I discovered recently that I have a pet peeve when it comes to novels. I’ve been reading two really good books – Wise Children by Angela Carter and A Favourite of the Gods by Sybille Bedford – and they both are really, really good. But both were a little marred for me… I’ve discovered that I really don’t like it when a novel starts with one scene in ‘present day’, and then skips back and starts again in the past, progressing forwards again to the present.
I haven’t quite worked out why. I think I’m used to ‘flashbacks’ being a bit of something to skim through, and when the flashback takes up the entire novel, obviously things are different – and perhaps I find that disconcerting. Somehow everything takes on that sepia tone of prolonged anticlimax…
Does anyone else feel like this? I imagine not… but perhaps you have other pet peeves which feel irrational, yet affect your enjoyment a bit?
Sorry for such a brief post – I’ve spent the evening painting (final picture will be shown, if it is ever finished!) and now I’m going to sleep the sleep of just person in a turpentine-filled room.