Friday, November 23, 2018

Sofia and the Pornographic Penguin

Sofia and the Pornographic Penguin is a genre defying new release from Richard Harrington.  Released 12 July 2018 by Amazon, it's 274 pages and available in paperback and ebook formats.

This is ostensibly the first novel in a series (Sofia and the Manor House Saga).  There are some mystery elements but the author seems to mostly be aiming for farcical comedy.  It struck me as a cross between a Benny Hill sketch and Steven Moffat's series 'Coupling' (anyone else remember that one?). I spent about 80% of my time reading this book rolling my eyes.

There are a number of problems with the narrative.  The dialogue is often truly cringe-worthy.  The characters are strictly two dimensional and largely cringe-worthy themselves.  As an exercise, I started trying to edit this in my head as I was reading.  I gave that up after a few pages, but it really convinced me that the book is in dire need of a major rewrite. The entire book is a sort of stream of consciousness fart and sex joke.  The book seems to not have been rewritten or polished and suffers for it.  There's a point at which *nudge nudge* *wink wink* stop being funny.  Despite its modern slang connotations, the word "cum" is just Latin for "with".  The author apparently found the entendre endlessly amusing and the first chapter reads as though he was being paid for every use of the word.  Every possible double use of the words "cum, pussy, cock, balls", etc is thrust before the reader (*har har*).  The characters spend most of their time screaming at one another and/or trying to have sex, or both at the same time.

I'm not offended by language or sexual content.  For readers who want their narratives clean and tidy, move along.  The book is absolutely full of raunchy double entendres and inappropriate language.  There are many raunchy stand up comedians who leave me doubled over gasping from laughing.  This book missed by a mile for me.

For me, two stars.  Reading the reviews and ratings from other readers, I appear to be in the minority.  It's possibly worth noting that the book is available to download and read for free for Kindle Unlimited readers. For readers who wish to try an excerpt, you can find a readable excerpt on Amazon on the book's page.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.

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