Freedom of the Creed by N.L. Coleridge – Western Wednesday Book Review for March

I received a free advanced reader’s copy of this book from the author in exchange for a review. Thankyou, Mr Coleridge, for the opportunity to read this story.

I am sorry to find myself honestly unable to rate this book higher than “It was ok.”

I found the main character rather unlikable, increasingly so as the story went along, eventually thinking her perhaps almost as twisted as some of the ‘bad guys’ she encounters – definitely, to my mind, more of an anti-hero than a hero. She is a strong-minded character, but she’s not a nice character. One of the bad guys in particular is really quite awful, and most characters I found difficult to like or care about. This is okay, but I would have preferred to have had someone ‘good-ish’ that was easier to root for.
Perhaps some more humour would have helped.

I also, and this, I hope, may have been corrected in the published draft, but I found numerous editorial problems, missing commas, missing connecting words, a couple of editorial notes to self left in the text, etc. which were quite distracting to me as a reader. Again, I suspect many of these problems have been fixed for the published book, and perhaps if they had been fixed in the draft I read I would have enjoyed this story more.

The story is told from multiple points of view, and the bouncing between the viewpoints was not particularly to my taste, but that is a question of style and individual tastes and I’m sure some other readers would find it perfectly their flavour.

I guess, in general, this book just wasn’t written in a style that I really appreciated.

Some of the action is quite well done, easy to follow, moves well, exciting. There were a few plot twists that took me by surprise. I liked the idea of having a vengeful woman on the path of a sleazy bunch of outlaws, set to deal out her brand of justice upon them, whether they liked it or not.

This was not a terrible book, and again, if the copy I had read had been more polished, I can imagine that it would have been more enjoyable, although I would still have likely not really liked the main character, or found anything funny in it, and that would still have been a significant downside for me. Other reader’s mileage clearly varies, as this book has in general been quite highly rated. It just didn’t do anything in particular for me.

I did appreciate the chance to give it try.

I give this book two cowboy hats out of a possible five.

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