Book Review: Night Sounds

Description: A story about a woman enduring verbal and physical abuse and being stalked by her husband after finally escaping him.

Night Sounds by Pam Young piqued my interest. It looked and sounded like something that would get me hooked. Instead, I did a lot of skimming. This puzzled me. The writing was good. Why didn’t it interest me?

First of all, there were errors. I’m not against self-published books. I’ve given fine reviews on self-published items and some not-so-good reviews. Inconsistent point of view changes (attributed to the e-formatting perhaps?), some punctuation and e-formatting problems (i.e. NIGHT SOUNDS came after an incomplete sentence, a large space; then, the page number, followed by the rest of the sentence) made the reading a trial. I haven’t had a problem reading other e-formatted books on my kindle (except a recent ARC), and wonder if the publisher didn’t adequately e-format? It’s very distracting and breaks the tension.

Also, I had to re-read the first two chapters in order to get my bearing again. That’s unusual. I can read between the lines the author’s voice, her experience, and passion, but for some reason the book didn’t keep my attention. I did a lot of skimming, and at the end of the book stared at the wall in complete mystification. The plot was good, and yet I was bored. It hit me as I was lying in bed. The story lacked what Donald Maass calls, “micro-tension.” But even that doesn’t give me a clear idea why it bored me or how I would fix it.

I rated it three-stars for effort and good character development. Dr. Young says on Amazon.com, “In my career as professor, and later as psychotherapist, I encountered too many women who had been sexually abused. This story was written not only for the colleague who inspired it, but for all those others. Sexual abuse leaves its victim broken, depressed, angry, sleepless, and unable to form healthy, intimate relationships without some kind of healing intervention. My intention in writing this story was to facilitate awareness, understanding and perhaps even healing for all involved.” She did a very good job in illustrating that in the character of Samantha.

Book given by WoMen’s Literary Cafe to review. As of an email from WoMen’s Literary Cafe, the e-formatting issues were because it was sent as a pdf. They sent me a mobi file and so the formatting issues are a non-issue. However, I still stand by my review.

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