Monday, July 16, 2012

Not a fan of COME HOME

I just read Come Home by Lisa Scottoline and I have some issues with this story and author. I've read many other books by her before and while she's not my favorite author in the world, I've never been this irritated.

The premise of this book is that Jill, a pediatrician, has a daughter Megan and is engaged to Sam. On a rainy night her ex-stepdaughter Abby shows up, telling Jill her dad (and Jill's bastard ex-husband) is dead and might have been murdered. Jill decides to help the flighty Abby find out if he really was, putting herself, her family, her job, and her new relationship at stake.

First, she used the word 'hustled' in three consecutive chapters in such an overt way it stood out: Jill hustled to the car, Jill hustled to the police station, Jill hustled down the road

Another issue is the overuse of description that's not a contributor to the story, and done in such a way it reads like a high school student who either doesn't understand the concept of descriptive writing, or like someone who is trying to make a word count goal. It doesn't matter to the reader that she washed the blue mug, the yellow stripe on the Philly police car, or opened the silver slot in the window, or touch the brown freckles. This mires down the writing, detracts from it even (obviously!), and makes it sound very elementary school, and doesn't contribute to the story in anyway.

And the repetition of activities over and over again also was boring reading: she dropped the pod in the coffee maker and pushed brew. If the character did this once, she did at least 5 times in the book. The only thing the author didn't say specifically was Keurig. My God, just get a product placement endorsement already and say the frickin' name! Or have 'Jill' drink something else!!!!

And I really hate it when characters are hinted at being smart and then turn out to be stupid. Jill is supposed to be a pediatrician. I just want to say all the doctors I've dealt with in my life are good people who are compassionate and have a great bedside manner but are still professional in every way this character is not. Has this author never been to a doctor? seriously? And docs are smart people and 'Jill' is repeatedly doing one dumb thing after another and can't see the forest for the trees. It irritates me. And she is so whiny. I want to hit her.

I also hate the stuff that would never happen in the actual situation. I can certainly stretch my imagination but let me explain one example of what I mean. No one in this day and age is going to walk into a Philly police station and have a plain clothes detective come to the "customer service" window and say, "Good morning! I'm Detective Smith. How may I help you?" Uhhh, no. I want the author to walk into the cop shop in downtown Philly and see what will happen because a nice, smiling, exuberant detective isn't it. If it's supposed to be a real and believable situation, then write it that way!

This book needed a better editor who might have helped with these guffaws. Not only did I find much of the language to be trite and common, the plot line thin and contrived, I also found 6 grammar errors. And the cover art makes no sense.

Finally, my last criticism is that no one I know who has a crummy ex-husband would look into his death, especially if he were as crummy as Jill's. NO ONE would keep it up and risk everything.

I didn't like this books at all.