The Land Of Stories #3: A Grimm Warning by Chris Colfer
This is a series I’ve been following pretty well, I think. I mean, I read them in order since I started this blog. And the whole time, something about them has bugged me about it. They’re funny and the plot has creative twists and the supporting cast are generally pretty wonderful and yet, something hasn’t seemed quite right about to me, the whole time. The voice, the narrative, the internal dialogue it all felt forced somehow.
But I think I’ve got it now. It’s not an authentic child’s voice. It’s written like an adult imagining how a child would talk and think and feel. And that will always leave it very flat to me I’m afraid. Goodreads seems to think it’s the bestest book ever written, but I don’t buy it. I’m a snob. I want Percy Jackson, I want Harry Potter, I watch Artemis Fowl and Alcatraz Smedry- I want language and personal thoughts and feelings and reactions that are distinct from all other characters. I don’t want to hear the writer coming through, bring his grown up speculations about pre-teens and presenting them like they make the characters deeper or better. I want to believe these characters could stand up and walk off the page, not think they’re puppets dancing along in front of their creator.
And it’s such a shame because there’s some really wonderful parts of the book. I love that Little Red Riding Hood is a narcissistic Queen in love with the frog prince. I love that Mother Goose has a goose named Lester and is a raging alcoholic. Goldilocks being a wild bandit is fabulous. Trollbella, the delightfully love obsessed childish troll queen is hilarious. Cornelius the fat, broken horned unicorn is just awesome. Grandma Pearl, the old lady that Connor and his crush kidnap from a train platform in London is my favourite character ever written for a bit of plot convenience ever.
I just can’t look passed the writing. I don’t need to hear Alex think “I don’t think Connor knows what’s going on” in one line and then Connor think “Something’s going on in the next one”. It’s lazy writing. I’m so over Alex monologuing for pages at a time about whether she can risk getting her heart broken, knowing what a broken heart can do to a fairy because you know what fourteen year old girls think about when they have a crush? Me neither, because I can’t speak for ever tweenage girl out there but it’s not a detailed risk analysis, that’s for sure. You could not tell Connor or Alex’s voice apart if there weren’t names, their styles and thoughts are so similar and while the supporting cast characters and fantastic, Even stylistic choices are poorly made. Sometimes five characters say line after line after line and the word “said” was used 5 times. It’s a creative story and the least creative writing ever.
Or maybe I’m being to hard on it, maybe I’m being a snob. That does happen. Like all the time. I’m a snob. Read it yourself.
Last movie I watched:
Circle of Friends. So cute guys. Benny is awesome.
Last TV shop I watched:
Witches of Eastwick. I don’t care if you don’t like it, I think it’s awesome.