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Book One of These Things is Not Like the Other by D.Travers Scott (2006-10-31)

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One of These Things is Not Like the Other by D.Travers Scott (2006-10-31)

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    D.Travers Scott(Author)

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  • D.Travers Scott(Author)
  • Suspect Thoughts Press (1638)
  • Unknown
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Review Text

  • By Furio on September 6, 2006

    In this novel Mr Scott apparently wants to deal with some difficult issues: identity, sexual identity, personal versus general good, family love (or lack of it).Problem is, he begins it with what looks like an exercise in style, throwing heaps of incredibly complex and ermetic thoughts in a fine but highly convoluted prose, committing what I personally deem to be the first and worst sin for a writer: to forget that literature of any kind has to entertain the reader in the first place.I guess this complexity is what earns him the praise of many critics, a species known to esteem fiction only if they cannot understand a word of it, but I cannot accept to spend a couple of minutes on a single short sentence simply to understand it. Of course I am not talking about the exquisite device of multiple meanings through which an apparently plain paragraph hides a number of subtle and exciting possibilities of interpretation, I am talking about simply putting the syntax straight.While I usually prefer neat, fluid, accurate writing, rich in beauty and elegance I have nothing against a well drawn stream of consciousness, as long as I can spend my reading time enjoying truth and depth of thought and not feeling silly and illiterate because I am not sure what all the strange words are all about.Later on things get better but even though the story is interesting enough and the writing fine, they are not THAT interesting and not THAT fine.First I could never suspend disbelief. We have four twins, sons to a lunatic with unexplained ESP powers, butchering each other after discovering that one of them is a fake (?), son to someone else. It is not an easy assumption but it could have been interesting if well developped. Here it is not. Everything just sounds strained.A horror is supposed to have supernatural elements, but we see relatively little horror and many attempts at a rather erratic psychology: we are given no explanation how four loving brothers, allied since childhood against their crazed father, suddenly become so estranged as to distrust each other. We do not see why the fake had to go berserk in the first place. We do not see too many things.We are not faced with a thrilling masterpiece, nor with an interesting psychological study nor with outstandingly beautiful language.All in all it seems to me very lame and therefore a waste of time.

  • By J.M. Snyder on June 28, 2008

    When I started reading the book, I was very tempted to put it down. It's a bit heavy-handed at first, particularly for a writer like me who likes to write out the details and leave nothing out. The story seems as though it would be confusing ~ four brothers, all with the same name and the same appearance as their father, discover upon his death that one of them is not in fact related to the others.However, the only confusion I came across was early on in the story, during an internet conference with all four brothers. For the rest of the story, though, there was little confusion ~ the brothers called each other by the places where they lived, and each chapter was devoted to one brother only (with the exception of the first and the last).Without giving much of the story away, each brother secretly hopes that he's the one who's different. I can imagine growing up with three carbon copies of yourself would make anyone wish for some distinguishing trait to separate you from the rest. So in an effort to be their own men, the brothers have tried very hard to distance themselves from their siblings. The "main" brother (I guess you can call him that, as the story starts and ends with him) is gay.Personally I would've liked more explicit scenes ~ not just sex, but other parts were glossed over and I'm one who likes it spelled out. I wanted to know how the father managed to keep all four brothers identical if one of them was not his flesh and blood. I wanted to see the scene where the sheriff comforts the West Hollywood brother (natch). I wanted to see what happened when the WeHo brother confronted his Alaska brother (who was in the closet, so to speak). Little things like that would've added to the story for me.As the story wound towards the conclusion, I'll admit it was a real page-turner, and I'm glad I didn't let the early language deter me from reading more. I found myself wanting to devour the book, which made me flip to the end numerous times to see how things played out with a particular piece of the plot (this is why I don't read mystery or suspense much, because I hate waiting for the payoff and jump ahead just to satisfy my own curiosity). It was almost like a Stephen King novel, that level of intensity, with an openly gay character that just added to the fun.So yeah, great read. Unfortunately I have to give this copy away next weekend, but if you're looking for a spooky read, give this one a try. I don't think you'll be disappointed.

  • By Salvatore Sapienza on April 8, 2006

    First off, I have to say that this is not typically the genre of writing I normally gravitate toward. Truth be told, I'm more drawn to gay relationship novels. That said, "One of These Things..." actually fits into several genres - or maybe none at all. It's its own weird and wonderful entity, and I loved it for that. Yes, it's a mystery, but it's also about family, brotherhood, sexuality. It creeped me out at times, turned me on at times - sometimes at the same time! - yet kept my attention throughout. It's best not to go into too many plot details. Part of the fun is in the discovery. D. Travers Scott is a clever, smart, and imaginative writer, and this book a real page-turner.


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