I had to post a review on Amazon. I ordered a book which contained 3 books of Mary Roberts Rinehart, an old favorite of mine. One of the included books was The Case of Jennie Brice, one of her best.
I don't know how it happened, but there were so many odd errors in it. I almost had the impression that they had gotten ahold of the original galley proofs and published it as is. There were a lot of odd punctuation glitches: where_the_words were separated by an underscore. There should also a small illustration that shows the shape of a scar on a corpse. The shape of the scar is an important plot point. In the text, you see: [insert illustration here] instead of the actual illustration.
The worst error is on the last page, where the beginning of one paragraph switches abruptly mid-sentence to the end of the next paragraph, eliminating what should be the denoument of the book. And this happens twice on the last page! There is no publishing information on the book at all, or I would also have written a letter to the publisher.
In my review, I recommend the books themselves, but warn people away from this edition.
Something similar happened to me once, only it was a paper book I checked out of the library. It had a note printed in it saying it was an "advance reading copy" of the book from "uncorrected proofs." There were several typos, but nothing major like giant chunks of text missing (at least not that I noticed).
Though, if I recall correctly, I found the book itself unsatisfying, kind of half-baked, when I'd enjoyed other books by the same author--it was The Two Princesses of Bamarre
by Gail Carson Levine, author of Ella Enchanted
. It's a fairytale-type magical quest story, with a timid heroine who has to become stronger and overcome obstacles. There were a lot of objects and plotlines that appeared, seemed interesting, and then were abandoned, never to be seen again; and missed opportunities to use the heroine's natural strengths. Part of me kind of hopes it was a super-rough draft that somehow found its way to my library, and that the real book is actually much better.
I've been reading a series of books set in a tiny European country. The country is in something of an upheaval because of distant and foreign relatives of the royal family tried to take over the country. The problem is, these criminals seem to know the country better than the people who have lived there all their lives. They are able to get in and out of the royal palace before the royal guard even knows they are there, even with upto date security equipment. In the most recent story, the bad guys, force the male and female leads to get them into the very well protected crown jewels vaults and get away. They then hide in caves that they wouldn't know very much about, yet they are able to take captive two members of the royal army who know the caves very well. They get caught only because the good guys keep on coming and who finally get a luck break.
Oh, that's so irritating! I really dislike stories that hinge on that kind of thing. It's the Secret Service or the highly-trained royal ninja guards or something, and a bunch of bad guys completely cut them down, anticipate every move, know all about the secret tunnels and door codes and passwords, etc.. I think the only way that's acceptable is if the bad guys have someone highly placed on the inside helping them, who gave them all that information. Or, you know, someone who's a mind-reader or whatever. At least throw the audience a bone of plausibility.