Monday, September 13, 2010

My latest Oz reading

Unfortunately, I can't tell you what Oz book I just finished, because it's one that's available only on the Oz underground, if you know the right people, because it uses elements from books that are still under copyright, and so technically this is an illegal book. But what I can tell you is that it's a modern reprint of an older book, written by a prominent and well-known Oz fanfic author. It appears that this edition was put together from an original copy that went through an optical character reader. For those not as geeky as me, that's a program that "reads" a book or other written work on a scanner, and then creates a text file based on that. They've gotten a lot better than the earliest ones I'm familiar with, as this text usually made sense. There were a few instances, however, of strange capitalizations or punctuations creeping in, or almost-but-not-quite right words being used, which led me to think that one more good pass from a copy editor would have been a big help.

As for the story itself, what I can say is that, like so many fan-written books, it is so enamored of its own logic and background that it doesn't always succeed in being a successful Oz book. It also has so many story threads going on that it's hard to keep track of them all until they finally start weaving together at the end.

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