Sharon's Reviews > The Flaw in the Fabric

The Flaw in the Fabric by Jim T. Lindsey
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Aug 18, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: e-books, global-ebook-awards
Read from February 17 to 22, 2012

Overall score: 3.5/5 stars.

Jim Lindsey's "The Flaw in the Fabric" was presented to me as historical fiction. Let's just say, right up front, that it is not. It's a modern-day paranormal thriller.

His protagonist, Raymond Kidd, is a Buddhist living in a village near Halifax, Nova Scotia. Kidd periodically has dreams that he is another man, living in the same village in the 19th Century. He is a reenactor who plays a character from that time period, and is somewhat down on his luck.

Kidd eventually discovers that there are two ghosts (or, as they prefer to be called, lost souls) living in the basement of his home -- which is where they lived when they were alive. They need Raymond's help to get out of "the in-between," which is a real-world sort of purgatory.

Thus begins a book that could only be described as confusing at times. Point of view changes from character to character without much warning, which sent me back to re-read several sections as I tried to puzzle out where the author had gone with his tale. The characters were a little bit two-dimensional in some cases and, frankly, the 20 or so pages that took place during the 19th C. were more interesting to me than the 250+ that took place in modern times. I had a hard time connecting with the characters overall.

All of that said, the author's prose is quite eloquent. He draws images for us of the various locations that put you right into the action. I have to give him credit for knowing his craft in that regard. I just didn't like the characters enough to care what happened to them next in their lovely environment.

Congratulations to the author on his win at the Global eBook Awards.
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Reading Progress

02/18/2012
10.0%
02/21/2012 page 250
80.0% "This book was badly mischaracterized as historical fiction; all but about 20 pages thusfar have taken place in present day. It's a paranormal thriller ... and a good one. But it's not historical fiction."
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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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message 1: by Jim (last edited Jun 05, 2012 09:05PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jim Lindsey I'm Jim's publisher, Leigh Anne with SeaStorm Press in California, and I'd like to reply to your comment regarding "historical fiction." I am also the one who entered him in that Global eBook Awards for which, I gather, you judged the book.

We speak with editors, agents and publishers during the course of our business about what they thought the genre is. I'm a hearty reader and writer of suspense and futuristic thrillers myself. The Flaw we all discovered is hard to classify, a book that covers many borders.

The author still has a hard time classifying it. It is not this one thing or the other. But we had to choose one for Poynter's ebook award. I do wish there had been another category we could have chosen, but that was the only one left at the time.

We emailed quite a bit of material with the book, explaining how it was NOT just historical fiction. I wonder if you got all that material.

Anyway, a friend of mine and author of The Guinevere Trilogy (Persia Woolley) only enjoys reading hardcore historical fiction and just polished off her new manuscript on Ophelia. We debated back and forth if historical fiction should be part of what it was called. We could argue it both ways.

Many will argue that it is definitely historical fiction. Then others who say "historical suspense" or "historical paranormal suspense" though it's very literary so we call it that too. People even try to convince us it's Sci-Fi/Fantasy - well, it is fantasy in a way but it has nothing to do with dragons and mages and so forth. For the ebook award, we would like to have chosen suspense or the paranormal category but at the time they were not available to enter The Flaw.

The person that was herding up the judges contacted me back and asked if we would like it judged as 'paranormal thriller.' We agreed and told them to go ahead. But that's not how it ended up being judged or we both wouldn't be spending so much time discussing this point. I've not gotten around to asking about that for my life has been hell lately, but I would like to know.

In the end, in some ways it is part historical fiction, in others it's literary paranormal suspense, not a thriller. It's not a thriller (even we said for a time that it was) but we had to knock that down and go with "paranormal suspense", or "literary paranormal suspense." Oi!

See what I'm saying about narrowing some books down to a genre? Square peg in a round hole or Cinderella's shoe on one of her hag step sisters.

That's what makes this book unique and a joy to read however. The Flaw gives us that passage back to 19th century Halifax. It is near where Jim lives in Prospect. He moved to Nova Scotia over 30 years ago and has always been moved and curious by the history there.

For a time he played characters from the 19th century at one of the top tourists attractions in the city - Alexander Keith's Brewery. There Jim and others donned costumes and performed in theatrical representations of that time period.

For those hourly tours they had to have an immense amount of knowledge about that time era for curious visitors and tourists. Being immersed and steeped in the history and living in that very house on which the book is based is what possessed him to write The Flaw in the Fabric.

As for characters, there are many more pages than what you say there are. That comment so intrigues me that I'll have to go and re-read it again (for the umpteenth time), for you've piqued my interest!

Jim does know his craft. He's a Masters in Creative Writing and has written since elementary school in Texas. I've known Jim for a long, long time and have read a number of his works, from the massive amount of poetry he's written over the years to the newspaper articles he wrote when he was with The Dallas Morning News way back when....

If you'd like to email me, I'd be happy to speak with you more about Jim and his works. LeighAnne@SeaStormPress.com. You can reach the author directly at Jim@JimTLindsey.com.


Sharon Hi, LeighAnne and thank you for your comment (I did not come back to see it before now). By now, you know that this book won in the Speculative Fiction (Paranormal) category. While I concur that the book is hard to classify, that category actually made the most sense to me when I was asked (as a judge) how I felt about it. I enjoyed the book and congratulate Jim on his win.


Sharon PS -- I was not given any material other than the book itself.


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