"They were toast"
This is a fun and quick read. You can really feel the influence Douglas Adams, Alice in Wonderland and The Little Prince had in this story. There are some truly giggle-worthy moments in the book, mostly in the tradition of said influences - nonsense uttered in complete seriousness, and completely mad characters.
However, there were some things that bothered me. First, the book needs more proofing - there is the occasional missing or misspelled word and there are some grammar issues that just need careful tending. The short length of it only emphasizes the few problems.
Secondly, it was lacking in show, not tell and general background information. To this moment, I have no idea how Neville looks like, how old is he, or who he is. Worse yet, one character is described as "about his age and about his height", which tells us nothing. The action scene at the end is also baffling, and I can't picture it. I think quite a few ideas could have been expanded, like the movement in space, for example. The way they are presented now creates holes in the plot and deus-ex-machina moments. It could have been viewed as nonsensical, if it was used more profusely and if the wording was different.
Third, and I'm not a big science geek or anything, but even within the book there were inconsistencies in logic (even the nonsense in Alice had some internal logic to it). I had a few huh?! moments that weren't appeased at all, and some I had to think over and find the logic myself. Something the reader could avoid doing with better showing. Inconsistencies weren't only in logic, but also in story telling - one moment an object is held in place, and the next it moves without it being let go.
I have to be honest, I missed the allegories and the satire until I read some of the other reviews. I may have caught on myself in a 2nd or 3rd reading, but once I read the other reviews it was easy to spot. So catching on late is probably my fault :p.
All in all, although it has its flaws, Doodling is a cute story and a fun, fast read. If it had been longer: 1. Maybe most of the issues would have been resolved and thus it would have received a higher rating, 2. if not, it would have gotten a lower one.
"The roar of the world was like the sound of a hundred rock bands all playing at the same time, only much, much louder"
Received the ebook for free through the summer hop giveaway at Jonathan Gould's blog Dag-Lit Central.