Home/Tag: characterization

Patience Required / Patience Rewarded Editorial Analysis of Troubled Blood by Robert Galbraith

If you’re a fan of JK Rowling writing as Robert Galbraith, you’re probably well aware how much longer her latest release is than the other four books in the series.

My own first reaction to the size of the hefty tome—darn near 1,000 pages in hardcover—was mostly: Terrific! More of a good thing to look forward to. 

But I must confess to some trepidation as well. For me, one of the appeals of the mystery genre is […]

By |2021-05-11T16:15:08+00:00|Mystery, Mystery / Suspense, RSB, The Writer’s Craft|Comments Off on Patience Required / Patience Rewarded Editorial Analysis of Troubled Blood by Robert Galbraith

CASINO ROYALE, by Ian Fleming: A Most Pleasant Surprise Considering thriller craft and the delights of the unexpected in the first James Bond novel

Up until last week, one notable blind spot in my reading life was Ian Fleming’s James Bond series. I loved the movies of the Sean Connery and Roger Moore era but, unimpressed by a later book in the series (written by one of four authors who took the helm after Fleming died), decided that Bond was a character best enjoyed on the screen. It was the somewhat formulaic nature of the stories and lack of character depth in […]

By |2021-05-11T17:04:29+00:00|Book Reviews and Analysis, RSB, The Writer’s Craft, Thriller|Comments Off on CASINO ROYALE, by Ian Fleming: A Most Pleasant Surprise Considering thriller craft and the delights of the unexpected in the first James Bond novel

Editorial Analysis: WRECKED by Joe Ide Considering the pros and cons of irredeemable antagonists in crime fiction

I’m not exaggerating when I say the discovery of Joe Ide’s IQ series made an often-awful 2020 more bearable. Wrecked is the third book in this series starring the fiercely intelligent but lonely and isolated Isaiah Quintabe (“IQ”), who on first glance might resemble a modern-day Sherlock Holmes of Long Beach. In this story, Isaiah and his sidekick Dodson (kinda rhymes with Watson, doesn’t it?) help a reclusive artist find her long-lost mother and escape the wrath of five former soldiers determined […]

By |2021-02-24T16:02:31+00:00|Behind The Bestsellers, Mystery / Suspense, Recommended Reading, RSB, The Writer’s Craft|Comments Off on Editorial Analysis: WRECKED by Joe Ide Considering the pros and cons of irredeemable antagonists in crime fiction

Editorial Analysis: WATCHERS by Dean Koontz Considering deft handling of extreme character arc and a unique characterization challenge in the author’s best-loved novel

Dean Koontz is a very funny guy who while contemplating his future as a geriatric (bunny slippers are involved) says he expects to feel then as he does now: that Watchers is the most satisfying book he’s ever written. He also believes many readers will think it to be his best, no matter how good any other books he has written—or will write in the future—may be.

The editor in me can’t help wondering what’s so special about this story to an […]

By |2020-09-30T18:10:39+00:00|Behind The Bestsellers, Book Reviews and Analysis, General, Mystery / Suspense, RSB, TED Editor Posts, The Writer’s Craft|Comments Off on Editorial Analysis: WATCHERS by Dean Koontz Considering deft handling of extreme character arc and a unique characterization challenge in the author’s best-loved novel

Cultivating Willing Suspension of Disbelief in Crime Fiction Tips and techniques based on two hit novels by Stephen King and Alexandra Sokoloff

A recent article in The New Yorker defines the willing suspension of disbelief as “the reader’s decision to put the argumentative, quibbling part of his mind into neutral and go along for the narrative ride.”

Stephen King is a master at this, and I’m sure I’m not alone in admiring how easy he makes it to engage us with his novels’ supernatural, paranormal, magical, or mystical elements even if we take some comfort in the belief that these things surely can’t exist.  […]

By |2021-02-02T18:59:56+00:00|Behind The Bestsellers, Book Reviews and Analysis, General, Mystery / Suspense, RSB, TED Editor Posts, The Writer’s Craft|Comments Off on Cultivating Willing Suspension of Disbelief in Crime Fiction Tips and techniques based on two hit novels by Stephen King and Alexandra Sokoloff

Editorial Analysis: BLUE MOON by Lee Child Considering what works and what could work better in Jack Reacher # 24

Author’s note: As a reader, I’m a loyal fan of the Jack Reacher series, awaiting each release with rabid anticipation. As a professional editor, I’m a longtime admirer of what Lee Child does well and, at times, a constructive critic of what I believe he could do better. I write about Lee Child often because I love his work and think there’s a lot to be learned from him. His fall 2019 release Blue Moon has given me plenty to […]

By |2020-06-16T17:33:07+00:00|Behind The Bestsellers, Book Reviews and Analysis, General, Mystery / Suspense, RSB, TED Editor Posts, The Writer’s Craft|Comments Off on Editorial Analysis: BLUE MOON by Lee Child Considering what works and what could work better in Jack Reacher # 24