Sunday, September 4, 2011

Review: Envy

Envy (Empty Coffin, Book 1)
By Gregg Olsen
Expected publication September 6, 2011 by Splinter

Twins Hayley and Taylor get feelings about certain events. And when their former best friend, Katelyn, is found electrocuted in her bathtub, they begin to get those feelings. Using their feelings and their special bond as twins, they are determined to find out if Katie's death was an accident, a suicide, or something much more sinister.

Oh jeez. Here we go. First, a confession: I did not finish this book. So maybe I missed out on a whole bunch of awesomeness that happens after the first sixty pages. But, this brings me to my point.

I did not finish this book because I was unable to force myself to read anymore of it. This book, the first sixty pages of which I read, is horrendous. I don't even know if I can describe how bad this book is. Because I can't exactly put my finger on it. I was pretty excited to read it - I'd heard some buzz about it and it seemed like it could be a really cool premise. Plus, Olsen is an author I've heard of in the adult world. I guess maybe I don't actually remember what I've heard about Olsen - because if his adult books are like this one, WHO READS THEM? AND THINKS THEY'RE GOOD? I know I only read 60 pages here but in that 60 pages, I was pained. I learned nothing about any of the characters beyond stereotypical notions of who they are supposed to be. The narrative is frantic and almost feels schizophrenic - I don't have any idea who is allegedly telling this story because I think Olsen tries to give every possible point of view - and absolutely fails. I think this is probably my biggest problem with the book - I absolutely could not endure this narrative for a moment longer. Additionally, Olsen so clearly inserted himself into the story - and not in a clever, endearing way. The main characters' father is a true crime writer - though I suppose I don't know enough about Olsen himself to know how similar this character actually is to him. Regardless, it seems like a pointless decision. I have some desire to see where this story is going to go, but I don't think I can put myself through it. Maybe I'll skim the rest. But I somehow doubt it.

Thanks to the publisher for an advance reader's copy.

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