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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Review: How The Hangman Lost His Heart

Book: How The Hangman Lost His Heart
Author: K.M. Grant
Pages: 256
Published: September 18, 2007

What's a nice girl like Alice doing with a hangman called Dan Skinslicer?
He likes a good clean killing and a hearty supper afterwards.

She likes pretty dresses and riding a well-bred horse.
But fate throws them together on a mission of mercy--to save Alice's poor uncle Frank's head and restore his dignity.
Soon they find themselves on the run from every soldier in London.
It could be their necks next!

General Overview: The premise of this book sounded interesting, but I wasn't sure how much I'd like it -- that's why I checked it out from the library. Unfortunately, How The Hangman Lost His Heart just didn't do it for me.

Characters: Okay, the thing is, I kind of liked the characters. I liked Alice's wit and stubbornness and I liked Dan's resolution and dedication. Sadly, I just never connected with either of them. I enjoyed their casual banter and easy relationship, and I liked the dialogue, especially the ones that involved the major and Ffrench, but I was never able to sympathize with any of them, particularly not Alice. I found that I was disappointed with these characters more often than I was happy with them.

Plot: This is supposed to be an adventure book, and while there are definitely some elements of action in here, sometimes the plot felt like it was moving too slowly for me and it got too repetitive! And, not to mention the fact that the inside flap synopsis is really quite misleading. Alice is definitely not the lady she's supposed to be, and Dan isn't as rough as the synopsis makes him seem. I thought the plot could have been more absorbing and more...well, adventurous! I had already predicted the entire storyline of the book from the first few chapters, and what do you know? I was right. That seriously disappointed me.

Writing: This is reasonably easy book to read. The writing doesn't have any amazing prose, nor is there a lyrical quality to the words, but it flowed. And I mean it really flowed! Some authors, even though their writing sounds beautiful, write with sentences that don't flow together! They seem very choppy sometimes, and I hate when that happens. However, K.M. Grant definitely writes with a certain ease that makes her books easy to read.

Cover: Hmm...I wouldn't say that this is an exceptional cover, the font confuses me a bit (why does it change?), I do like the background and the crows, even though they're not of much significance to the story. I don't think this cover fits the book at all, but it's a nice try.

Overall: 2 out of 5 stars

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