Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Book Review: Not Everything Brainless is Dead

Not Everything Brainless is Dead
By Joshua Price

The title of this book proclaims hope for the book itself.  If not everything brainless is dead, this book may still be alive.  I'm not sure that's a good thing, though.

I really try to be nice in my reviews.  I do.  But I think that the ready ability to self-publish that is available these days is not always a good thing.  I think it's great for able, fresh, young authors trying to break into the scene.  But it also means that people who have been turned down by publishers for good reason, or worse yet- haven't even tried that route- can still get their books out there.  When looking for good reading material from new authors, there is a lot of. . . uh. . . well. . . brainless stuff to weed through.

Since I always try to be nice in my reviews, I will say something nice about this book before I give the main gist of my review.  This guy is clearly funny.  Seriously, honestly funny.  I laughed before I even started reading the actual book.  The title and dedication pages are actually pretty funny.  And the first paragraph is pretty fun.  He's got good energy and is very quirky.  I like his cadence.  Also, the book includes superheroes, super villains and zombies.  I love to hate zombies.  Zombies make for good stories.  Usually.

When I read the phrase, "Metric shit-ton," I began to think that I might be in trouble with this one.  After that, there was the rampant failure to stay in the same tense.  Is it happening now?  Did it already happen?  Past or present tense: they tell us in third or fourth grade at the latest to pick one and stick with it.  They also tell us to have someone proofread and/or edit our work for us.  These are all great pieces of advice that should be heeded when writing any book.  It doesn't matter how funny you are if you can't adhere to basic grammar guidelines.  Yes, yes.  There are times when it's appropriate to bend the rules for literary effect.  This was not one of those times.  It read like an excited 9 year old boy trying to relay what happened in the latest Batman movie.

I don't even need to get to character development or plot structure or anything to tell you this book is far less than stellar.  None of that matters if it's just not well written from a basic English language standpoint. I hate that I have to give this book a less-than-mediocre review.  I am sure the author book a great deal of effort into this book.  Far more than I plan on putting into my cliche-riddled-going-to-write-it-just-for-a-few-dollars half-assed fantasy novel.  But it wasn't enough.  Please, spare yourself and value your reading time.  Pass on this one.

To comply with new regulations introduced by the Federal Trade Commission, I need to mention that the author, through librarything.com member giveaways has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book.


  1. Thanks for the review! I'm sorry it wasn't your cup of tea.

  2. I'm sorry too. I really wanted to love it when I was laughing before I'd actually started the story.

    I will say that I love how wonderfully kind all the writers I've reviewed have been- even the ones I review unfavorably.

    Best of luck with your work!

  3. Oh, no hard feelings!

    I will say the tense shifts at the beginning of the book were intentional, but I can see now that maybe I should go back and change it around.

  4. Michael Edmonds7:11 PM

    "I am sure the author book a great deal of effort into this book."

  5. Ha ha ha ha ha. Clearly more effort than I put into that sentence. That's what I get for trying to proofread when the kids are awake.