All the things I correct and point out to my critique partners are present here in spades. Passive voice? Check. Adverb abuse? Check. Overuse of modifiers? Check. Repetitive sentence structure? Check. Massive info dumps of backstory in the first chapter? Check. If this book had been posted in my critique forum, it would be slashed with purple (I write my notes in purple; it's may favorite color).
Whenever I read books like this, I wonder how hard and fast you have to stick to the rules. I mean, if that person got published, then XXXX writing sin can't be that bad. Or do the rules change once you have one book under your belt? It's not that the writing is bad, it's just not as good as I would expect in a published book.
Maybe I'm too critical. Maybe I spend so much time working on other peoples' books, and on my own, I've lost the knack of just reading. Maybe before I started writing and critiquing so seriously, I wouldn't even have noticed these things.
Do you ever ask these questions while you're reading? Does it make you crazy?