The Review Board

Where Honesty Never Ends.

The Harmonious Unleashed Truth of Controversy on Phantasy

phantasyPhatasy by Marlowe Sr.
Amazon | Smashwords

Genre:  Fiction

Disclaimer:  Foul language may be seen due to quoting from dialogue that exists in the actual work.

Journey with The Review Board as we give a thorough examination of Phantasy by Marlowe Sr.  Please feel free to grab some refreshments.  First with her thoughts, we have Harmony Kent:

harmonykent
This is basically a story about a young man who is unhappy. He hates his job. He hates his life. He is angry and disillusioned. So, what does he do about it? He creates fantasies, of course. Oh, he is also lazy and self-centred.

Perhaps the clearest picture I can give about this book is to start by copying and pasting the last paragraph from the book blurb:

… “He has started created a world of his own, a world in which only HE can rule with full authority. But will he be able to finish what he’s started? More importantly, will he be able to taste success in his new venture?” …

The editing doesn’t get any better … it gets a lot worse. What this short example doesn’t show, is the sheer amount of exclamation points used throughout the whole book. So, here is a little excerpt from the author’s note at the very beginning of the book:

… “While reading this book, please remember that suspension of disbelief is a must! … [and] … The characters of this book are absolutely fictitious – bearing NO relation to any person, either living or dead! … [and] … Although this book is written in first person, the reader should assume that the author and the narrator are completely DIFFERENT individuals with NO relation to each other!!” …

Okay, ‘nough said.

Onto the story …

Source: augiedoggy.com

Source: augiedoggy.com

This is a looooong (and I mean LONG) book. Which isn’t usually a problem for me, because I love to read. But OMG … (sorry, I should use some exclamation points here) !!!!! There, that’s better. Oh, my, Goodness! If you like to read hundreds and hundreds of pages of italicised text, capitalised text, and exclamation points aplenty, then you’ll adore this book. Me? Not so much. Oh, and I forgot to … mention … the … sheer … number … of … ellipses !!!

Okay, okay … I’ll settle down now. I’m sure you get the gist. The main character is angry, and he stays angry throughout. The crazy chatter inside his head made me feel exhausted at times. The broken English, and general writing style took a lot of hard work and concentration to stay with. I couldn’t identify with the protagonist at all. He came across as lazy, self-centred and angry, with no inclination to take control of his own life, never mind responsibility for his actions. I would estimate the first quarter of the book (give or take) was full of whining, whining, and more whining. The narrative is in the style of a play, as in the following excerpt: “Me: ‘No, not me, hehe. You say as if everybody has got time to waste on boisterous hawkers like you!’

dictionary1Still can’t figure it out.

Hawker: ‘…If anyone else needs to have a look at it, let me know – I am still in this train. I would let one of these scorpions bite me now – RIGHT IN THIS COMPARTMENT, and then demonstrate the effectiveness of my medicine to you…if anyone needs a bottle better ask from me NOW!’” etc., etc. … (The ellipses inside the quote are all the authors, not mine.)

therapist-smiley-emoticon
By 91% of the way through, the rants were still going on. Honestly, I need therapy after wading through this. If I hadn’t been committed to reading and reviewing this particular novel, it would have been a definite DNF. It has nearly succeeded in putting me off books for life. Which is saying something, as books ARE my life.On the plus side, the author provides a great glossary of terms at the end of the book!

Harmony’s Verdict:

2outof10harmonygraphicI give this book one out of ten stars for sheer effort. It gets another one for imagination. But that’s as much as I’m willing to concede. If this was on ‘Britain’s Got Talent’, I reckon Simon would have stopped the show after the first two seconds. I’d be hitting the red ‘no’ button myself. So, in summary, not a book I feel I can recommend. Two out of ten stars using The Review Board’s system.

black-divider-hi

Next is the Unleashed One:

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Yes, normally I go last but figured I would give Mr. Controversy a bit more time to compose his thoughts.

Warning: Even though this may have spoilers, it doesn’t matter because the construction is a hodgepodge of horror.

When it comes to something being out the box, it tends to be something I gravitate towards. One of the main things I look for is something that is original yet entertaining. Although I was not originally assigned to this work, it had a few unorthodox qualities that warranted I at least give it a whirl.

I got whirled all right! Whirled into where I sought alcoholic solace, and I am not even a drinker. Usually I’m the DD (designated driver) while everyone else gets sloshed.

What’s Good About It?

Let’s set the pros out here now because there aren’t many.

• Out of the box attempt
• Glossary at the end of the book

**You will just have to find out later how much weight they have in my overall verdict.**

Cons: Grab some dinner and a drink for this one.  No, seriously.  I’ll wait.

The Reactivation of the Syntax Army

Well to start, I have to bring in my good old army.

General Great Read
In this situation, General Great Read has a rogue Exclamation Point Militia.

Ellipses EntourageEllipses Entourage

This rogue militia has joined forces with the Ellipses Entourage and both must be stopped.

Private PeriodPrivate Period

He has assigned Private Period to hunt them down and smoke them out.

Appearance wise, Phantasy is the most atrocious display of syntax I have ever witnessed. I swear, some of the punctuation was made up. Dashes with ellipses. Exclamation points with ellipses. Commas with ellipses. (You get the point.)

This author has a love affair with ellipses. Almost every sentence had them. In the majority of the cases, a period was needed instead of all of the ellipses. Did periods and commas do something to where this author decided he would swear them off forever? Did he think he could do something experimental and make the reader’s brain work overtime to decipher his Morse code of punctuation?

The Code: “Okay, any ellipses mean commas or periods. Exclamation points go wherever I feel they should go.”

This is what I feel like the author was saying to any one reading this. Only flaw is it takes away from any type of “pleasure” that could be gained from reading this because the brain is too busy doing visual substitutions.

I take my narrative light on the italics with little to no cap locks, please?

Punctuation was not the only thing haywire in Phantasy. There was a gross exaggeration of italics and capitalization. Either one is used for the purpose of emphasis and importance. Both used in the same sentence continuously is overkill. The author would do much better just picking certain words or phrases to give spotlight to as opposed to big blocks of caps and italics.

Although the author claims the italics were to separate the narrator’s secret thoughts from spoken thoughts, in many places it caused way too much confusion and the lines between the two became blurred very often—within the same context numerous times. It would have been better to use a different method (utilization of spacing or even a different font) to make this separation clearer.

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Spell check where art thou?

There were sprinkles of spelling errors in this work. I will just point out three (but there were a few more as well) for examples:

“…she keeps telling to the tenants that if they don’t handle the tube well ‘properly’ it would not last long and she would have to pay a heavy rice to get it fixed as before…” (should be “price”)

“For every fucking scent I spend I have to give a valid reason to mom…” (should be “cent”)

“Thank you for joining men…” (should be “me”)

The chaos does not stop here dear readers.

from biochemistx.wordpress.com

from biochemistx.wordpress.com

Must you repeat that?

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One characteristic of this work was that phrases were repeated. Sometimes, it was the same phrase but with different wording. Other times, it was the exact same phrase usually in the same block of dialogue.

At times, writers tend to use repetition to drive a point home but not in the sense where it serves no purpose except to give agitation to the supporting characters as well as the person reading it.

Let’s do the Time Warp…not again!

I do not mind a book having flashbacks. Yet the flashbacks have to make sense. It’s like trying to find your keys and retracing your steps. You usually go to the places where they were last spotted NOT to locations where you haven’t been in years or to a country you’ve never visited.

The never ending stream of flashbacks felt like that. By the time you gain a sense of accomplishment from figuring out the destination, the next segment scrambles your equilibrium all over again. Story compass is damaged beyond repair, and you’re stuck between the Quicksand of Mediocrity and the Cesspool of What’s the Point.

The Haven of Hatred: Character Speak

You ever hear the phrase “the character you love to hate”. But you still love the character because he was made to be hated. Well, you won’t find that here. All of the major characters in this work I hated because they were annoying and they didn’t have proper names (which I’ll speak on later). None of the characters exhibited any growth in one way or another. The narrator’s Mom (aka Connoisseur of Complaints and Chaos) stayed cranky and argumentative without any real glimpse as to why she’s cranky and argumentative. The narrator’s Dad (aka Balls Serrated After Wedding Vows) stayed passive aggressive without any motion to rise to get out of his situation.

The narrator needs his own separate paragraph. I won’t call him Marlowe, since in the author’s notes; the author insists he and this character are two separate entities. Yet I must call him something because his lack of name irks me.

I now crown him “Dick” (short for Richard but also sums up how the narrator was acting throughout this work).

Dick, at first, presents himself as this misunderstood person who’s fighting for the right to his own life and has a dream of putting out his first book. Yet that initial analysis is quickly spit on by the countless tirades and the irrationality of how he acts in situations. Dick’s hissy fits at every turn solidifies the personification of him being a brat with a sense of entitlement—a lazy excuse of skin and bones.

Side Note 1: I’m sorry. Destitution does not mean lack of the latest gadgetry.

Quote from Phantasy: “I have neither a laptop nor an iPod! I am really DESTITUTE! We- ALL THE THREE-ARE IMPOVERISHED!”

Side Note 2: Before people jump on the whole generational difference component (the narrator is in his twenties), I know bratitude (yeah I made it up) and lazy behavior does not discriminate. I don’t want to start on that whole debate on what generation does what because it will detract from the review.

Dick is all inclusive in the realm of disrespect—to restaurant workers, to homeless people on the street, to the pharmacist, even his own mother. Dick has no respect for women and thinks that he’s justified for hating and punishing them: in his mind and on paper. Yet the real reason stems from his lack of approach and his own self loathing. There’s a lot of reference to them being “bitches” and what he would do to them if they’d just agree to be with him (aka “fuck”) and marry him. Three prime examples of his condescending attitude were reflected in some of these lines in Phantasy:

“…Now if…maybe…if this black woman takes to prostitution she would sure be earning WAYYYYY more than she could by begging-but I doubt she would-I guess her superficial morals are too high for that-“

“Cooking ain’t a man’s job- it is a WOMAN’s job after all- and also why should I help a bitch like you anyway- I just don’t feel like helping you at all…coz you are so…BAD- INSIDE AND OUT!…”

“-just about ANYONE these days allege rape…do they even KNOW what a rape is at all?? Some beautiful chick wearing skimpy bare minimals walking the street with an arrogant gait-now if SHE gets raped, you’d believe it, ‘I’d believe it…it all sounds plausible if someone like her gets hit on- she had it coming…but…this ugly woman?? SHE got raped? NONSENSE! So ugly that she’d make me run for the hills rather, ha ha…she’s even uglier than a street dog- who the hell would bother to rape her?”

Dick shows no admittance, apologies or advancement in any aspect to his approach to anything or anybody. He demonstrates a total detachment from his own reality. His lunacy damn near drove me to want to get drunk.

drunksmiley
If I were any character in this book and had to deal with this foul stench of secretion, this book wouldn’t have even been that long because Dick would have “mysteriously” disappeared. Perhaps consumed by the “seemingly indestructible monster” that was in the book he was working on.

Needless to say, connectivity with any character is lacking.

The main with no name (Main Characters that is)

In most writes, the main characters in the work have names. In Phatasy, the ones that have proper names are the supplemental characters who play little to no role besides someone for the narrator to spar back and forth with. Even if they are talking to each other, not once is the narrator referred to by his actual name.

Also when Mom and Dad are fighting (which they do throughout this lengthy work), neither one of them address each other by their first names. Trading barbs back and forth in dialogue, that is highly unusual. Even when they address the narrator, they never mention his name.

The reason why the absence of proper names bothers me is because it is an indicator as to how well one can keep up with the dialogue. This is particularly helpful when the author switches from screenplay style to when the main character is working on the manuscript for Phantasy. In the manuscript itself, my brain almost hurt as I had to re-read certain lines over again to ensure which character was saying which thing.

Decide Your Style

Phantasy’s composition was like a screenplay with a wispy thread of a plot attached to it. Why else would a person write the dialogue like this:

Mom: I told you to wash the dishes today!
Me: Hold your horses! I just got up.

As opposed to this:

Anger flickered in my mom’s eyes. She screamed, “Dick I told you to wash the dishes today!”
“Mom, hold your horses! I just got up.”

It would have been easier for the author just to make a decision on whether to write this as a full novel or write this as a full screenplay. If he wanted to do a hybrid, then he should have ascertained the reader’s visual capacity at it pertained to proper (as opposed to imaginary) methods of syntax as well as sufficient white spacing in this work.

With its current anatomy, there is absolutely no unity in any of the thoughts. Not just with the dialogue but also in the actual manuscript Dick (the narrator) is composing. A pregnant ghost and an archangel are brought up but one has no clue as to what occurs with them next. There’s also an unexplained time warp and conflict thrown in the story that mimics B grade movies.

umwhat
WTF Moments?

Yes, the schizophrenic tendencies of Phantasy become even greater and more outlandish. It addresses two points:

1. How can one get reviews on a manuscript that isn’t even completed?

Woman reader (posts a review of my Phantasy novel on Amazon.com): “This is the most PATHETIC novel I have ever read…DISGUSTING is the word!”

Yet in the next chapter, it is revealed he is still writing the SAME work he got a review on.

2. Why in the name of body wash and toothpaste would you put in this line?

“I think I must now start writing fake reviews for my own sake to pull in visitors-coz I’m not getting any real ones from anybody, so?…Can’t let my ambition die such a natural death! I CAN’T! MUST DO FAKE REVIEWS NOW!…”

boyconfused
Um…what?

I had to do a double take just to make sure I read it. Yes the line was still in there. Is it a joke or is the author and narrator line a bit too blurred here? Just to give you guys something to think about.

Summary of Suggested Improvements:

Less is More: One can use emphasis without going overboard. Tone down on capitalization, italics, exclamation points, dashes and ellipses.

Single and ready to mingle!
Use punctuation properly: In way too many parts of the book ellipses, exclamation points, commas and dashes were used when periods would have done the trick.

More balance with setting vs. dialogue: There was not enough detail in the settings to counteract the over surge of dialogue.

Show rather than tell: There was no set plot and too much dependence on the narrator’s thoughts and feelings. This made it hard to get into the book. Even being out the box has levels of methodology to the madness.

Firmness in flashbacks: Either have an adjoining thread to the flashbacks or cut down on them, particularly the flashbacks within flashbacks.

Page count decrease: Due to so many different elements being present in this work, perhaps dividing it up into miniseries would have gone smoother. One segment: being about the narrator’s work and how he lost his first job. The second segment could focus on his conflict with his family. There’s just way too much going on to cover in just one book.

Name the central character: It provides (1) importance and (2) ease of tracking.

Provide a resolution: No part of Phantasy (the screenplay segments or the manuscript segments) gave any conclusion to anything. Think guy walking around with his fly open but no one ever telling him about it. As long as this work is (well over 200 pages) it was still full of the spunk of incompleteness.

Inserting slang terminology into glossary: There’s a word Dick (the narrator) has constantly used in the work, the word “hawker”. Yet in the glossary section, everything else gets a definition instead of that one and the dialogue provides no clear context clues to decipher the meaning.

proofreading

Revamping of the Author’s Note: It is not a good move to alienate a potential reader just before he/she reads your work (i.e. “…only people with brains should read it”). Helpful disclaimer is one thing: hurling insults before turning the page to the first chapter is another.

Unleashed Verdict: Now back to the pros I mentioned earlier and how many points I’m willing to give.

  • Out of the box attempt: 1 star
  • Glossary inclusion: ½ a star

Total stars: 1.5 out of 10 TRB Stars

I cannot recommend this read for all of the things mentioned earlier. Yet if you want tirades of complaining and randomness tossed together, you may see some beauty in this. Right now, I just want to fantasize that I didn’t read this and write a story about not reading this.

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Now circling back with her thoughts, Mini Truth:

February 2014 Author Spotlight: Y. Correa
I suppose it’s important to start this review with a few notes and disclaimers. They are as follows:

1) This book was submitted to The Review Board, an organization to which I belong, for an honest review. I offered to read it along with a group of colleagues and provide an honest review.

2) In all of my years, I’ve done LOTS of reading. I’ve read books of ALL kinds, both good and not so good. And while I’ve disliked some (mostly in recent years), I’ve never LOATHED a book like I have this one.

3) Among the genres and concepts that attract me the most are the ‘out of the box’ concepts; the different, obscure and seemingly crazy. Most books in that realm are simply misunderstood. A vast majority of them, something akin to the inner workings of the human mind—outrageous desires which remain unspoken until pen is put to paper.
Said things always draw my attention.
What I’m saying is that the main reason why I opted to give this book a try was because I gravitate more towards the unconventional.

4) There will be several instances of bad punctuation and grammar in the review as it serves the “show and tell” purpose.

All of the capitalized words, are my way of giving emphasis to the things you really need to understand, as I’m unable to bold and italicize certain things on Amazon and Goodreads.

Amazon, because they don’t allow it. Goodreads, because I haven’t capitalized on it as of yet, since I just recently got told how to do it.

5) There may be things repeated that the other reviewers have already pointed out.  However, I will still give them spotlight to demonstrate that more than one person has seen them.

***

All right, with those out of the way, I shall get to the bulk of my review now. Bear in mind, it will not be as long as the Unleashed One, as she has done a fantastic job in pointing out the ridiculously vast amount of downfalls of this read.

Truth be told, if I were to do what I usually do and give examples, you’ll be reading this review all day. Why? Because I’d have to copy and paste the entire book.
Although I intend on being short, fast and to the point, I cannot promise that I will be quick.

I must say this; it is FAR BEYOND my understanding WHY people would write rave reviews on this BLATANT P.O.S. (for those of you who do not know this acronym, it means Piece Of Shite)! Never IN MY LIFE, have I EVER seen such horrendous work, and I’ve read some doozies!
Now it is BAD when you read a book, and think to yourself, “Wow! I rather be reading that 1 star book that I read last month which was a train wreck.”

Prior to reading Phantasy I did some research, took a look at some reviews and such, and thought that while some people didn’t care for it much, another group seemed to fully enjoy it. So, I came to the conclusion that those people that didn’t like it might not have a full understanding of the premise, which is something that tends to happen with books such as this.
THEN I DIVED IN.
In no time at all—pages in to be exact—I knew this would be a read like no other, and NOT in a good way.
Without getting too in depth with the LONG LINE OF PITFALLS in this story as my partners have done that already, I’ll summarize what’s wrong with it in bullet form, as I usually do. I might even introduce some Side Notes if necessary.

Let’s start with the not-so-bad, bad things.

Side Note: This book is so bad that I could not so much as give it 1 Pro.

* THE WORST grammar and syntax I’ve EVER, EVER seen! People, I seriously mean it was heinous… lousy… ghastly… offensive even!!!!!!!

Side Note: The several ellipses and exclamation points are on purpose. They are a demonstration of the writing in this book. EVERY freaking sentence looked JUST LIKE THAT!

Good God All Mighty, save me from the punctuation!

This book- just- loves- its- dashes;… and unnecessary… punctuation/ (although-) they are… never used… properly!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

* Although this may not necessary be an all out truth, I can only tell you how I FELT. I am in no which way or form trying to insult the author. My reason for pointing the following out is to indicate how a female—particularly a woman of color—would feel after reading this book.

I kept thinking to myself, “This author is a misogynistic, sexist, cynical, pig!” There were way too many instances in which he referred to women as nothing more than bitches, as well as implied time after time that all women are good for is cooking, cleaning (due to main characters interactions with his mother) bitching and sex (due to his constant desire to have sex with every woman).

Side Note: Which begs the question, “Why had a woman of color done this testimonial of praise for Phantasy?” Because obviously all we are good for is laying on our backs—per the story of course.

I WAS INSULTED! CONTINUOUSLY!

* The MAIN CHARACTER remained nameless. Not once did I see the name for the main character. There are two problems with this.

  1. There’s absolutely no way the reader can bond with a character that has no name.
  2. What happens instead is that the reader will automatically put the authors name in its place, therefore assimilating the main character with the author. Which in this occasion IS NOT A GOOD IDEA as the main character is not likable at all.

Really bad Cons:

* There is NO RHYME OF REASON to the happenings in this story. NOTHING makes sense. Often times the author starts one thought and cuts it off completely—unfinished—and starts an entirely new thought.

* I still do not understand why minimal characters have names yet important characters did not.

* Make up your mind! Is it a novel or a screen play? Yet, no matter what style of writing it is, it was executed in a excruciatingly poor manner! I mean, just really, really, really bad.

pregnantghost

* Can someone please tell me what the fudge and chocolate is a pregnant ghost, or powerless Archangel? I mean really?

Now, something has to be said about this pregnant ghost. Personally I am a huge mythology, paranormal/supernatural buff. I know almost all there is to know about these subjects, and let me tell you something; this book is WAY off on both accounts in reference to the pregnant ghost and the weak Archangel.

1) Per paranormal myth, ghost can only BE pregnant, if they die pregnant, but the baby will never be born! What it really is, is that since the woman died pregnant, in the afterlife they still believe that they are, although, the child too has passed over and is its own ghost.

2) Per angel and demon mythology, Archangels are THE MOST POWERFUL angels in existence and can do just about anything that God can do. Each one has his/her own gift and on top of that they are beings of light. In said mythology the word “light” stands for enlightenment, which means that they KNOW everything.

In both instances—with the ghost and the angel—the author had it all wrong! If you’re going to write about something like that, do your research!

*Oh wait, how about a test-tube baby, monster that shoots fire balls for no apparent reason…?

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Don’t even get me started on this one! The basic idea is that this “monster” was created by two men, and is something like a dragon, but isn’t—it has some fire ball breathing abilities, and god knows what the hell else. However, it’s a monster, but isn’t. It’s a crystal ball… a lab experiment… a human… a… shite, I don’t know!

wth
WHAAAAAT? (shaking my head)

***

Okay. I said that I was going to make this review short if at all possible.

Three pages later…

Well, you get the drift.

I’m very sorry but this book is abhorrent, vile, and generally an ALL OUT LOATHSOME display of writing!

I wouldn’t recommend this book to my worst enemy.

It (1) puts the integrity of the author in question. I really don’t want to give a spoiler, but I have to say that it is mentioned in the book that the “main character” would have to write “fake reviews” for his own works. That begs that question “Did the author?” sorry to be blunt, but I wouldn’t be Mini Truth if I weren’t. It also (2) makes for an anomalous challenge to read (3) has absolutely no soul or foundation and (4) is the WORST representation, to date, which I’ve witnessed, of today’s writing industry as a whole.

NEVER—NOT EVER—would I EVER pick up another book by this author again!

Truthful Verdict: 0 out of 10 TRB Stars

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Last but certainly not least, Mr. Controversy:

controversybanner
There are 243 pages to Marlowe’s novel “Phantasy”. This work has been received by me in the form of a PDF.

As described by the author on Amazon (specifically, the Long Description):

Fired from his job, dumped by his girlfriend and shoved around by the world, a young, lazy, day-dreamer takes refuge in his world of dreams and fantasies, and finally decides to become a writer. And what does he want to write about? He wants to write about monsters! He wants to write about fights, action, adventure, etc.! He’s writing a book about:

‘Two simple minded, happy-go-lucky buddies suddenly find themselves in trouble when they are attacked by a fireball-belching monster whom nothing seems to be able to defeat. When all the tricks of the local police fail to control the creature, and ordinary bullets and bombs prove useless, the captain figures out that the monster can be gotten rid of using only (un)natural means!’

He has started created a world of his own, a world in which only HE can rule with full authority. But will he be able to finish what he’s started? More importantly, will he be able to taste success in his new venture?

Confused Ramsay
Right: let’s get to it.

Before we begin this review, Please allow me to introduce myself:

My name is Mr. Controversy.

I look for Coherence.  I look for Flaws.  I look for detail in ALL works (whether it is Poetry, stories, etc.).  I LOVE to envision myself being at that place in that moment in time. Most of all, I look for something that I would LOVE to have on my bookshelf; something at which that I can look, and smile brightly because it was THAT DAMN GOOD.

I am EXTREMELY Honest when I review.

If I LIKE your work, I will let you know.

If I DO NOT like your work:

Not only will I REALLY let you know, I will point out more than three examples, correct your work (based on the examples pointed out by me), and give your work a Low Score based on The Review Board’s Ten-Star System which I Designed.

Also, I am very open-minded and will read anything.

I will quickly trust a one or two star review OVER a three through five star reviews on other websites. Those who have reviewed books THAT LOW are from reviewers who see that the work is not done well, and it prepares me mentally for what to expect from the writer.

My BIGGEST Pet Peeve is when I (or any of The Ladies of The Review Board) do a review and we are HONEST with our reviews and opinions, the author of the work complains about the HONEST REVIEW that THEY SOUGHT OUT with us.

I WILL be the first to let One know that you looked to us to be Honest; DO NOT complain about the VERY THING that you requested from us.  IF that does happen, your rating WILL drop by Two Stars (by MY HAND) GUARANTEED and I will note it IN BOLD PRINT in the review (whether it is my review, or one of The Ladies of TRB).

 

The first thing that got under my skin is the (long) description itself (where paragraph two is the short description; shown above and earlier in the review). I am compelled to rewrite it to where it makes some sort of sense grammar wise, and here is MY Revision:

Fired from his job, dumped by his girlfriend, and shoved around by the world, a young, lazy day-dreamer takes refuge in his world of dreams and fantasies:  finally deciding to become a writer. And about what does he want to write? He wants to write about monsters! He wants to write about fights, action, adventure, etc. He is writing a book revolving around this premise:

‘Two simple minded, happy-go-lucky buddies suddenly find themselves in trouble when they are attacked by a fireball-belching monster where nothing seems to be able to defeat the brute. When all of the tricks by the local police fail in controlling the creature where ordinary bullets as well as bombs prove useless, the captain figures out that the monster can be defeated by using only (un)natural means.’

He has started creating a world of his own: a world in which only HE can rule with full authority. But will he be able to finish what he has started? More importantly, will he be able to taste success in his new venture?

 

The next item that got my goat is the “Critical Acclaim for Phantasy and Marlowe on Amazon.com” on page two (2) of the book. I am pretty miffed about seeing how an author needs to feel validated by putting compliment after compliment into their book.  Personally, that type of thing is a turn-off for me, and most likely for several other people.
SMH Ramsay2

Hey: whatever floats your boat.

Next up is the Author’s Note, which reads as follows:

NOT recommended for minors! Content may offend some people (read below)!

While reading this book, please remember that suspension of disbelief is a must! After all, a lot of the things that you are going to read in this book are not even remotely realistic!

The characters of this book are absolutely fictitious – bearing NO relation to any person, either living or dead! As such, any resemblance of this book and/or its characters to any actual event and/or person, place, locales, businesses, etc., is purely coincidental! Although the book is written in first person, the reader should assume that the author and the narrator are completely DIFFERENT individuals with NO relation to each other!!

Readers are hereby warned that the content herein may contain explicit sexual content, profanity in language, as well as sexist, anti-religious and atheistic overtones. Therefore the author suggests that this book be read only by open-minded, thinking adults of 18 years or above: in other words, only people with BRAINS should read it! Prudish people and those who are overtly conservative about their religion/ideology are advised not to touch this book at all! People who get turned off by profanity in language should not read this piece either – for profanity has been used in abundance here! The author won’t be responsible for those who choose to read this book in spite of the warning and get offended as a result.

Nonetheless, the author has no intention of spreading any kind of communal/cultural hatred, any sort of anti-religious or chauvinistic feelings among anybody. The author has merely attempted – in the most honest way possible – to bring out the true nature and character of an asocial and morally corrupt human being – whom many of the ‘normal’ people would consider to be utterly despicable and unredeemable. The author hopes that the readers would understand that in order to do full justice to such a character, it is necessary to use words and phrases that might be offensive to some people or religious communities.

Readers are requested to report any and all errors pertaining to spelling – they would be corrected in future editions!

As a final note, the author has nothing against Pink Floyd! The author is actually their huge fan!

By reading the book, you confirm that you understand all the above clearly!

wtf-dr-phil-gif

 

Chef Ramsay Deluded
I am disappointed.

I am disappointed that the author had to write something of this nature and then pass it off as an “Author’s Note,” when in reality he is talking down to the readers as if they are kindergarteners who are not potty trained.

I find it to be VERY insulting that the sentence, “Therefore the author suggests that this book be read only by open-minded, thinking adults of 18 years or above: in other words, only people with BRAINS should read it!” was even thought up! Where does an author who is looking to cement their legacy as a writer and author get off by saying something SO OUTLANDISH to where this specific combination of words will INSTANTLY turn off their readers with this level of arrogance BEFORE they think of purchasing their book?

Ladies and Gentlemen, this “Author’s Note” (SPECIFICALLY, that quote) is shown in the book’s Preview on Amazon.com:

Phantasy eBook
I have polled 20 people with this Author’s Note, and when they read it, I asked them if they would be interested purchasing a book with that lingo (with the exception of one who said, and I quote, “I don’t know… I am weird. Maybe; Odd things pull me to them.”).

Another item in the “Author’s Note” is this:

“Readers are requested to report any and all errors pertaining to spelling – they would be corrected in future editions!”

Phantasy eBook1

SMH Ramsay

 

Isn’t this is WHY there are Editors, Proofreaders, Family, Friends, Associates, Colleagues, etc. who can look these things over BEFORE books in general go to publish?! If the author proofed the book him self, they need help. If someone else proofed their book, the author should have looked for someone who would have said author’s best interest at heart. If the author paid someone to proofread his/her book, the author should sue that person in Court and get the money returned immediately.

So not only are we supposed to be enjoyers of the author’s work, we are also to be his Proofreaders as well.

 

Chef Ramsay OMG

 

To know this is Absolutely Wonderful.

I am STRONGLY Advising Mr. Marlowe that a SERIOUS Overhaul of the Author’s Note NEEDS to be executed. Here is what I would have written (it is easier to digest, WAY LESS Offensive and insulting to the fan base that he is trying to build, AND less wordy than what he wrote):

“It is strongly recommended that readers under the age of 18 should not read this book.

This story contains content of a Graphic, Coarse, Offensive, and Crude Nature. Items discussed in this book include, but are not limited to: explicit and strong sexual content, profane language, sexist dialogue, anti-religious and atheistic overtones.

The characters of this book are fictitious: this story exhibits no relation to any person, either living or deceased. Any resemblance of this book and/or its characters to any actual event and/or person, place, locales, businesses, etc., is purely coincidental.”

If nothing else, his “Author’s Note” should have been (AT BEST) a Disclaimer.

In regards to the story:

*MILD SPOILERS*.

The unnamed protagonist has had it rough: his boss is doing the help (and lost his job because he spoke his mind in the process), his mother is on his ass in ways that would make anyone’s ass hole twitch in fear and rage, he is most likely broke beyond belief, anger issues that the protagonist REALLY needs to get under control, and is struggling to make a name for himself as an author.

 

I understand the usage of Italics in reference to thought and speaking of oneself, but DAMN! I had to step away MANY TIMES from this book in order to gather my thoughts and process what I read AT THAT TIME so that I could move forward in reading this story. The italicization used throughout the story could be cut by 75% – 80% and STILL get its point across as far as what is going on between its covers.

 

Chef Ramsay WTF

 

Along with the Massive use of Italics, there was also A LOT OF CAPITALIZATION, an Overkill of the ellipsis (which is this symbol : ), Excessive Use of exclamation points (which I have learned to tone down when I write; sprinkling them lightly as if it was an ice cream topping). Not using it to kill the flavor of said ice cream (my writes), but to Enhance its flavor, sentences ending in awkward spots (Me: “Nothing HAP-PENED – really! I just got rejected that’s all…probably in favor of someone else, I think…I don’t know…I  uess…at the end of the day, you need money, lots of it, to BE or DO anything YOU want. If you want a decent job, or a decent girl, you need money…no matter how much TALENTED you are!Or how GOOD you look…talent and looks aunt got no value these days, sigh!…You have got deep pockets? Fine! You are in!”), A SHIT LOAD of spelling errors (fogget vs. faggot, for example), and THREE PERTINENT QUESTIONS came across my mind:

  1. Is this a Play/Screenplay?
  2. Does the author understand the concept of “Less is More”?
  3. Is this story a Joke to where I am on “Candid Camera” or is the author for real?

The sentences are Deathly Long, with the ellipsis (as mentioned before) has me believing that the characters do not enjoy ending their sentences. The feel of reading run-on sentences (due to the excessive usage of ellipses: I am SO SORRY for over-mentioning the ellipsis) is headache inducing and clearly not enjoyable on any level.

Simply put, this story is an editor’s/proofreader’s NIGHTMARE (Or Dream, if they charge an exuberant price by the hour to edit/proof.) Also, the author JUST MIGHT need to pay said editor/proofreader Extra Money to NOT hear insults along the way about their work while the hired help do their job).

AND THEN WE come across this VERY intriguing Gem near the end of the book which was pointed out to me BEFORE I got to this point, and had me question EVERYTHING in Life:

“I think I must now start writing fake reviews for my own sake to pull in visitors – coz I’m not getting any real ones from anybody, so?…Can’t let my ambition die such a natural death! I CAN’T! MUST DO FAKE REVIEWS NOW!…No, I can’t even distribute the book for free to friends now for publicity, I should have done that earlier but now? Too late! I have already set a price to my book – downgrading it to a free book would mean an insult again…hurt my ego! Seems like no one is willing to pay even the measly $2.99 for my book!”

 

the-rock-eyebrow

 

I find this to be VERY INTRIGUING…

As far as the “Glossary and Other Notes Pertaining to the Text of The Book”, it reads as follows:

Note: The author has made the best of efforts to provide as much authentic information as possible, yet the author cannot be held liable for any incorrect, outdated or otherwise inexhaustive information! Readers are encouraged to use this only for the purpose of understanding the book at hand and visit their local library in order to get better information!

AGAIN…

wtf-dr-phil-gif
ASIDE from the excessive and UNNECESSARY use of Exclamation Points, those two sentences are ABSURD.

A couple of things as well as Food for Thought for the Author in regards and pertaining to this “gem”:

  1. YOU ARE LIABLE AND HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR THE INFORMATION THAT YOU PROVIDED IN YOUR BOOK!!! It is YOUR Responsibility to GUARANTEE and ASSURE YOUR READERS that the information provided BY YOU is WHOLLY and 100% Accurate.
  2. WHY IN THE ENTIRE SECTION OF HADES are we looking up information that YOU should have looked up FROM THE GET GO?! YOU should have gone to the library, YOU should have made sure that your information is Dead On, and YOU should have procured Better Information BEFORE publishing! THAT is the Mark of a TRUE Author!
  3. This bit of “FYI” (those two sentences) is an eyesore and useless to me (and MOST LIKELY anyone else who is reading your book), and SHOULD have been omitted.
  4. “The author has made the best of efforts”? SERIOUSLY? Two Words: DO BETTER.

As far as the glossary itself, WHY is the author using exclamation points? Is there a purpose of using them? If not, WHY are they there?

And now we come to Marlowe’s Story. The first sentence says it all:

Well, I don’t have much to say about myself.

why-gif
If Marlowe does not have much to say about himself, WHY write Marlowe’s Story? To me, it makes NO SENSE AT ALL to put down Marlowe’s Story when Marlowe DOES NOT have much to say about himself.

A bit of Advice, Marlowe:

Remove that sentence. COMPLETELY.

Joe Brown gavel
I am Ready to Rate the Review.

Before we begin this rating, Please allow me to REMIND YOU AGAIN of Who I Am:

My name is Mr. Controversy.

I look for Coherence.  I look for Flaws.  I look for detail in ALL works (whether it is Poetry, stories, etc.).  I LOVE to envision myself being at that place in that moment in time. Most of all, I look for something that I would LOVE to have on my bookshelf; something at which that I can look, and smile brightly because it was THAT DAMN GOOD.

I am EXTREMELY Honest when I review.

If I LIKE your work, I will let you know.

If I DO NOT like your work:

Not only will I REALLY let you know, I will point out more than three examples, correct your work (based on the examples pointed out by me), and give your work a Low Score based on The Review Board’s Ten-Star System which I Designed.

Also, I am very open-minded and will read anything.

I will quickly trust a one or two star review OVER a three through five star reviews on other websites. Those who have reviewed books THAT LOW are from reviewers who see that the work is not done well, and it prepares me mentally for what to expect from the writer.

My BIGGEST Pet Peeve is when I (or any of The Ladies of The Review Board) do a review and we are HONEST with our reviews and opinions, the author of the work complains about the HONEST REVIEW that THEY SOUGHT OUT with us.

I WILL be the first to let One know that you looked to us to be Honest; DO NOT complain about the VERY THING that you requested from us.  IF that does happen, your rating WILL drop by Two Stars (by MY HAND) GUARANTEED and I will note it IN BOLD PRINT in the review (whether it is my review, or one of The Ladies of TRB).

I am going to do something that I have NEVER DONE before: I will write my Rating in 3 personalities:

-Rating as a Consumer/Potential Reader

-Rating as a Book Reviewer, and

-Rating as an Author  readingsmiley

As a Consumer/Potential Reader, I am TURNED ALL THE WAY OFF with such a disgusting Author’s Note. If I had walked into a book store and saw this book on the shelf, thumbed to the Author’s Note and read said note and get to the sentence, “Therefore the author suggests that this book be read only by open-minded, thinking adults of 18 years or above: in other words, only people with BRAINS should read it!”, I would put the book back onto the shelf, give the Dr. Phil stare, and walk out of the store for selling such a shameful piece of literature.

 

Dr. Phil Stare

 

Simply put…

The old adage, “You can shovel shit into a big pile on the grass, and then a bed of roses will bloom” is NOT going to help this book AT ALL.

ALL of the Cow’s Shit, All of the Horse’s Shit, All of the Pig’s Shit, ALL of the Chicken’s Shit, ALL of the Bull’s Shit, along with EVERY OTHER PIECE OF SHIT ON THE FACE OF AND IN THE PLANET EARTH will NEVER

NEVER AND IN NO WAY EVER turn into a Bed of Roses!

As a Consumer/Potential Reader of your work, I am insulted.

 

LET ME BE CRYSTAL CLEAR: I DO NOT mind the controversial nature of the book (I LOVE Sexist, Raucous, Sexually Charged, SUPER OFFENSIVE, and Misogynistic literature; how else would the Author keep my attention?), it is how YOU came off in that piss poor writing that YOU CALL “Author’s Note”.

 

Disappointed-Gordon-Ramsay

 

As a Book Reviewer, it is truly disappointing to see so many items (italicization, capitalization, exclamation points) overly used throughout the book (despite its usage of portraying the characters as Passionate, Angry, Frustrated, Excited, etc.). Less is INDEED More, and to utilize that mode and train of thought would have GREATLY benefited Marlowe in delivering a more effective story.

As I stated earlier, if he had edited/proofread “Phantasy” by himself, he needed help. If he had someone else edit/proofread his book (albeit he paid them for their services/“expertise” or not) he should have sought out people who would have had his Best Interest at Heart, so that his story would have been the Most Compelling Piece of Art that I would have EVER READ IN MY LIFE.

 

scale-animation
In comparison, Patrick Perry’s “Valentine’s Day” (a story which I voiced UTTER displeasure) is The Best of the Worst between his story and Marlowe’s “Phantasy”.

 

why-gif

Also, with a bit more thought AND effort into the story telling would not have hurt in the least bit. It is VERY KEY to write a story that can be followed by and for your readers. Otherwise, people are going to look at the book and wonder, “WHAT DID I PURCHASE, AND WHY DID I PURCHASE THIS BOOK?!”

As an Author, I NOW know how NOT to piss off people, I NOW know how NOT to write, and I NOW know to NEVER Insult the Intelligence of The People by speaking to them like they are lower than excrement.

And THAT is a Compliment; this is the ONLY Upside about this book and the ONLY compliment that Marlowe will EVER receive from me.

SURVEY SAYS: A MISERABLY NIGHTMARISH AND ABSURDLY RIDICULOUS ABSOLUTE ZERO

 

Chef Ramsay OMG

 

Marlowe’s “Phantasy” failed in effectiveness, delivery, presentation, and anything else that I may have missed in regards to literary measurement.

If Marlowe is TRULY seeking to be considered to be a Fair Writer (we will start there and then work our way up from that point), My Advice is simple:

Up your standards to NOT say that “only people with brains should read it” when it comes to your work. You look like an idiot coming out of YOUR MOUTH with those words.

Mick Foley and Me Cropped

Get better help when it comes to editing.  I spoke with The Great and Legendary Mick Foley on June 18, 2014 after he did Stand-Up Comedy at the Helium Comedy Club in my hometown of Philadelphia, PA. We both agreed that it is Important to have good people (Editors and Proofreaders) who will take good care of your writing.

Think before you write, especially if you are looking to develop a Strong Following. It is good to be creative. However, there IS a line that can be crossed and ALL of the hard work that you put forth into your book has the potential to get lost in translation.

Chef Ramsay Fed Up

I could go on and on with my advice to Marlowe, yet I am done writing (and MOST LIKELY said advice will fall onto Deaf Ears, highlighting and showcasing a Large Degree of Immaturity from someone who is already at that point by displaying a degree of ignorance that would make the Most Ratchet of People look EXTREMELY Civilized).

 

No gif
Ladies and Gentlemen, Daniel Bryan said it best and I agree.

DO NOT waste your time with this book.

*REVIEW’S NOTE*

I bought a bottle of Southern Comfort with Lime in the HOPES of enjoying a drink while I read this book and wrote its review.

I regret to inform everyone who is reading this review, by the time I finished everything pertaining to this book, I am down to the last 1/10th of a bottle.

SoCo and Lime
And now, the bottle of SoCo with Lime is Dead.

 

SoCo Lime2

 

 

Chef Ramsay Towel

 

#RIPTwentyDollars

#RIPSouthernComfortWithLime

#YouOweMeTwentyDollarsMarlowe

 

Well, now that the Southern Comfort has been finished (and laid to rest), let’s add the scores up and divide by 4:

1star

Overall, The Review Board awards Phantasy by Marlowe, Sr. a 1 out of 10 TRB Stars.

Thanks for checking out the Super Sized edition of The Review Board.  We hope you have indulged in yummy food and drink while reading this review.  Enjoy the rest of your day.

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About nolabels

I have an appreciation for the unique, love for all types of art, and fierce attractions to brilliant intellectuals (from book smarts to street smarts). Lover of humanity but feel humans have lost their way, just trying to stay true to myself as conformity threatens to take me away. Simply one head, many crowns: Author. Reviewer. Columnist.

3 comments on “The Harmonious Unleashed Truth of Controversy on Phantasy

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  3. Pingback: Harmonious Truth Speaks on Universes of God: The Chronicles of the Angels | The Review Board

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This entry was posted on June 23, 2014 by in e-books, June, reviews and tagged , .

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