Some of you know Allison Rose. She’s a fellow writer, of many genres and a great sense of humor. She’s also done a guest post on my blog.
Sunday, she started a serial story (funny how that seems to be going around).
The title, Flora Dennis and the Isle of Two Eyes, gives a pretty good idea as to what general type of story it is, but the jury is still out as to exactly which genre it fits (maybe Ms. Rose could tell you). There’s not enough of it yet for me to really say what the plot-line actually is, but it caught my attention with the style.
How often do you pick up a book that looks interesting, but obviously takes itself so seriously that it’s painful? Sure, epic fantasy or gritty detective stories can pull “serious” off, but most other genres need a lighter touch. Most writers seem to think “lighter touch” means they need to add humorous scenes. That’s not what it means.
Ms. Rose pulls it off. I almost lost interest in the first paragraph, since the young-adventurer/adventuress-plunged-into-mysterious-quest-with-her-team-of-unlikely-compatriots isn’t really my go-to story. Particularly not when it’s written like… wait a sec. What IS it written like?
Frankly, I can’t say. It’s overblown, self-admittedly wordy, and filled with wonderfully standard characters. It’s not a parody, or a comedy. It’s not a hyper-serious adventure story, or a YA bildungsroman.
It’s FUNNY. And captivating. It takes the story seriously, but not the storytelling. The characters seem cliched at first, but you can’t imagine them any other way. In the first chapter, they leap feet-first into an “adventure” with caution obviously being the first casualty.
It’s full of hilariously perfect comparisons couched in ‘high-falutin’ language and a beautiful scripted format. The “…trees were but broccoli stalks from our vantage point” is just one such.
Even more awesomely (yes, that’s a word today) Ms. Rose references ancient languages (a favorite hobby of mine) and niftily makes up her own as she goes.
Ms. Rose, even with my classical education and love of geography, ancient cultures, and old languages, I have never even heard of Madrepal or the Island of Two Eyes. Thank you for bringing them to my attention.