Review: The Sentence of Anna

The Sentence of Anna
The Sentence of Anna by A.H. Scott

My rating: 1 of 5 stars

Anna loves to flirt with Valery, her lover’s best friend. Philippe is a wealthy Duke who plucked peasant Anna from obscurity. Anna is the current mistress for the past three years. She is with Philippe because he shows her the good life. He’s neither a good lover nor particularly handsome, but he does shower Anna with luxuries.

This historical romance is written in an unwieldy style. The writer’s voice is drowned out with purple prose and too many adjectives. Flowery wording does not equate to a flowing smooth writing voice. It is one thing for the characters’ dialog to contain flamboyant speech; it’s another thing when the entire story and narration is crammed with flashy words which jar the reader out of the story.

The concept of this story is okay. We find Anna cheating on Philippe, getting caught and then punished. The punishment and the illicit sex could be steamier. The excessive usage of purple prose changes what could be smexy into something silly. It would be better if the A.H. Scott focus on a cleaner dialog with more showing rather than telling. The changing point of views between the three characters also distracts from the storyline.

It appears A.H. Scott writes more poetry than stories. To write a story in poetry form is not easy. In this, my recommendation would be to avoid it. It almost comes across as if the writer’s native tongue is not English. If this is the case, it would explain the odd sentence structures. For example: Colors of the oncoming night were absorbed by her blue eyes. Being at this villa, Anna felt a sense of peace. These two sentences are constructed in an awkward manner. The entire story is written this way. The reason why it doesn’t flow is more than just the passive voice. It’s because there is a flip in standard positioning of the subject and predicate. This is what leads me to believe English is not A.H. Scott’s native tongue. Specifically in Mandarin Chinese, we find the predicate preceding the subject. I know this from my translations between Chinese to English and vice versa.

A. H. Scott shows potential in the erotic themes. The execution of it needs a bit of work for reader enjoyment.

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