28 January 2011

Friday Ramblings: Why I Did Not Finish Shadowfever by Karen Marie Moning

Before I go immediately into why I didn't finish SHADOWFEVER, let me give you a little background.

I have been a fan of Karen Marie Moning since she published her first book back in 1999. I had just left the military and had moved to the Atlanta area. Karen Marie Moning's Agent Deidre Knight lived in the Atlanta area and at the time there was a lot of buzz about Karen and her work. Out of curiosity, I brought her first release and loved it. You must remember this was pre-Twilight and even pre-Harry Potter. I think at the time only the first Harry Potter book had been published. Of course, there were other authors who wrote paranormal, but what Ms. Moning had done at the time (a historical, paranormal romance) was unique and I loved her books. You also must remember that during this time publishers were culling their authors from publication rolls, so a lot of mid list historical romance authors were being cut by their publishers, leaving the rumor in romanceland that historical romance was dead. At the time romanceland was freaking out about that and I remember a lot of authors had to adjust their thinking to stay afloat in the business. A lot of authors switched genres to keep their careers afloat. And around all this drama, Karen released her first novel and it was a success.

I also think that it's important for some of her newer readers to understand that Ms. Moning was a New York Times Bestselling Author with a very extensive fan base long before the FaeFever series was released, and I was one of those readers who had read her stuff from her first book, and went to the bookstore on release day to buy her books. Even when she first went to hard cover, I still ran to the store to buy her latest release.

Since Karen Marie Moning was one of my favorite romance authors, I was a frequent visitor to her web-site. Prior to the release of Darkfever she had warned her readers that this series was going to be totally different from what she had been writing in the past. Yet, when Darkfever was released, I remember seeing how many people were disappointed that it wasn't a traditional romance. I myself, even though I didn't have a blog and didn't review at the time, went on Amazon where people were giving Darkfever bad reviews and blasted those people for being annoyed that Darkfever wasn't what they had been expecting. I mean come on, didn't they pay attention to her endless warning telling them that this was different? While I was disappointed in that first book didn't have a resolution and a complete lack of romance (I thought Barrons was an ass from the moment he appeared on the page, and I still don't get you guys fascination with him), I was such a fan of Karen's that I was willing to trust her to take me on the journey.

I must admit that I got bored with that journey after the second book and nothing looked like it was going to be resolved any time soon. Karen Marie Moning went from becoming a must buy author to me, to an author whose books I picked up at my local library. While I liked where she was going with the world building, I am a romance reader at heart and I read romance for the . . . romance. So at that time I decided to read her books because I was curious about Mac's journey and because in the back of my mind I was hoping that the Kelter's would make a prominent appearance.

Of course, during this timeframe, Harry Potter saved Hogwarts and Bella gave birth to the exorcist baby so a lot of those adult readers transitioned over to the romance genre, (This is me waving . . . welcome!) and began devouring paranormal and urban fantasy romance. However, you come with a lot of baggage. You are so used to seeing your heroes behave like abusive pricks (cough, cough Edward Cullen) that you don't seem to mind that Barron's is a complete and total bonehead (but he's sexy . . . I can hear you guys screaming in my ear). This is me rolling my eyes.

Umm, sorry about that, I totally couldn't resist throwing that in there. My bad. Back to my post.

So now, SHADOWFEVER has released. I'm on twitter seeing all the tweets, people have called off from work to read the book. They are all gaga and excited. It's the best thing ever. And I'm thinking, well I'm glad their happy. Meanwhile, I see that my library actually has SHADOWFEVER and since I was the first to put a hold on it, it's actually waiting for me at the library on release day. So I go to the library, pick it up, and sit it on my dining room table and think, 'am I really in the mood to read this right now?' Not really.

SHADOWFEVER sits on that table for a couple days. I pick it up Friday after work and start reading through it. And I'm like, really. I keep reading. I'm not interested. I keep reading. I see my kids playing around. Hmm. I'm so not interested in this book. Before when Barrons always got on my nerves, I still liked Mac, but now, Mac is getting on my nerves and does Karen have to waste so many pages with Mac's never ending whiny, boring, internal dialogue? Umm, I'm thinking when I'm reading when is something going to happen. This is boring, I think. I just don't want to be inside Mac's head anymore. I get on Twitter, and say really guys, you've been saying this is the best book ever? You didn't mind the endless internal monologue? The response I get is, well, I kinda skimmed through those parts. But, I say, you gave this book the highest reviews? How can you give a book such a high review when you skimmed the pages? To me a high review is that you were riveted by each word on the page, that you were transported, that you wanted to ignore your kids running around the house playing because you couldn't take your eyes away from the book? So, how can you give a book a high review that you skimmed over? Really? The response I get is, Lynette, you're so funny! Okay, I guess, I'm funny like that. So, I get off Twitter, I put down the book, and play with my kids. And I haven't picked the book back up and I have absolutely no interest in doing so. So, SHADOWFEVER is going back to the library unfinished.

And that's my SHADOWFEVER story.

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15 people posted their 2 cents:

tori aka ggs_closet said...

I'm going to be honest here. I may have marked Shadowfever read but I have not finished it.It wore me out. I can't get through the emo prose I find in this book. Mac's endless diatribe is, in my opinion, boring and drags the story down. I will eventually finish this but not right now.

Anonymous said...

I AGREE! I skimmed through half the damn book. Just like I did the previous books. I let the excitement get to me and went and bought it and now Im like..yeah waste of my money *sigh* Im not even writing a review.

I did find Barrons sexy and pretty much the only parts of the books I liked were ones with him in it. I like abusive men? HAHA

Lynette said...

I'm so proud of you for coming out the closet so to speak! LOL!

I'm worried about your fascination with abusive men? Shall I call a counselor? LOL!

Marq said...

I knew that there would be slow parts in this book. It's 600+ pages. I would have been shocked if the plot didn't stall. I thought there were parts in every book of the series where the plot stalled a little. And Mac's emo prose (great Tori!) was annoying and did bog down the book. But none of that ruined the book for me. A book doesn't have to be perfect for me to give it a 5. If it has me completely engrossed and engaged to the point where I ignore LIFE, then that's a FIVER for me. I read SF in a day and when I finished, I wanted to read it again.

Lynette said...

I respectfully disagree. I've read large books where I didn't find the plots dragging. I'm glad you loved Shadowfever, but it just didn't do it for me and didn't engross me like it did for you. I'm truly glad that you loved it, but understand why I didn't. I frankly thought that Karen is a much better writer than that. I can't help but wonder if she was under pressure to make the book that long?

tori aka ggs_closet said...

*sigh* Must be confession day. I also read the last 10 pages first so I would know what happened. I'm a little ashamed of myself. :(

KMont said...

I'm actually quite glad that someone's who's not impressed by this book is speaking up. I've been on the fence about reading it (like you, I read all her previous romances years ago, and all the Fever books prior to this one), but I'm glad to read some differing opinions in the realm of this isn't the end-all be-all. I AM glad if others enjoy it, but I totally get why you don't.

Barrons is an ass. Mac got severely annoying (the free chapter excerpts confirmed this was only going to continue/get worse in SF). There's filler like I can't believe in these books. I could go on, but point is, I do agree w/you.

Marq said...

I can't remember I read a 600 page book. College maybe? So of course it wasnt' for pleasure. LOL! I don't think KMM was pressured to make it that long. I remember her saying that that's how the book came to her. That's why the release date was pushed back. When I first heard how long the book was going to be, my first thought was "uh oh. that might not be a good thing."

Blodeuedd said...

Great post :) Everyone can't love a book. I am gonna try book 1, but not I do fear it cos Barron sounds like a total ass, I do not like idiots

Lynette said...

LOL. I totally did the same thing. I had a Dallas moment and thought "what do you mean, mean Bobby wasn't dead and this was all a dream?" reference the book.

Thank you so much. I've been feeling like a lone wolf. LOL!

A really long book that I remember devouring at the time were Diana Galbandon's (spelling) first couple books in the Outlander series. I haven't finished the series (I didn't like the later ones) but I loved the first three or four and they're huge book!

Don't let me deter you. You might like him. I judt couldn't. His actions made any sexiness on his part void.

KB/KT Grant said...

I have nicknamed Barrons Le Douche. He's the most underdeveloped asshat of a character that I ever read.

How I wish Mac would have dropped him and gone off into the sunset alone. I think she's staying with him because of his bookstore and hot cars.

Patti (Book Addict) said...

Awww, I'm sorry you hated it. I'm in the "loved it" category. It gave me everything I wanted and left me wanting Dani's story (she was my least fav character until this book) and Christian's story (have loved Christian since he stepped onto the page). I am excited that KMM is thinking of doing one more Highlander story - I really enjoyed those too!

Lynette said...

I saw you're post! LOL. I loved it. I wish I had seen yours before I did mine.

I just couldn't do it. I tried but I took it back to the library today. Maybe I'll try to read it again later after the furor dies down.

SarahT said...

I thought 'Shadowfever' was meh. The beginning dragged and there were too many unanswered questions at the end. Plus Dani's constant references to candy drove me nuts. (I'm Irish -- we don't use the word candy.)

BethScharwath said...

Ok, so like I got the first one as a free download and I TRIED REALLY HARD to read it and I thought maybe there was something wrong with me....THANK YOU! You have saved me years of group therapy and self loathing cause I thought I was crazy. But then I never really understood the entire Twilight craze either...I'm not on Team Jacob or Team Edward....call me nuts, but I'm on team Charlie. Now, Charlie, needs a book (Maybe I'm just old)

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