Well, I’ve royally cocked this reading thing up this year, so far.
It’s the 28th of January, three days before the end of the month. And I’ve managed to read one book.
One bastard book.
It just took an absolute dog’s age. It was one of those books that you want to read, but when you do read it you find every page to be a chore. And then you reach a point when you think that it would be stupid to jack it in now after you’ve invested so much time in getting as far as you had.
And then you get to the end of it and it’s the biggest anti-climax you’ve come across in a long time. Definitely the biggest one this year.
That’s pretty much what has happened. I was lured in by the old mystical ancient artefact adventure story – something I lap up when it’s done well (by the likes of Andy McDermott or Matthew Reilly). There wasn’t much lapping in this case. I mean, I stayed hydrated – to continue my drinking metaphor – but with very, very small sips. I took a reasonably large gulp once I knew I was near the end of the beverage, but then it kind of went down the wrong way and ended with a wet splutter.
I blame Dan Brown.
Dan Brown made it okay for everyone to write adventure novels about artefact nonsense. Before Dan Brown that kind of this was the domain of Lara Croft and Indiana Jones. Now it’s everyone. Or, more precisely, every single professor who teaches in or around the Oxford area. That’s certainly how it seems. I don’t know how Oxford can keep a reputation as being one of the best places of higher learning when half of the faculty is off looking for things that might not even exist but undoubtedly do. The other half of the faculty are usually murdered by bad guys trying to get at the first half of the faculty.
There cannot be any teaching staff in these places.
Clive Cussler does it, obviously. He’ll have Dirk Pitt (Senior or Junior) off after an item of fabled power, or the Fargos, or Kurt Austin. Or Jose Cabrillo. He’ll have them all off after these items. But what Cussler does – aside from annoyingly put himself in the books all the time like an egotistical tit weasel – is conveniently forgets about the artefact for the most part, using merely as a convenient stepping stone to the James-Bond-Villain-esque scheme of evil that will be uncovered along the way.
This didn’t even do that.
It had the artefacts which, I have to say, were so pissing easy to find it was ridiculous. Twelve stones lost since the times of the apostles, held by keepers – each one a secret. You know how they found them. Essentially, Google. But Google that just went through every religious text in the world. But still, Google.
I read a book in which the main hero was actually a search engine.
And it took me nearly a month.
It’s gonna be a bumpy year, kids.