Saturday, April 18, 2009

Wicked Weaves by Jim and Joyce Lavene

sigh It looks like my string of good authors has come to an end and I've embarked on a new set of authors/series to avoid. This is the first one I've made a note not to pick up again. In fact, I'm invoking the "avoid" tag on this one.

Jessie Morton attends the Renaissance Faire Village every summer to work as an apprentice for her dissertation on Renaissance crafts. This year, she's working with Mary Shift to get the lowdown on basket weaving at Wicked Weaves. Everything is going fine as Jessie keeps poking her fingers on the baskets and grumbling about tending customers and not learning much about the craft as she'd like. To add to her troubles, a dead man is found close by. Turns out to be Mary's ex-husband, Joshua, who she hasn't seen in over 20 years. She's not too shaken up by the death, even though she's the prime suspect. Jessie's more distraught than she is and more determined to find the killer. Further complicating her summer, she falls into a relationship with Chase Manhattan, even though he shares the lack of ambition with her twin brother, Tony. A lot of stupid things happen, the authors call them crazy, but it's just downright stupid. I don't know why I continued to read especially when I no longer cared if the killer was caught. I'm not sure what annoyed me more, Jessie's rambling (through the village and in her theories), finding out she's the wench of the summer, her and Chase's romantic encounters all over the village (TMI) or what. I just gave up trying to make sense of the book and now it's done and over with and I can forget I ever read this book and steer clear of this series. It's akin to having a cavity. It's not good, the dentist drilling is not good, but it is good when it's all over. Why did I continue to read it? I don't know; I lost control of my senses and plead insanity. Yeah, that works for me.

My brother-in-law and sister-in-law are twins; meaning, they were conceived at the same time, but not from the same egg. Many people know the difference between maternal and fraternal twins, however, the authors don't, especially because the narrator (female) keeps insisting the narrator's brother are split from the same egg. I'm surprised no one else in the printing of the book caught this or thought it was a cute family moment. I don't care. It's a major flaw in the book which I couldn't recover from.

At one point, one of the characters alludes to Jessie's annoying quality, calling her "scatterbrained." Jessie vehemently denies this fact and claims she's very well organized. Another lie! Jessie's so scatterbrained (so are the authors), one could use her brain as a mental obstacle course. She runs through theories, then backtracks them, especially when one calls her on the invalidity of her arguments, then she adopts those invalidities when someone else tries to use them. I believe this is referred to as brush out, a method used by people who pick up a branch and brush out the tracks so the person tracking doesn't know where the trail begins or ends. She also has awkward conversations at inappropriate times (such as her and Chase discussing their relationship while trying to sneak up on a potential killer). She also gives herself too much credit when she tries to repair the mother-son bond of Mary and Jah. Oh, I give up, on Jessie and the whole shebang.


L said...

I don't know it, sounds like instead of feeling better after the dentist visit your mouth still stings, and when you try to suck a drink out of a straw it drips down your mouth uncontrollably.

I hate that.
Sounds like that kind of a book.
Too bad.

Amanda said...

Identical twins of different genders? I wonder how they managed THAT. Sorry you got a bad book...

Christina said...

Lula, yeah, this book was like a trip to the dentist, it's only good because you know you don't have to back for that tooth (hopefully).

Amanda, I mentioned that to Paula and John and they got a kick out of it.

hamilcar barca said...

the one nice thing about finishing a bad book is that you have the right to blast it. it really didn't get any better by the last page.

i started a really horrid dittohead spy-thriller a couple months ago, and had to stop on page 80 or so. that's no small feat for an OCD reader. alas, not finishing it means i wasted a couple evenings of perfectly good quiet time, won't get to count it in my 5-Squared list, and wouldn't feel right even reviewing it. who knows? maybe it suddenly got good on page 81.