Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Promises in Death by J.D. Robb

She was dead the minute she answered the 'link.

So we have what looks like a dead prologuie in this opening line of the prologue. The question here is what does it mean by the 'link? The rest of the paragraph explains that "she" the pronoun really wasn't dead as soon as she answered the 'link, because she gets excited and gets dressed, so the opening line is speaking figuratively, not literally. The short prologue ends with this prologuie dying, of course, at the hands of a friend. That is all we learn.

Chapter 1:

Eve stepped out of the shower and into the drying tube.

At this point I'm thinking this story takes place in the future and the word 'link is some kind of future technology. Placing little words here and there will have a way of doing that. It's not bad; it's better than having a description or setting dump that goes for pages. Little is more.

The opening paragraph does little except describe the day in the life of someone in the future and does not hook.

First thing said:

"Be back soon."

The prologue has hooking elements in it but as it is a prologue, the writer must rehook in chapter 1, as the first chapter, where the protagonist's story begins, usually consists of different characters in different places with different problems. However, what makes a chapter 1 unpalatable is that the connection between chapter 1 and the prologue are never evident - so much so that it sometimes feels like one is reading a new story.

Verdict: Pass (barely)

Theodore Moracht

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