Having finished Little Women including Good Wives last night, I headed to the to be read bookcase, review book shelf this morning and plucked down the fattest book on there. (A new approach to clearing the decks – start with the biggest one first.)
It was Chris Carter’s The Death Sculptor. So police procedural, so standard, right? The back cover stated “Gripping… not for the squeamish”, but I made it through the Millennium trilogy so that’s nothing for me, right?
Turns out I couldn’t make it past page 10. It wasn’t that I felt ill (although as they got further into the description of just what had happened to the victim, I might have done!), I found the whole text abhorrent and had no interest at all in continuing to read.
I’ve written on this topic before (hmm, can’t find the link from the last time I gave up on a book in a few pages because it was just too gross) – that I generally don’t react to violence in books, although I can’t tolerate it in films. So there comes a point (where I can’t tolerate the violence in a book) where I think, what’s the point? Why write this? Intended to shock? Maybe – but that’s unlikely to help sales from Simon & Schuster (who kindly sent the book for review!) under “Fiction/Thriller”. It needs a separate category “Gore-tastic”.
Is it hypocritical of me to be shocked by a certain threshold of violence and then be surprised that anyone writes past that threshold… when others have other thresholds?