Right now I’m reading Scandalous Women, a short volume with very brief biographies of women through history that were scandalous or infamous for their behavior. I like the concept and the organization of the book but feel pretty ambivalent about the tone and style of writing, which is extremely casual and informal. On one hand, it makes sense to use a contemporary approach to language, metaphor, and comparisons in order to introduce readers to historical figures they may never have heard of. On the other hand, it seems a little too pop culture referential to me, since I don’t need names like Lady Gaga to be dropped in order to be engaged by the material. But perhaps I’m not really the target audience for the book?
Last week Dear Author linked to an allegation of plagiarism of film content in a m/m book. It just so happens that I reviewed the book in August and gave a negative opinion based on the editing, noting the similarity in plot to the movie although possible plagiarism didn’t occur to me at the time. I’m contemplating doing a re-read of the book and a re-watch of the movie in order to examine (yes, I know others are doing the same and don’t necessarily think I have anything original to contribute to the discussion), yet am reluctant to read the book again — a lot of readers loved it, but I thought it read like a first draft and needed a lot of editing and polishing. Worth it? I don’t know, especially since the TBR is bumping up again.