The Part About the Dragon Was (Mostly) True by Sean Gibson
Verdict: way too many digressions; the crude / poop jokes didn’t really do it for me either; and the characters felt flat and singularly defined by one characteristic.
Recommended: there’s definitely people who will love this (just…not me)
If you love crude humor and poop jokes; if you can follow along a whiplash ride and don’t mind constant diversions; if you’re looking more for humour than a story or developed characters; if you’ve never read an “epic adventure” parody book (because this one wasn’t great, so if you’ve read and enjoyed another you’ll probably be disappointed)
Sure, you think you know the story of the fearsome red dragon, Dragonia. How it terrorized the village of Skendrick until a brave band of heroes answered the noble villagers’ call for aid. How nothing could stop those courageous souls from facing down the dragon. How they emerged victorious and laden with treasure. But, even in a world filled with epic adventures and tales of derring-do, where dragons, goblins, and unlicensed prestidigitators run amok, legendary heroes don’t always know what they’re doing. Sometimes they’re clueless. Sometimes beleaguered townsfolk are more hapless than helpless. And orcs? They’re not always assholes, and sometimes they don’t actually want to eat your children. Heloise the Bard, Erithea’s most renowned storyteller (at least, to hear her tell it), is here to set the record straight. See, it turns out adventuring isn’t easy, and true heroism is as rare as an articulate villager. Having spent decades propagating this particular myth (which, incidentally, she wrote), she’s finally able to tell the real story—for which she just so happened to have a front-row seat.
DNF @ ~80%. My, oh my. The digressions were just way too much for me. Heloise must have a touch of ADD. What a shame because this was one of my Fast Forward Friday features! But, look, even the BLURB is enormously long and wordy.
My overall feeling:
– there’s a lot of humour, if it’s your style of humour
– the characters are firmly established in their style
– it’s probably a fun read in some ways
– you’ll never get a simple sentence. parentheticals within parentheticals, and stories to explain stories to explain the backstory. it’s so so tiring
– almost predictable in it’s “buck the cliche” form
– it wasn’t my style of humour, oddly. think like, a happy-drunk at the bar making vaguely sexual puns and nudging you in the ribs with her elbow
Ultimately I could see that I was clearly getting to the end, and I thought “Wait. Why should I bother? I’m not enjoying this at all and I don’t really care how it ends. This has become a chore, and luckily it’s not one I really have to finish.”
My recommendation for something similar, but that I enjoyed wildly: Champions of the Dragon by Michael James Ploof. Satire/parody of LOTR, basically.