Friday, 6 March 2015

Review: Halloween Magic and Mayhem

Halloween Magic and Mayhem
Halloween Magic and Mayhem by Stella Wilkinson

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I got this novella as part of the Riot Girls box set. The premise of that set was "Teen girls who don't need a hero", and while that's technically true of this story, it's only true because the main character is rescued by a woman (her aunt) rather than a man. She's not really a protagonist, and doesn't solve her own problems.

I took half a star off for poor copy editing (including "its" for "it's") and generally mediocre writing. I took another half star off for lack of protagonism, and I took a whole star off for the fact that the story doesn't have a middle.

Beginning: main character is introduced, gets into trouble.
End: her aunt turns up and saves her, everything is fixed, she ends up getting everything she wanted.

Normally, there would be a middle, in which the situation develops, the main character tries and fails to solve it, she has a realisation or change of perspective that forms the pivot of the plot, she tries and fails some more, and finally she earns an insight that enables her to reach the solution. That middle is missing, or is so brief I missed it, which is part of why this story is so short.

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