I was thinking about this recently about books that have influenced me over the years and while I can list many I realise there's one book in particular that I've totally forgotten the name of. While some well written books have really got me into writing, others have had the opposite effect, but there was one book in particular that taught me how to write in a particular style whilst avoiding cliches. To sum it up the story was terrible, a layer of cliches upon cliches, with a completely predicable ending, yet at the same time it was a real page turner, a very easy read.
The story is about a man who has an apartment in South America. It is soon to be Mardi Gras and the president is going to attend a parade so a group of terrorists decide it's the best time to assassinate him. The best location to shoot him from is within the man's apartment so a female terrorist befriends the man and tricks him into falling in love with her. If I remember rightly her name was Maria. She then reveals her plans to him but he is smitten with her so goes along with the plan and allows the terrorists to use his apartment. The assassination goes wrong and they are all on the run and hide within a cave. One by one each terrorist is caught and gets shot by the police apart from the main character and Maria who catch a plane to North America.
Every inch of Maria is detailed, her wide gummy smile, her wavy raven hair, her button nose, her hourglass figure, the shape of her swollen nipples, the shape of her breasts and the wiggle of her walk. Bare in mind this isn't an erotica, she was never naked in a single scene. The men are described as a bearded man, a moustached man, a smooth shaven man, etc. The one thing that stands out the most of me is the scene where they hide within a cave. It's pouring with rain at the time and while essentially nothing happens, other than exploring the cave and getting muddy, it's an entire chapter and was far more detailed than the events leading up to it.
While the plot was completely far fetched and the ending predictable it was still such an enjoyable read. It's both a lesson on how not to write a book and how to not write one at the same time. It may have been a cliche but if that was what the author intended then it was a masterpiece.