I didn't really want to read it, so I skimmed it, looking for the good parts, mostly the flashbacks. It wasn't all that impressive and I set it aside. Little did I realize how entertaining it could be as this LiveJournaler has found.
Apparently, I had missed a lot of man-on-man (I hesitate to use the word gay, because I don't consider taking characters I consider straight and putting them in homosexual relationships, known as "slash" to be gay) sexual innuendo. I've now started to read the thing. I'm still skippingover the actual story/plot points, aka the scenes with none of our heroes (Batman, Green Arrow, Aquaman, Nightwing, Arsenal, and Aqualad). And I am stunned. As maelithil, the LJer, says:
"It defies logic and explanation, it's Lord Kind Bad Novel and Porno Rag InThere are some entertaining excerpts on the LJ.
Syllables all in one. She either bribed the editors or shot them, I can't decide
which. I can't believe DC published this. If you thought she was outspoken in
certain interviews, you ain't seen nothing yet."
It's not just the suggestive content that boggles my mind. I remember a Star Trek: Original Series novel that was pulled and re-edited before being republished, to remove suggestive slash passages, slash having originated (in its current form; I'm sure the idea has been around a very long time, but Star Trek man-on-man sex was called Kirk/Spock, abbreviated K/S, which got known as slash when it referred to other characters due, of course, to the / mark. Except for some purple prose, that Trek book wasn't bad at all, well above the average fan fiction novel. I wish I could say Devin's effort reads as well as that. It doesn't come close.
So far, and I'm not all that far in yet, it's reading like a Hardy Boys tale without the earnestness and innocence. Actually, books on the Hardy Boys's level are better because they are what they are and they aren't striving to be something more. They're books for kids. Simple, straightforward prose. Devin's book, ostensibly, based on its shelving with adult books in my local B&N (in the science fiction/fantasy section -- yeah, it's fantasy, all right), is supposedly an adult book written for someone first learning English. The prose is as flat and unemotional as an average piece of wood, except when it's also awkward and/or unintentionally funny.
I wasn't expecting great literature, but I was expecting solid writing, not something that comes across as amateur hour on paper. And as maelithil said, I wonder how this thing got published. Did the editor actually read it? Who was the audience? Did they think the innuendo would go over the average fanboy's head? Did it go over the editor's head? Has the standards of good writing taken such a blow at the book division that drek like this is publishable? I expect this level of prose from PublishAmerica, not a major book publisher.
Has anyone read it? Care to comment?