Tuesday, August 27, 2013

The Enforcer: A Review (This Will Contain Minor Spoilers)

Warning: Some Spoilers Revealed


 I wanted to like this story. It was about an ATF agent who was on assignment in Wild, Wonderful, West Virginia and a beautiful doctor who suffered from PTSD. I have a soft spot for soldiers, so I was already primed to love it. But between the reactionary political agenda and the complete lack of editing and poor formatting, I just found myself wishing that the book was over. I don't know if a good edit would save it (an actual editor is listed on Amazon) or if it is not salvageable. But I am sad to say, this is my first negative review.

Originality: ★★★★☆

The plot was definitely original. But not in a way that left me feeling comfortable. Dylan is a reactionary with PTSD, which in my mind is a very serious and not at all appropriate character to have. Having family members who have been through WWII, Vietnam, and have either come back with PTSD of some form, or not come back at all, I found it so be unrealistic. The way she describes the illness, the use of a camp to bring all those with some sort of combat wear together. It is unsettling. I can't connect with a character that I feel is a danger to society, especially because she is not exactly therapy or med compliant. I applaud her trying to tackle such a difficult (and often ignored or trivialized subject) but I can't help but feel like it wasn't given the depth that it deserves. 

Character Development: ★☆☆☆☆

I hated the tropes that were used to communicate between the characters. Tobias was reduced to shirt sayings. It wasn't really that funny, it didn't communicate anything amazing to the plot and it just seemed like a cheap gimmick. It rubbed me the wrong way, every time. And that was a lot of the time, because it seemed like at least twice a chapter he wore some cliche on his chest.

I have already outlined the poor character development of Dylan, the heroine of the story, so I won't go into much more detail. But I will say that from what I saw of her behavior, it is hard to suspend disbelief enough to actually buy that she is a doctor who is allowed to work. 

Editing: ☆☆☆☆☆

This fell apart for me in so many ways. The .mobi file was horrendous. I don't know how anyone could read that straight through. Almostevery other sentencelooked justlikethis. There were no spaces between chapters, no page breaks. If you have an editor and if you are being published by a "press" (that I couldn't find online, by the way. James-York Press was not on the first page of results when googled). The you need to make sure to look at your .epubs and .mobis before you give them out. Especially when I'm not using some downloadable software to view it on my computer, I'm using my Kindle. 

There were several themes and tropes that needed to be avoided and a good editor could have steered this author in the right direction and turned something that was too reactionary and too upsetting into a controversial yet beautiful and artistic piece. 

The Sex: ★★☆☆☆

Dull. Boring, even. The lack of actual tension between the two individuals and the fighting that didn't really translate into sexual energy, at least not for me, made it supremely difficult to get into the sex. 

Veronica Hardy is a professional editor and author who enjoys writing reviews in her spare time, for fun. She is not compensated by authors, publishers or online retail markets for her opinions. If you are interested in a book review or editing services please email her at Veronica.R.Hardy@gmail.com.