Monday, 16 June 2014

Winners by Danielle Steel

Lily Thomas lay in bed when the alarm went off on a snowy January morning in Squaw Valley.

Two cliches in the opening sentence are not as common as one might think. I'd say about the majority of the books I open have some sort of cliched, uncreative opening, but usually not in the same sentence. Individually they are, or they wouldn't be cliches. I'm not sure which is worse, the bed setting or the weather report. I suppose the weather report is abused more, so it's worse.

The whole first paragraph is about the weather and the problems it's sort of causing because Lily likes to ski and has the hots for a certain instructor, Jason and may not be able to see him because of all the snow. Damn snow.

Paragraph 2 is a back story dump about past Christmas breaks, where they were taken and with whom and for what. In paragraph 3 we return to the bed setting and Lily stretching as she dreams about Jason. Thankfully, this is interrupted with paragraph 4 as the narrative yo-yos to more back story, unfortunately, about her father, simple beginnings in a mining town, school, etc. It's like being in bed with Lily as she daydreams about Jason and shows you a photo album of her life at the same time. I want to run.

First thing said:

"I was wondering if you were going to sleep in."

The title is boring and sounds like a department store, that's just how nondescript it is. Obviously, the hook is in the byline. This author has her readers who buy this regardless of how it opens. But I wonder how new readers, picking this up author up for the first time get hooked. The romance element, a girl in bed on a snowy day dreaming about a boy, must do it.

Verdict: Boring Fail

Theodore Moracht

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