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Book Review

Saturday, 11 April, 2009 12:33 PM

"A Chance to Say Yes" should be passed up

Photo credit: www.archebooks.com

"A Chance to Say Yes"

by Steve Anderson
thevideostoreguy@columnist.com

 

 

A Chance to Say Yes, or as it should be more accurately titled, Adultery A Go-Go, is 304 pages of self-indulgent drivel perpetrated by a woman who should've stayed out of novel writing and should have instead stuck to whatever it was her Ph.D. is in. I really don't care WHAT her Ph.D. is in, because frankly, she can't be any worse at that than she can be at writing.

Think I'm being too harsh? Well, sit down and brace yourselves, folks, because I'm about to prove this beyond all reasonable doubt with the plot analysis. Heston Demming, world-famous actor, celebrity, womanizer and magnificently self-righteous and self-pitying jackanape extraordinaire, has returned to his old stomping grounds, where apparently EVERYBODY is rich and at least somewhat famous, but no one more so than Heston. And Heston, you see, has come to GLOAT. And gloat he shall, rubbing everyone's nose in his amazing success by purchasing massive houses, paying off private detectives, being seen in the paparazzi's sights on the order of once a week if the book's being accurate and tooling around in a massive sailing yacht with the egomaniacally understated name of Windswept.

Of course, there's a darker side to Heston that Murray LOVES to wallow in, or rather have Heston wallow in, for long and excruciating pages at a time. He's an alcoholic who's actively destroyed lives, but to the rest of the world he's apparently the most wantable man on earth. Despite the fact that he's rather inconveniently married to an abusive gold-digging harpy who's cheating on him with an artist sufficiently fruity to make his own juice when you shake his hand. Suffice it to say that as much as he mourns the lives he's destroyed, he'll destroy several more before the novel's over, and he won't seem to have any problem with THOSE.

Enter Heston's long-lost first love Poppy, who's now an art dealer, and who's still, conveniently, VERY MUCH in love with Heston. Like looney ward in love. Like it's a wonder she hasn't carved his NAME into her forehead yet in love. Like I wish she could shut up about it for a few pages at a stretch in love.

These are just two of the examples of adultery that this book is literally packed with. Heston's got ex-wives and ex-mistresses and ex-loves scattered all over the area, and he will take a run at most of them. Heston's wife will cheat. Heston's remarried ex-wife will cheat. Heston's remarried ex-wife's husband will cheat. Poppy's husband will cheat. Poppy herself is married and would cheerfully have sex with Heston at the drop of a hat. In Murray's world, marriage vows mean about as much as the oath required to join the Colgate Cavity Patrol.

Worse yet, Murray's work is BORING. Everyone is rich and at least kind of famous, so there's only one real conflict left, the conflict that people have in bed. When so much of the book is who's sleeping with who, it stops being a novel and starts being a college dorm. Yes, okay, we GET IT--Poppy wants Heston! There's only so many times you can call him a "beautiful man" before the audience just starts begging for death.

Perhaps worst of all, Murray's work had some really GODAWFUL copy editing done to it. There's misspellings and missing commas all over it, and frankly, for an allegedly professional novel, that's downright inexcusable. Between spell check and editors, this should never have happened.

Boring, repetitive, adulterous and even occasionally creepy (don't even get me started on the Vega family), Tina Murray's A Chance to Say Yes should be passed up at every opportunity. Unless you're willing to subject yourself to almost three hundred pages of nonsensical, poorly written garbage, say no to this chance.

OVERALL RATING: E

304 pages / Publisher: ArcheBooks Publishing / June 9, 2008 / Language: English / Fiction: Romance

 

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