I don’t read as much as I used to. By that I mean long sessions of reading, but in the last couple of years I have read several novels on an on-off basis because duty called elsewhere. There was always a book waiting to be picked up, though. My taste of subjects and plots varies so long as the author writes well and convincingly. Anything remotely conflicting with the English language gets tossed aside and given to charity. Charities get all my books but the conflicts get there first simply because I don’t wish to read further.
In recent months I read some good novels but one really stands ... not because of its brilliance, although the author does know how to write. The author is well known for writing criminal based fiction; in fact I can’t remember her ever changing the style so that she wrote about decent law-abiding folk. I could be wrong though. Many years ago I vowed never to read one of her books again ... this year I thought I’d give her another go. My mistake!
It can be interesting to learn how other people live and I admire anyone who can put a story together no matter what the background, but what annoyed me throughout the book was the over-use of the F word. I say ‘over-use’ ... what I should have said was ‘liberally peppered on all pages’. Admittedly there are folk in the world who frequently use the F and C words who would not take offence at seeing them in print, but it makes me wonder what is happening to the English language. Yes, I finished the book because of a need to know the ending ... but was it worth it? I’m afraid not.
Is it laziness that makes people use such words? Or perhaps it’s because they don’t know what a lovely language we have? I admit to using the F word once in one of my books, but it was to demonstrate anger and seemed right in the circumstance written about. Overuse can be less effective, leading to people not bothering to talk properly. God help the children born in such a world.
The book I refer to is called ‘The Good Life’ and the author is Martina Cole who, according to a write-up in the front of the book, is the acknowledged queen of crime drama. Maybe, but perhaps she should realise that people can take offence at the excessive use of bad language. Another critic wrote that this book was ‘A blinding good read’ ... good description, with emphasis on the ‘blind’.