is. But I understand that Anne, and her image, are still legally controlled by Montgomery's heirs, which makes me wonder if this is really an "authorized" edition.)

Wow...what the heck?

I can understand using a movie still with Megan Follows, even if those movies are 20+ years old. 

But a blonde Anne?  Noooo...besides, she wanted raven-black hair when she was younger ;)

Twik

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #247 on: February 06, 2013, 03:15:42 PM »
I suspect that it was the only "farm girl stock photo" they had. But how expensive would it have been to make their own, if they were publishing a book?
My cousin's memoir of love and loneliness while raising a child with multiple disabilities will be out on Amazon soon! Know the Night, by Maria Mutch, has been called "full of hope, light, and companionship for surviving the small hours of the night."

rose red

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #248 on: February 06, 2013, 04:27:53 PM »
That cover is horrifying.  Just don't have a picture at all, or have a picture of a house or something.

One Fish, Two Fish

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #249 on: February 06, 2013, 04:31:38 PM »
I absolutely detest when the author says that a character gives a witty remark or a scathing reply, but doesn't say what the character says.
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Twik

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #250 on: February 06, 2013, 04:39:16 PM »
I absolutely detest when the author says that a character gives a witty remark or a scathing reply, but doesn't say what the character says.

Ah, the verbal equivalent of the "informed attribute".

"Jane replied to his ignorant comment with a witty putdown that had the entire room convulsed with hysteria" means "the author couldn't actually think up a good response, so just tells you it was a zinger".
My cousin's memoir of love and loneliness while raising a child with multiple disabilities will be out on Amazon soon! Know the Night, by Maria Mutch, has been called "full of hope, light, and companionship for surviving the small hours of the night."

Tea Drinker

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #251 on: February 06, 2013, 06:20:12 PM »
I absolutely detest when the author says that a character gives a witty remark or a scathing reply, but doesn't say what the character says.

Ah, the verbal equivalent of the "informed attribute".

"Jane replied to his ignorant comment with a witty putdown that had the entire room convulsed with hysteria" means "the author couldn't actually think up a good response, so just tells you it was a zinger".

On the other hand, that's not as bad as an author proving that no, s/he cannot write poetry, or come up with a good witty response even when given plenty of time to think about it. If someone is described as the greatest songwriter of her generation, including third-rate song lyrics does not in fact add verisimilitude. There are novelists who can also write poetry, and some of them include it in their fiction when appropriate. For example, Emma Bull is both a musician and a novelist, and her fantasy novel <cite>War for the Oaks</cite> includes original song lyrics, attributed to the protagonist, and they're good enough for it to work. (Nor does Emma claim to be the greatest songwriter of her generation.)
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wendelenn

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #252 on: February 06, 2013, 09:37:44 PM »
How about - when publishers take a beloved childhood heroine and decide to market her as, well, as something that indicates they've never actually *read* the book in question: http://www.amazon.com/Anne-Green-Gables-Avonlea-Island/dp/1481024116/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top.

(To be fair, it is a "CreateSpace" edition on Amazon, whatever that is. But I understand that Anne, and her image, are still legally controlled by Montgomery's heirs, which makes me wonder if this is really an "authorized" edition.)

You beat me to it. Unbelievable!
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ica171

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #253 on: February 06, 2013, 09:40:35 PM »
How about - when publishers take a beloved childhood heroine and decide to market her as, well, as something that indicates they've never actually *read* the book in question: http://www.amazon.com/Anne-Green-Gables-Avonlea-Island/dp/1481024116/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top.

(To be fair, it is a "CreateSpace" edition on Amazon, whatever that is. But I understand that Anne, and her image, are still legally controlled by Montgomery's heirs, which makes me wonder if this is really an "authorized" edition.)

You beat me to it. Unbelievable!

Although I have to say, that Amazon page shows another one of my reading pet peeves that's not strictly literary--it annoys me to no end when someone gives a book a bad review for something like the picture on the cover. It's not bad formatting and it's not plot-related, so it shouldn't factor into your review.

rose red

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Re: Reading/Book Pet Peeves
« Reply #254 on: February 06, 2013, 09:51:13 PM »
^ That bugs me too.  I've seen one star reviews because the book never arrived, or the seller didn't describe the condition of the book correctly.