A chicken that was not a chicken

This passage is from Terry Goodkind’s Soul of the Fire (maybe I should add that Goodkind does not have an ironic bone in his body. Everything he says, he means in the most serious way possible):

Hissing, hackles lifting, the chicken’s head rose. Kahlan pulled back. Its claws digging into stiff dead flesh, the chicken slowly turned to face her. It cocked its head, making its comb flop, its wattles sway. “Shoo,” Kahlan heard herself whisper. There wasn’t enough light, and besides, the side of its beak was covered with gore, so she couldn’t tell if it had the dark spot, But she didn’t need to see it. “Dear spirits, help me,” she prayed under her breath. The bird let out a slow chicken cackle. It sounded like a chicken, but in her heart she knew it wasn’t. In that instant, she completely understood the concept of a chicken that was not a chicken. This looked like a chicken, like most of the Mud People’s chickens. But this was no chicken. This was evil manifest.

7 thoughts on “A chicken that was not a chicken

  1. I did not, honestly, find it well written at all. It’s not so much badly written though as fantastically hilarious. I felt it’s like a very, very mean parody of a certain kind of style, but your mileage may vary, of course.

  2. I am less academic than you are!!! No PhD, no, nothing other than liking what I read – or not… 🙂

  3. Oh, PhD (which I am still in the process of acquiring) has depressingly little to do with that. You would not believe the nonsense that my fellow candidates are reading. And I am probably biased, as I am not a fan of the writer. At all.

    • Afraid I had never heard of him until today and not particularly interested in wasting my time with him when there are so many magnificent books to be read. A lifetime just isn’t enough. 🙂

  4. It’s rather juvenile writing at best. It makes me wonder about the professional standard of editors and proofreaders in traditional publishing houses, because with writing like this (and having seen similar writing from other traditionally published authors) it seems considerably low. Granted there are talented writers who are traditionally published, but clearly Goodkind isn’t one of them if his style continues to follow this example.

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