Figs? Where Are the Figs?

Captain’s Log   5,963

I have to read a book for the club.  I don’t have any time in the next two weeks, so I got busy with this book yesterday.


Oh, dear God.  Help me.

It contains typos (like the words skum and lightening).  Makes my teeth hurt to read it.  It’s one of those books that takes you everywhere.  To a farmer’s daughter getting married to a nice man, to Turkish soldiers stealing her husband, to blown up trains, to camels in the desert, and more.  She’s in a convent now learning to be a midwife and some jealous students beat her up in an alley.  Never fear, some Amazon-sized old nun carried her into the kitchen.

Kindle says I am 62% of the way through this one.  I keep glancing at the corner to see how much more is left.

I feel compelled to read it because the author is joining us for breakfast.  What do you say to someone who can’t spell scum?  She agreed to meet with us but only at someone’s house.  What’s wrong with a restaurant?  Now somebody has to host the party.  I was asked but I simply do not have the time to cook brunch for 10 people.  Not when I am working 14 days in a row starting Monday.  No brunch cooking for me!

This book has won awards.  I don’t see how.  The Fig Orchard was awarded the San Diego Book Awards (2014) Theodore S. Geisel Award for Best Self-Published Book  (“Best of Best”) and the Award for Best Self-Published Historical Fiction.  I don’t understand either award.  I was discussing this with a fellow club member earlier today, and we both agreed that historical fiction needs to set the historical truth.  This book does not do that.  All of a sudden, Turkish soldiers are running around stealing men.  The British attack and then the war is over.  Not one mention is made of why this war even happened or when it happened.  Major fail.  We also don’t even know WHERE the story is taking place.  Somewhere in the Middle East.  They just say “north of Jerusalem.”

We decided that we will go to the book club brunch and say things like “Good job on your first book” or “So many interesting plot twists.”  I think we will be safe with those statements.  As long as we don’t look at each other.

So far, the actual fig orchard story took up maybe 500 words.  I hope the orchard comes back.  Reading about the fruit is more compelling than reading about the people.


Filed under Captain Poolie's observations

9 responses to “Figs? Where Are the Figs?

  1. annanotbob

    Where’s Simon Cowell when you need him? He’s good at suggesting it may be to find a new hobby xxxx

  2. poundheadhere

    Having self published my own book, I know how painfully hard it is to eliminate 100% of your typos. From the sounds of things, though, the spelling wasn’t nearly the worst of it. I don’t know how this author would handle constructive criticism. I beg for it, though, so in all honesty you might mention that you saw some things that you suspect she missed, and point them out (at the very least, the spelling issues. You can’t fix a hashed plot.)

  3. Skim….and look intelligent at the gathering. LOL

  4. :PattyO"

    Oh dear. That is the kind of book that sends me screaming back to Tolstoi or Dumas or Austen or Shakespeare or JBS or Mark Twain or LEGIONS of others who are worth our time and effort. Life is too short for this.

  5. goatbarnwitch

    I become wary when “self published” is part if the description. I’ve read many good ones and plenty of real klunkers

  6. maryz

    Sometimes even spellchecker doesn’t work.

  7. Offer her the services of a good proofreader. You know several!

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