All Reviews You might want to skip that (2 or less stars)

Black Leopard, Red Wolf, by Marlon James

0 stars. The characters talk only in riddles, everything is about sex (and rape, and mutilating children), and I can’t find the plot.

0 out of 5 stars

I have to admit that I only read up until page 110, and it cost me a lot of time to even get there. I finally lost my shit when the protagonist just skipped the search for the missing child for a few months (or was it years? I’m not sure, because that’s when I lost my cool) to live in a town.

I guess if you are hired to find a missing child, losing a few months to do totally unrelated stuff is the natural thing to do, right? Right?

Honestly, I had a feeling the story was just made up as we tacked along, like you’re inventing a bedtime story while you tell it. No coherence, or I was too stupid to find it.

The one thing that kept me reading was this thought: »Hey, hurry up with the crazy stuff, there is a child to be found and rescued.«

Of course, that went completely out of the window when our main protagonist abandoned the search. And I followed along with abandoning the book.

Up until then, I had the nagging feeling that most of the story revolved around about men sleeping with men. Which is a natural thing to do (minus the shape shifting into a leopard), no sweat, but not what I signed up for when I got told this book would be like an African Lord of the Rings.

Imagine Lord of the Rings, but the first quarter of the book would mostly be Sam and Frodo groping each other along the way (while not trusting each other), and without any idea where they even want to go.

And then Frodo forgets about the ring, splits with Sam and goes to live in Bree for a while.

So, sorry, but not my cup of tea. And if you expected – like me – an African LOTR, then do yourself a favor and – unlike me – skip this book altogether.

By Stefan

father of two, not enough time to read everything I want to read

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