Thursday, October 21, 2010

Hold Me Closer, Necromancer by Lish McBride

I bought this book solely for the title. Hardback and all, full price at Border's because our loser Barnes & Noble didn't have a copy. I bought it this afternoon and finished it a few minutes ago.

Sam LaCroix is a college dropout working at a crummy fast-food restaurant. He's always been kind of a loser, but he's never actually been in trouble--not until a powerful necromancer turns up and gives Sam an ultimatum: join him or watch his family and friends die. Sam has no idea what the guy is talking about. Turns out that Sam's a necromancer too, just one of the secrets his mother's been keeping from him. Also, werewolves.

The first two chapters of this book are brilliant, funny, and excited me beyond all reason. I knew I'd found a winner. The characters are appealing, the story set-up fresh, and the writing tight and zingy.

Then I turned to chapter three.

I know I've mentioned before that I dislike point-of-view shifts in books. I find them distracting but usually not too annoying to mention in a review. In this book, though, the book starts out in first person, and when a writer is writing in first person they need to freaking stay with that one character, okay? Chapter three of this book is in third person from the bad guy's point of view. Many other subsequent chapters are likewise in third person from various other characters' points of view, interspersed with Sam's first person chapters. It was jarring and I hated it beyond all rational thought.

Most of all, it's sloppy. If author Lish McBride couldn't tell the complete story from one character's point of view, she should have written Sam in third person, not first. Better yet, she should have changed the plot so Sam had a bigger part. Sam actually did a lot of nothing. He gets beat up a lot.

Obviously the book is good enough that I read it in one sitting. It's not great, though. The title is great, I liked the characters, and the plot was cliched but serviceable. The writing was good except for a certain lack of description and, of course, the giant huge problem with points of view, which I cannot get past and cannot forgive. I don't care what McBride's next book is titled, I won't be dropping the cash for a hardback version. I may not bother with it at all.

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