I’m only a few pages into the new Delta Green novel, Denied to the Enemy, and I will no doubt finish it. However, I am overwhelmed with a strange compulsion to rant. First I will quote.
Before he joined in 1938 he was frightened almost all of the time. Oh now, how he missed those innocent days. Since his induction into the group Bruning was in a constant state of paranoia and fear. The things he had seen! The way his world had changed in under one year! He had a skill you see, a talent with language which was necessary for the group to achieve its goals. Bruning had studied many ancient tongues and was lettered in three very difficult ones. In addition he had a skill with cyphers, something developed during a stint at Oxford and his study of the works of John Dee. If only he was not so clever! His mind, something he had considered a blessing in his murky past now was a terrible weapon at the disposal of the Reich, and although the intangible front he fought upon was won or lost through the study of words, of meanings and innuendoes and secrets, the casualties caused by such battles were real enough.
I, too, suffer from the affliction of the comma abuser. I, too, use commas to extend a sentence far past its healthy conclusion. But man. I think the problem here is as much the absence of commas in key locations as the overuse of them. This is disappointing, particularly insofar as the novel comes from a company known for meticulous editing and painstaking care.
Not to mention, if you’ll pardon the interruption, there’s, unfortunately, another editing problem, which, I believe, should be corrected as follows: If only he were not so clever!
Yeah, and the use of something twice in three sentences… it’s pretty awful.