The Help, I'm looking at you) Yes, there are times when a brief appearance of another language or dialect is warranted, even welcomed, in the context of a greater story. I'm fine with that. But for an entire book, published in 2002, to be written as if it were an unearthed document from the 1660s is just plain annoying.
Sam had left me the cottage and the sheepfold behind, but they had nicked his stowe the day they brought his body out of the mine. I told him that day that they need not wait to nick it again, for three weeks, six weeks, or nine, I could neither shore his fallen walls nor was I in purse to have another do it. pg34
At age five and twenty, Elinor Mompellion had the fragile beauty of a child. She was all pale and pearly, her hair a fine, fair nimbus around skin so sheer that you could see the veins pulsing at her temples. Even her eyes were pale, a white-washed blue like a winter sky. pg35
Not only do these sentences sound contrived (it takes place in the 1600s, okay I get it, you don't have to beat me over the head with it) but the similes and metaphors give me a rash.
Shakespeare and his contemporaries wrote some beautiful prose because they lived it. Charles Dickens and The Bronte sisters wrote some beautiful Victorian literature because they lived it. Authors should write well, write what they know, and leave some of the imagination up to the reader.