Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Author Fired by Former Fan

"...yet so as to transfer from our inward nature a human interest and a semblance of truth sufficient to procure for these shadows of imagination that willing suspension of disbelief for the moment, which constitutes poetic faith." --Samuel Taylor Coleridge his autobiography, Biographia Literaria.
How to Cheat a Dragon's Curse
as told to Cressida Cowell
the fourth book in the Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III series

I was willing to believe in the Vikings, the dragons, the sea creatures, the unlikely ways that Hiccup gets into and out of trouble, the crazy names, the language Dragonese, the holiday of Freya'sday Fete. I was a little irritated that she named a character "Big-Boobied Bertha." She really didn't need to stoop that low in the potty-mouth humor department, but I could handle it. I've read the ROTTEN SCHOOL series, after all.

Cressida Cowell completely lost me as a reader and a fan and a future book purchaser when, at the very end of the book, she writes this about an arrow that had been stuck in a potato:
"...I buried the arrow which saved my life in some muddy ground behind my house, and, miracle of miracles! A single seed must have been sticking to the metal!

For some time later, in the springtime, I noticed a strange green plant in that particular spot, and I dug the arrow up again. A new potato, larger than the one I lost, had grown right around the arrow's point."
POTATOES DO NOT GROW FROM LITTLE TINY SINGLE SEEDS THAT STICK TO ARROW TIPS! THEY GROW FROM CHUNKS OF SEED POTATOES!

I am completely willing to suspend my disbelief for all kinds of fantastic inventions an author creates in a story. I will not, however, suspend my knowledge of the way the real world works. Ms. Cowell, you're fired, and I suggest you get a new editor.

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