Myth-gotten Gains

January 9, 2017 at 6:00 pm (Reads) (, , )

gainsMyth-gotten Gains by Robert Asprin & Jody Lynn Nye

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So, the first thing I noticed when I started reading this book is that it’s lacking the fake quotes at the start of each chapter. I remember reading years ago that Asprin took as much time coming up with those quotes as he did writing the novels, so I suppose I knew it was coming. It’s a further sign that the later books aren’t really in the same class as the early books, and another sign that artists can’t go back and recapture what made their early works unique.

In this novel, we go back to Aahz as our first-person narrator, and as in Myth-taken Identity, it doesn’t feel right. This time, he buys a talking sword that leads him to other talking treasures, all of which make up the legendary Golden Hoard. Aahz’s motivation here is the promise that one of them will be able to restore his magikal powers. Of course, nothing goes strictly as planned, and that’s how the caper is run.

I was disappointed in the title, since it’s not quite a pun; the phrase is “misbegotten gains”. I suppose that looked a little weird on the cover, though, and doesn’t quite roll off the tongue. It was a sticking point for me, though. The whole book was rather boring, too. It didn’t have the kind of charm of the other books, and even though Tananda also features in the story with Aahz, it felt like this was just Aahz doing his thing.

That speaks to a larger issue I have with these co-authored books, which is that Tananda just takes on the role of the sex kitten. Whatever personality she had in the original books has been excised, which is weird, since Nye is now co-authoring the books. I felt like her influence made Massha a better character, but if that were the case, then why didn’t it roll over to Tananda, as well?

The number of typos in this book is embarrassing, not just because they’re there, but also because credit is given on the verso page to the company that copyedited and proofread the book. I’d think that if my company’s name were attached to a project, I would make more of an effort than this, but at least they were consistent; instead of semicolons, they put an apostrophe instead.

I only have a few more books to go in the series, and they appear to be pretty short, so I’ll persevere, but these aren’t nearly as interesting as the earlier books. Maybe the nostalgia carried more weight with those books than I realized.

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