I was speaking to someone a few days ago who had just finished reading my book. I asked him to sum up his opinion of the book in a single sentence. I don’t know why I asked him that, but presumably because the conversation was headed in that direction. It made sense at the time. Anyway, this is what he came up with:
“… Like Shantaram but well written …”
Now I’m familiar with this book but I have never read it. I tried once, some years ago, but I think I gave up after about 50 pages. So in the interests of research I looked it up on Amazon. Let’s put it to the first sentence test:
“… It took me a long time and most of the world to learn what I know about love and fate and the choices we make, but the heart of it came to me in an instant, while I was chained to a wall and being tortured …”
Yeah, that’s not very good at all. If I had to rewrite this sentence to try and save it, (and I think it’s beyond saving), I might come up with something like this:
No, sorry. Scratch that attempt. I tried, I really did, but nothing can save that first sentence. If any of you want to have a shot at it, be my guest.
Reading the hilarious one star reviews, this has to be my favorite quoted sentence:
“… She walked into Leopold’s at the usual time, and when she stopped a table near me to talk with friends, I tried once more to find the words for the foliant blaze of her green eyes. I thought of leaves and opals and the warm shallows of island seas. But the living emerald in Karla’s eyes , made luminous by the sunflowers of gold light that surrounded the pupils, was softer, far softer …”
Christ almighty. Anyway, I’m still waiting for my first one star review. I know it will come in time; you can’t please everyone in this world and if you aim to do so you end up writing drivel. Hopefully they’ll be as eloquent as some of the reviewers taking apart this poor book.