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Questioning the veracity of this breaking book news:

 
 
Reply Sat 13 Jul, 2013 07:30 pm
Quote:
J.K. Rowling’s secret crime novel. Has been out since April.

http://joehillsthrills.tumblr.com/post/55382957782/most-amazing-*******-news-ever-j-k-rowlings

The claim states that JK Rowling has published a very well recieved mystery book under the author name, Robert Galbraith, titled The Cuckoo's Calling.

Do you care about these type of publishing revelations? What do you do when you find out your favorite novelist has published under a different name? When an author you hate has written a book you liked or loved under a pseudonym? Etc....
 
boomerang
 
  3  
Reply Sat 13 Jul, 2013 08:27 pm
@tsarstepan,
It doesn't really bother me since there are very few authors I'm religious about reading.

In Rowlings case, it kind of makes sense for her to use a pseudonym. Her last book was well received by critics but loathed by Harry Potter fans. Using a pseudonym surely gives her some artistic license to try something different.

I really hate it when an author I love writes something that I don't like. For instance -- I used to love John Irving and read everything he wrote, then one book left me "meh" and the next one I didn't even bother finishing and that's when I decided that following a specific writer wasn't a good idea.
Lustig Andrei
 
  1  
Reply Sat 13 Jul, 2013 11:24 pm
Like Boomer,I don't get emotional about the writers I read. What's in a name? I'm interested in the quality of the work; I don't actually care if it might have been ghost-written.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Sun 14 Jul, 2013 02:57 am
@boomerang,
These are good points. Michael Crichton originally published under the name John Lange, and was a practicing physician at the time--apparently, he thought being a novelists was inconsistent with the gravitas of the medical profession in the 1960's. One of his novels, about an abortion (very hot topic in the late 60s) was such a critical success that he began publishing under his own name (the novel, A Case of Need, was re-published in 1993 under Crichton's own name), and The Andromeda Strain was enough of a success that he could give up the practice of medicine to write full time. He wrote an awful lot of BS, but he's a good story teller, so i forgive him.

One's tastes change over time, too. In the last few years, i've re-read several novels, and series of novels by certain authors. I've re-read several of the novels by David Cornwell (writes under the pen name John le Carré), and have been less impressed than i had been in the past, especially as i read them one after another recently. There is a narrative technique of his which i find annoying. He will drop into his narrative a remark such as "later, it was said that Smiley . . . " or, ". . . at Sarrat, they said that Smiley . . . " I find it tedious and just wish he'd get on with the story. Joseph Conrad employs the technique much more successfully. He has a character, Charles Marlow, who narrates several of his stories and novels; Marlow is the central character in Youth--it is his youth he is recounting. Most readers will have encountered Marlow as the narrator of Lord Jim. But Conrad introduces Marlow and other characters, and then lets Marlow get on with the narration. I dislike Cornwell's habit of dropping such remarks into the story line.

I first noticed this in my early 30s when i re-read Starship Trooper. It just wasn't the novel i recalled. Then i re-read Farnham's Freehold, and was frankly disgusted by Heinlein. He is elitist, racist, sexist and "agist" (only middle aged or old men really know the score). He's a good story teller, and i will forgive much for that. But if i find a Heinlein novel i haven't read, i can get through it pretty quickly. My eyes start to glaze over when i get to one of his long passages of preaching the gospel of his version of libertarianism, so i skip through to where the story resumes. Saves me the trouble of reading about half the book.

There can be other factors, too. There is an idea called the Fermi paradox. Without going into detail, it's a load of old horsie poop. However, the consideration of it lead me to question the basis of most science fiction. So much of it depends on avoiding the implications of the speed of light, so that authors either present a pretext for fast travel in the galaxy (as Herbert does in his Dune novels), or they simply just assume it. That's fantasy, not science fiction. Marion Zimmer Bradley, in several of the prefaces to her books about Darkover describes her writing as science fantasy. I appreciate the honesty, and can proceed to enjoy a good story teller. I've only read a few good science fiction works which i felt did not stray into fantasy. Those are the Mars novels (Red Mars, Green Mars and Blue Mars) and The Forever War by Joe Haldeman. The Mars series does no violence to science, and is fascinating within those reasonable constraints. The Forever War, which won the Nugo award one year and the Nebula award the following year, does what science fiction does best, examining social and moral issues. It does it with an interesting twist. The soldiers in this war, male and female, are transported to their bases or to attack enemy bases, at relativistic speeds. In the end, the forever war lasts 1200 years--but the soldiers who survive had only aged about 25 years. A great read which i highly recommend.

Some authors stand up well to such re-reading scrutiny. I continee to enjoy Marion Zimmer Bradley and P. D. James. Others fail that test--David Cornwell, Tom Robbins and John Irving, to name but a few.

The upshot is, though, that there is just no pastime quite as rich and rewarding as reading.
contrex
 
  1  
Reply Sun 14 Jul, 2013 03:35 am
I have never been able to read much of Orson Scott Card - I don't know if it's the (not very) buried Mormon propaganda that puts me off, or just that I don't like his writing style. Gene Wolfe, I liked some of his short stories, and I still like Greg Benford's 'Timescape'. As for science fiction that blatantly pisses all over scientific plausibility for the sake of a good yarn, an excellent example is 'Tau Zero' by James Blish (spacecraft landing on electrons, orbiting - and thus avoiding - the Big Crunch, etc). L Ron Hubbard belongs in a special category of bad.
contrex
 
  1  
Reply Sun 14 Jul, 2013 03:40 am
@Setanta,
Setanta wrote:
and was frankly disgusted by Heinlein. He is elitist, racist, sexist and "agist" (only middle aged or old men really know the score). He's a good story teller, and i will forgive much for that. But if i find a Heinlein novel i haven't read, i can get through it pretty quickly. My eyes start to glaze over when i get to one of his long passages of preaching the gospel of his version of libertarianism, so i skip through to where the story resumes. Saves me the trouble of reading about half the book.


I feel the same way. Have you ever read "The Iron Dream", by Norman Spinrad, where he imagines a parallel universe in which Adolf Hitler emigrated to the US in 1919 and became a science fiction writer? in an early edition, actual science fiction writers wrote faux sincere "admiring" blurbs for Spinrad for the novel's back cover blurbs, praising "Hitler"'s writing skills.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Sun 14 Jul, 2013 08:48 am
@contrex,
Card is another whack job "libertarian" in the vein of Heinlein. I enjoyed Ender's Game, although i found it pretty obvious. I tried to read the sequel, and couldn't finish it--it was too silly. Thereafter, i paid no attention to him until some kid was waxing euphoric about him online, and i went to look at his web site. He's a tool.
0 Replies
 
mysteryman
 
  2  
Reply Sun 14 Jul, 2013 11:56 am
On the flip side, what do you do when an author you don't like writes a book you do like?

L. Ron Hubbard is best known as the founder of Scientology, but he started his career as a science fiction writer
He wrote on of my favorite science fiction novels ever, a book titled "Battlefield Earth".
It was later made into an absolutely horrible movie with John Travolta, but that's beside the point.

For a true science fiction fan, its a great novel. In the preface to the book, he explains exactly what the difference is between sci-fi and fantasy.

If you like sci-fi novels,
I suggest reading it.
boomerang
 
  2  
Reply Sun 14 Jul, 2013 12:49 pm
Quote:
On Amazon.com, sales soared more than 507,000% after Rowling acknowledged being the author.


http://www.cnn.com/2013/07/14/world/rowling-secret-book/index.html?hpt=hp_t3
contrex
 
  1  
Reply Sun 14 Jul, 2013 01:40 pm
@contrex,
Amended:

contrex wrote:
As for science fiction that blatantly (and elegantly) pisses all over scientific plausibility for the sake of a good yarn, an excellent example is 'Tau Zero' by James Blish (spacecraft landing on electrons, orbiting - and thus avoiding - the Big Crunch, etc).

0 Replies
 
contrex
 
  1  
Reply Sun 14 Jul, 2013 01:46 pm
@mysteryman,
mysteryman wrote:

a book titled "Battlefield Earth".


if that's the one about the Psychlo occupation of Earth, for me there were too many "gee-whiz" gadgets and "magic" plot elements - breathe-gas conveniently reacting violently with uranium, the magic old-light-ray viewer, the matter transporter, etc. Of course that type of thing is not unique to Hubbard, and I did finish the book.
0 Replies
 
laughoutlood
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Jul, 2013 02:17 am
@tsarstepan,
Quote:
very well recieved


By George , you're onto something, imagine the economics if he'd called himself Ken.
0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Jul, 2013 05:55 am
@boomerang,
I expected a rise in book sales with the revelation but that number seems insanely astronomical. Now that could be a great reason making this (read perhaps too cynical) the true marketing gambit behind this nom de plume.

Since she's so wealthy, I don't think she needs the money and I tend to believe that she did it initially to avoid any preconception towards the book's style, etc....
0 Replies
 
rosborne979
 
  2  
Reply Mon 15 Jul, 2013 07:16 am
@tsarstepan,
Any time I see a "leak" like this which results in the publisher and the author making a whole lot more money, it makes me wonder if the leak and the original subterfuge aren't just part of the money-making process.

In this case I think JK also had some person reasons for wanting to be anonymous for at least a period of time, but there was no real downside or risk to her doing it, so it was probably a no-lose play to make. So who wouldn't do that?
0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Mon 15 Jul, 2013 05:55 pm
How J.K. Rowling’s Pseudonym Was Uncovered
http://www.vulture.com/2013/07/how-jk-rowlings-pseudonym-was-uncovered.html
0 Replies
 
 

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