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The Brim Reaper (Style & Error Mystery #3)
Diane Vallere


Travesty - Margie Shepherd "Travesty" not only describes the situation that Margaret Shepherd found herself confronting but it is an appropriate term for this book in general. I have not had such a difficult time finishing a book in a very long time. The overwhelming amount of errors were insufferable and it was incredibly difficult to find any motivation to read this book.

All throughout the book there are punctuation errors such as ending a sentence with ,. or placing a period in the middle of the month when writing out a date (such as Sept.ember 1, 2005). There are misspellings, comma splices, double negatives, typos, grammatical errors, and other errors from opening paragraph all the way through to the final chapter. It is very distracting and I had a hard time focusing on Margie's story. It feels as though this book was written while the author was under anesthesia and then was never reviewed by an editor. I do not blame the author for these errors as much as I would blame her editor. How does a publishing company (Trafford Publishing) allow a book to be printed with so many glaring mistakes?

The flow of the story was also very choppy. In one chapter Margie is awaking in her hotel room and discovering that she has been the victim of a thieving nurse and in the next chapter she is two years old and living in Ocoee, FL. The chapters are constantly flipping from one phase of her life to another and there is no continuity. It is difficult to follow at times. I read through Chapter 12 which ends with Margie leaving her first husband however in the beginning of Chapter 13 Margie mentions the tragic death of her husband. It was awkward to go from reading about her leaving a husband to reading about the tragic death of a man we have yet to be introduced to as a character in her life.

I hate to be negative about a book and I especially hate to be negative about a book that has such an important story to tell. What happened to Margie Shepherd was horrible and she deserved to have had justice served on those that were responsible however her story was poorly written and poorly edited. This story would be so much better if there was no mention of her childhood or young life at all. Her early life is completely irrelevant to the story and serves only as a distraction. I do not understand why so many author's feel as though the reader needs to know about their life when they were five years old, or twelve years old, or eighteen years old. This book is about a woman who was robbed by a person who was supposed to be caring for her post-surgery. There is no need for a detailed history of her childhood and it was even more annoying to read about it when one of the cities she lived in as a child was misspelled. It is Al"T"amonte Springs, FL not Alamonte Springs, FL.

In addition to the grammatical errors, the spelling errors, and other miscellaneous errors as well as the choppy timeline Margie's anger is overwhelming. The bitterness of her attitude is dripping throughout the book and her rage is more than apparent. I actually found the bitterness and rage to be so powerful that it detracted from her being a sympathetic character. Obviously, I did not love this book however I do understand the importance of Margie's story. If nothing else her story serves as a strong reminder that horrible things can, and do, happen.