A discussion we were having:
Just because a book doesn’t read like the author cut a vein and bled all over the page doesn’t mean it’s not a good book, although it’s probably not the kind of book I necessarily want to read.
I like to feel like the author was there, and they were having deep, personal feelings while they were writing the book. I don’t want to feel their hand in it, I don’t want to feel their authorness (whatever that is) (but you know what I mean), but I do want a sense of what went into it. I want to finish a book and know the author died on the page and then was reborn again.
But sometimes you could just die from the research (because that can take forever and be a lot to hold in your head), and sometimes you could just die from the crafting of the sentence (because not everyone is born with rhythm), and sometimes you could just die from finding that perfect metaphor (because being original is hard and definitely not a given in this life), and sometimes you could just die from building an air tight structure (because we are not all spatial), and I will even allow that punctuation could probably kill someone (because I have nearly died a hundred times from a misplaced comma).
All those things can make a book good, maybe even make a good book great. All those things have varying degrees of importance in the universe of readers.
But I just kind of like it when it feels like the writer had a little bit of a nervous breakdown while they were writing the book. I find that comforting and I’m not even going to pretend to apologize for it.