I finished listening to a book called The Darkling the other day. I liked the writing, for the most part. The author is good with descriptions. However, middle of the book had some troubles in terms of story structure.
I’ve read that tension in writing is created by delaying gratification. This author was a little annoying about it. Too many answers were delayed for too long, I think.
The Darkling is a gothic horror, so scary things were happening. The same scary things, over and over with very little substantial progression for an extended period of time. Claw marks in the dirt. Creepy thing lurking in the woods. Threats, etc. Honestly, they could’ve cut a bunch of scenes, and the story wouldn’t have changed significantly. It was filler.
And then you finally get to the answers toward the end, and they come in the form of an information dump – a letter in which everything is just word vomited.
I realize the author was trying to maximize the tension. I know this. But some of those details sprinkled throughout would’ve been better. At least one of them revealed earlier on would’ve added considerable depth to the story.
So remember, friends, it’s okay not to hold onto every little thing until the end of the book. It annoys the reader, especially when that reader (or listener) is me.