- Richard Laymon, The Lake (2004) — One of the three posthumous Laymon novels, this one was the farthest from being ready for publication.
- Jack Ketchum, Weed Species (2006) — Ketchum is known for his extreme character portraits, but this one fails from a lack of an interesting story.
- Ed McBain, The Frumious Bandersnatch (2003) — McBain's 87th Precinct series is always readable, but the author's obvious lack of knowledge about modern music makes this one a struggle.
- Sara Gruen, Water for Elephants (2006) — An interesting story about quirky characters is hampered by a completely unbelievable protagonist's inability to ground the odd occurrences in reality.
- ...but the biggest disappointment of 2008 was the nine-book Star Wars: Legacy of the Force series by Aaron Allston, Karen Traviss, and Troy Denning (2006–2008). Nine books over a two-year period conclude with an ending telegraphed from the beginning and completely predictable even by Star Wars standards? There were some high points, notably Traviss's work in Bloodlines and Sacrifice, but I'll not again invest in the anticipation game. Any more series are going to have to be finished before I start them.
Sunday, February 1, 2009
This is a different kind of list. This one consists of those books that I had great expectations for going in, and really fell short in one way or another.