Sunday, November 13, 2016

Power Lines (1994)

Power Lines by Anne McCaffrey and Elizabeth Scarborough is a narrative catastrophe continuing the Petaybee storyline. In this book, the plot line disintegrates into incoherence, but does eventually stumble about to a conclusion of sort.

In the first book of this series, Anne and Elizabeth showed how they could world together to build a fun world, even if the results were sort of blah. In this book, they struggle back and forth over who has the plot line, demonstrating exactly how not to to write a shared book. They start numerous plot lines, run down equally numerous dead ends, with equally swerves and veers as the plot line gets pounded this way and that with no subtlety, and finally, crawls its way over the finish line and reaches its word count.

Some parts of the book read like summaries rather than plot, especially toward the end, where the writers vainly hope to give us a conclusion, but there's no way that they can give us a satisfying conclusion because what came before produced no coherent narrative to cumulate.

I don't even know who the main character is supposed to be. The book feels more like a bunch of short stories crammed together into a power cord tangle than a proper book. I'd say that the short stories were satisfying, but they're not.

I am truly agog that two experienced writers would produce such a catastrophe.