Editing Rant: H is for Humor Gone Wrong

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Editing Rant for a DNF book review


Ugh. Made it made it 4% into the book before giving up. (Famous science fiction author) may write good books, but this is not one of them. The title character is a whiner and the narrating (POV) character is a complainer and manipulator. I *think* the story is meant as a parody and to be humorous, but it is either slap-stick humor or … I don’t know what.

Gave up at “there are possibilities for the future. Perhaps even a new school!” … says a martial artist after his spine has been crushed. The humorous(?) statement is about developing a new school of fighting for paraplegics. … ha, ha?? Isn’t that a funny one-off joke? … why aren’t you laughing, reader?

By the time I embraced the concept of this book NEEDED to be a “do NOT finish” (and remember this is only 4% into the eBook), the VARIOUS slapstick-styled fights included permanently crippling a legbreaker (mentioned above), tearing the face off a law enforcement officer, removing an arm from one man and then beating four other people unconscious with it, and driving a mage insane. Nothing bloody or graphic; again these are slapstick fights. All the while during them the title character was whining about philosophy and the POV character was trying to get him to shut up by belittling him or bemoaning the fact of having to listen to said philosophy by breaking the fourth wall between the narrator and the reader.

So funny, not.


I know for some, the age of “political correctness” has gone too far. But remember, the best humor punches up, not down.

(Okay, I admit the tearing off an arm and beating other people with it COULD have been funny. I’ve seen similar things done in the humor-fantasy genre where I laughed hard, especially with zombies. And often it is with blood and all the graphic juices flying everywhere. This, though, was not one of those times where funny took off its shirt, let alone had a digit go flying and landing in a drink to give a person the finger for the hero(ine).)

(Did I see a smile there from the image of a zombie finger doing inappropriate things? See, how hard was that? Why couldn’t famous author pull it off? Not the finger, never pull a finger, that is a different gag.)

Don’t do bad humor.

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