'Rumors' has a lot going for it. A clearly defined main character, a plotline that sneaks up on you, and a satisfying sense of accomplishment.
Bill's character is well written, well defined. From the moment he wakes to the end of the story his actions are somewhat inconsistent, but it IS consistent with his internal motivations. The opening scenes with his wife and granddaughter set him up with the proper amount of regret and ennui about life we're going to need him to have for the rest of the story.
The article he receives feels something like a deus ex machina moment. There's no explanation at all for it. Maybe there isn't supposed to be (and I know it's part of the SS challenge) but since its' role in the beginning is pivotal in the end, I'd like to see some more time spent on it.
The climax of the story just seems to happen. His new passenger and he share very little in the way of information. I'd like to see that exchange run a bit longer, and maybe with a different version of Bill's character statement about having ruined their lives.
Now about all the words. :) Wheelema, we know you love your words, and why shouldn't you? How can writers not love words, hold them sacred. As surgeons treasure their scalpels, we must love our dictionaries. We must also learn to keep them as tools, surgeons cut to heal, we must write to convey. There are a few moments where the words, and the wordsmithing, pulled me out of the story and thought, "Gosh, he's really WRITING here." Examples:
-as they raced to the next inconsequential moment in their futile lives; too stupid to see the sledgehammer of the future waiting to smash their dreams into shards of glass and steel for them to walk on barefoot as punishment for the audacity of believing in love.
-They regarded each other through the pane of safety glass that was the point of demarcation between one man's fantasy and another man's reality.
-“I know her in a biblical sense.” - This one, I'd cut. Just saying I know her and having Bob answer the same way as in the story feels more satisfying.
-“All those people who care only for themselves. Look at me! I've become what I hate. I ruined her. I ruined our life. I just couldn't be happy with what I had, I had to look at what other's had and want that instead. I killed us, and I did it with my eyes wide open.” - There's got to be a better way of saying this without going right on the nose.
Over and above, though, you've treated me to a story I didn't want to stop reading. Plus, I read it because I couldn't put it down, not because it was assigned to me. That's somewhat rare here, so pat yourself on the back for me.
Review of: Rumors of Exigence
reviewed by krtshadow on 11/13/2008
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