Jeanette "Astute Crabbist"'s Reviews > The Sojourn

The Sojourn by Andrew Krivak
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's review
Nov 11, 2011

liked it
bookshelves: did-not-work-for-me
Read in January, 2012

When I looked back over my 2011 reading year, I found there were just too many times when I finished a book I wasn't enjoying simply because I'd gone so far into it that I figured I may as well push on to the end. For 2012 I've decided to change that. So, sorry to say, The Sojourn is the first victim of my new policy.

I read a little over half of the book. Were I to finish, I'd probably give it three stars. Andrew Krivak writes well and the plot has potential. But the more I read, the flatter it felt to me. Character development is minimal. In good fiction we learn a lot about the characters through what they say to each other and how they say it. The Sojourn is short on dialogue and heavy on exposition. And it happens to be my least favorite kind of expository writing -- paragraph-long, comma-laden sentences that leave me wondering what I just read.

Much of what I read seemed like a recitation of what the author gleaned in his research rather than a progression of plot. That probably sounds unfair, but I don't care to put any more time into explaining myself. For a balanced perspective, be sure to check out some of the more favorable reviews of the book.
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Comments (showing 1-10 of 10) (10 new)

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message 1: by Julie (new)

Julie Good plan, Jeanette. And good review.

This is such an interesting dilemma-discussion. There are so many books I know within pages are worth neither my time nor energy and I have no problem setting them aside. Then there are the not insignificant number that I have no problem reading to the end, yet they prove to be disappointments, some small, some great. Or just crap. I don't really have a point to make (don't laugh!), just an observation how interesting it is that some reads keep us despite their (obvious to us) faults, others we let drop like hot potatoes.

But I'm with you. Reading time is too precious to compromise.

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Thank you, Julie, and you should know I have to laugh just as soon as you say "don't laugh." :-)
I think I used to be better at ditching books I wasn't enjoying. The REALLY bad ones never even make it to my GR page. But this past year there were so many times when I'd find myself almost exactly halfway through a fairly short book (200-300 pages) that wasn't good enough to continue but wasn't quite bad enough to drop. Because they weren't too long I'd go ahead and finish and then regret wasting my time.

And then there's the part about feeling like I shouldn't criticize a book that has a lot of high ratings. Am I a party pooper? Nope, just honest.

message 3: by Suzanne (new)

Suzanne I have often plowed ahead with books that are disappointing, if they're not too long, wanting to finish them even if I'm not enjoying them. I think it might be because the eternal optimist in me hopes it will get better and the time I may have already wasted will be redeemed. That rarely happens, though. It's often better just to cut your losses.

message 4: by Jeanette (last edited Jan 15, 2012 09:07PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Yes, Suzanne, that's exactly what I mean. They have just enough promise to keep you pushing on. This is especially true for me if they start off well, because I keep hoping that initial oomph will reappear. It's that feeling of knowing it COULD improve that keeps me going far longer than I should.
And on that same note, this is why I would make a lousy novelist. I could come up with a doozy of a beginning, and then just fizzle after that.

S.L. I wholeheartedly agree with this review...I was tempted to give up on the book but did push through. I can't say I gained anything by sticking with it.

Linda I really liked the book. Gave it 4 stars!

Peter Sure, it is your right to stop reading some book, but then please don't judge. It is really hypocrity. Your problem is that you expect some kinf of book and you are not sensitive to this special one. There is no ideal book, you need to be considerate to any book. This book is great.

Anneke Agreed, Peter. Thanks.

Holly Heiberg murphy Felt the same about this book but decided to press through and glad I did. The last 1/3 of the book was very good.

Maine agree

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