Wednesday, 20 June 2012
“He probably means a bestiary.”
“I think you mean bestiality.”
“Nope, pretty sure I don’t.”
Excelsior, fellow book lovers!
Sometimes I wonder why my books haven't asked for my parents' blessings yet.
You don't need to know who I am. Only that I like things. Like books. I am also a bookseller, which is why my hands are so dry to the point of them peeling off like snake-skin.
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“He probably means a bestiary.”
“I think you mean bestiality.”
“Nope, pretty sure I don’t.”
This is a note for the new souls reading my reviews for the first time; there are always spoilers.
Author: Meadows, Jodi
Keywords: Self discovery, identity, new soul, no soul, god, Janaan, religion, creation, dragons, sylphs, science, teen fantasy, love, romance, masquerade, reincarnation.
Recommended For: 13+
Sentence: I sentence Jodi Meadows to those awkward running-on-the-spot moments, in dreams, where you can’t seem to move away as fast as you’d like.
Review: So this book is not about a girl in a dystopian society being a butterfly. Points for surprising me Meadows, I actually had no idea what I was getting into. Well, I did hear a rumour about dragons, but then assumed some sort of Eragon business was all up in this (whatever this is).
That being said, this does not qualify as a DYSTOPIAN or POST-APOCALYPTIC read, unless everyone else who read this was reading some alternative version of it. Maybe a version where Meadows reveals something to indicate this takes place post-our-kind-of-humans rather than beginning of our-kind-of-humans with a million immortal assclowns to rub it in our faces.
But I’m digressing from the matter at hand. Ana: abused, soft-spoken, clever, too honest, easy to read, and a newbie at life, apparently. She’s like a child that’s been given too much candy and is crashing, all the time.
Yeah, she’s pretty fucking boring. I mean, come on, her favourite things are music (like the music that hasn’t been created yet, in her head) and eating honey from the pot. Oh bother, Ana’s not a newsoul after all, she’s hipster Winnie the Pooh.
And Sam is like a justified pedophile. Damn those teenage hormones and him being attracted to only individuals of his physical age (as clarified by Ana when doing some research on, big surprise, not her own origins).
Now it may seem like I’m overly criticizing a book I gave 3.5 plums to (so more than my “meh” rating), but I actually genuinely enjoyed the writing; the funny bits that weren’t really jokes so much a contemplation of the hilarity of it all; and the story, which is new and still getting started, much like Ana.
I could focus on what’s great about the this story: it’s different for teen fiction and fantasy; there are dragons and other mythical creatures; Sam may have taken Ana under his wing, but she actually doesn’t want to have to depend on him for everything; although attracted to each other almost immediately, Ana and Sam fall into like first and are comfortable doing friend things; matching souls (in love) are not always the same age and can be the same sex (not a planned or fated feel); Sam is afraid of dragons and not all that brave; and Ana, for all her fast learning and cleverness, is impulsive and sometimes the stupid kind of brave when Sam is in danger. But I’d rather touch on the things that I disliked or that drove me crazy.
First off, I’ll start with Ana leaving her Janan-forsaken “mother” at the age of 18. I feel like it’s an ad for porn/Girls Gone Wild (“I’m Ana and I’m 18 years old”). Everything that happens after that has to be legal, after all she’s of age. Though I suppose those rules don’t apply on this strange one-city-world. I understand there’s always been a million reincarnated souls, but it isn’t really clear whether they’re all in the Range and Heart. But I suppose that would be too densely populated.
Secondly, what is up with the pulsing wall and why is no one acknowledging it? I really do not understand. Can only newsouls see it? Which brings me to my next issue on how Ana fails at research. She doesn’t even begin with her own background, she must first familiarize herself with Sam’s. Then, when her parents’ journals are missing she doesn’t think to look at the books scattered all over the floor of Sam’s bedroom. Really? Please let’s be less ADD about this and focus on the task at hand. That last sentence is actually pretty hypocritical since I went searching for a funny “focus” picture and ended up browsing Pinterest for an hour. So, no funny pictures for you.
Anyway, Ana does not discover how she is created on her own. She is told by her father who happens to be stalking her because he pretty much is obsessed with creating more newsouls. Creepy. But what’s really annoying about all this is that there really isn’t an explanation for how Menehem tainted the temple or what Janan really is (certainly isn’t a god if it’s imperfect, by human definitions).
I’ll admit that Jodi Meadows had much world building to do and some explanation, so I’ll allow the slow beginning, but then the story picked up and everything happened all at once and it ended. And I was so frustrated (mostly in a why-haven’t-they-had-sex-yet way).
If I had to make suggestions for the next book I would include: Ana and Sam have sex (because they’ve been living together for weeks, the least they could do is pretend that not being all over each other is hard); more page time with other characters (there is too much of Ana and Sam, even when Ana and Sam aren’t together); and Ana standing up for herself more. She doesn’t know what or who she is and yet she is growing into an identity that readers can recognize. But she needs to stand up for herself, figure out things on her own rather than be handed answers and getting distracted by Sam.
Ugh, who am I kidding? I thought it was all kind of sweet. Especially when she uses her bluntness and honesty as a weapon of getting shit done. It must be the week before that time of the month.
Okay, I seriously can’t focus on this review anymore, so I’m just going to list a bunch of quotes I found hilarious for one reason or none.
“He had feminine underwear too, but that was too weird; I left them.”
“Sam must have been taller than me as a woman, and bustier.”
“Going after someone unknown in the dark and cold and almost-snow—that wasn’t brave. That was exceedingly stupid.” Says the girl who climbed on top of a not-quite-dead-dragon.
“I hadn’t meant my curiosity to cause so much pain.
Before I could find an apology good enough, he said, ‘I think last week wouldn’t have been so dramatic if I hadn’t already been killed by dragons not twenty years ago.’
That was before I’d been born, but it probably felt recent to him. ‘What happened?’” And she asks even though she knows she can read about it/NOT ask him to cause him pain.
“I can’t do this in-between stuff. Either we kiss or we don’t.” Yes, Ana telling it like it is. I kind of admire her bluntness.
“I want to tell you something.” (282) and then “Can I tell you something?” (283) Janan, this must be important. ”When I went north in my last life…” (284-285) Seriously? He was so eager to tell her a frakking story? He really is like an old grandfather.
“And, even though I knew better, I checked on the stairs. They were gone. I doubted I could trust anything to stay where I’d left it.”#2012 #adult #author #awesome #book #butterfly #challenge #cute #debut #fiction #guilty #incarnate #literacy #man #masquerade #mtv #much #nosoul #old #on #pleasure #reading #reads #romance #science #sex #teen #trial #video #young
SPOILER ALERT: It’s been awhile since I read this book so I may not remember the smaller details, but might give away the bigger ones.
Author: Agresti, Aimee
Keywords: Fairies, angels, scars, cute boys, high school, internship, hotel, adoption, hospitals, co-op, devil, souls, success, earning, immediate results, cursed, fighting back, under a spell, tainted, wings, driven, improbable, friends, love, sacrifice, belonging, memories, painting, art, Dorian Gray.
Recommended For: 12+, fans of The Picture of Dorian Gray
Sentence: I sentence Aimee Agresti to carrying ten copies of Illuminate on her back for 48 hours. That’s how it felt when I really wanted to speed through but there were just so many possibly crucial…words. ;D
Review: I only complain about the size of the book because I fear it’ll turn off many teens from reading a pretty decent and witty book. It’s not even complicated or too heavy for teens that read Twilight and The Mortal Instruments
trilogy series (UGH).
Basically all the events of this book are highly improbable, but that is true of thousands upon thousands of books. And I therefore cannot judge this book by the crazy awesome opportunity to work in a hotel for credit or the fact that the protagonist agreed even though she is not going into hospitality services but medicine (tentatively).
From the very beginning (sort of) you know that Haven Terra (even if you ignored her ridiculous name) is some sort of angel-winged-thing. It’s no secret to anyone but her.
If I could sum up this book it would be like reading The Picture of Dorian Gray, very teened up and partially immersed in a modernized Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy settings. Perhaps Dante, Haven’s BFFL is a tip of the hat to the epic Italian poet.
In any case, the slow development and lack of action is worth sitting through. Agresti is clearly not new to writing and shows it with her wit and her quirky characters.
My only complaint is that Dante was a little too stereotypical as the gay friend and if he is to be so flamboyant and, well, gay he needs balance. I am all for the inclusion of diversity in books, especially teen, but a flamboyant gay protagonist needs a not-so-stereotypical gay to balance him; to show readers that not all people belong to a single label. People are more complex and cannot be entirely compartmentalized. I believe that is a responsibility of authors, as crazy and fantastical as their stories may be; people are people and that, at least, should read honestly.#book #on #trial #mtv #video #illuminate #25 #twenty #five #books #goodreads #read #reading #reader #young #adult #teen #teens #aimee #agresti #wit #funny #angels #wings #dante #divine #comedy #picture #of #dorian gray
Author: Megan Miranda
Genre: Teen, drama, supernatural, medical, anomaly, miracles, religion, love, triangles, betrayal, parenting, death, life, survival, moving on, grief.
Recommended For: 13+
Sentence: I sentence Megan Miranda to figuring out her parental issues, the same as the rest of us.
Review: Okay, so I’ll admit I enjoyed Miranda’s writing. It’s pleasant and I was hooked. It’s a fascinating story, except I had so many bones to pick by the end, I became frustrated.
At first I really liked Delaney. She’s not above admitting she’s horny enough to fool around with the first guy that takes interest in her on her best friend’s couch. Besides he’s cute, so what the hell, right? Next, she died for eleven minutes. Sympathy earned. And finally, not waiting for Decker, I’m all for that. If he isn’t gonna make a move, either she should make the first move or freaking move on.
But then things went awry and not in a good way. I’m going to list them because I was actually really into this story until Delaney became really dumb for a smart girl.
1. Bad doctoring. Okay, suffice it to say a doctor should not be taking recommendations/advice from the parents of a patient that was in trauma for a week; they should also not be sending a patient home after that sort of ordeal without the approval of a therapist. Especially if they thought she was hurting herself (even if she wasn’t). It’s no wonder so many people are dying in that stupid little town, with dumbass doctors like Dr. Logan or whatever his name is. I can’t even stand to re-check the book.
2. Bad parenting. Their daughter just died. She better be fucking staying in that hospital until they are 95% sure she is fine (because it should never be 100% as a freaking parent). Not only did these parents drag Delaney home, when she knew she wasn’t alright, they also decided drugged up Delaney is a healthy Delaney. Then her mother goes all “Delaney is dead to me” routine on her, but is also overbearing (understandable). But seriously, make up your mind woman. We get all the details on her horrible parental experience and yet she turns out to be ten times worse. She betrays her daughter; believes Delaney is capable of murder; doesn’t trust her; thinks she’s lying (leading to her lying); and then stares at albums of Delaney pre-death/pre-revival, like she’s not there. No wonder her daughter is dying on the inside. Worst. Parenting. Ever. She’s not a freaking psych-ward patient, she’s her daughter. I’m probably more upset by this than I should be, but it ticks me off that there is no resolution to the mother’s stupidity. It would have been better if Delaney had just died.
3. Bad friendships. Delaney is a horrible friend, that much is clear. What makes it worse though is that her friends are horrible friends too. Why does she owe them for saving her? What she should’ve said to Justin’s “you owe me this much” comment about his party was “Oh gee thanks guys, I didn’t fucking know you saving my life came with strings. So if I don’t follow through should I just off myself or will you do the honours?” Apparently Delaney also can’t believe Janna wants to be friendlier. It also becomes clear that Janna is a much better friend and does things for Delaney that she likely wouldn’t for her if their situations had been switched. Not only that, but when Carson dies, Delaney goes on a rampage that this is all about her. Screw that. She may have been unable to save him/witness to his death, but what about Janna? Not even a phone call to her. Asshole move, sister.
Even between Delaney and her best friend, Decker, things are pretty much fucked, especially after he kisses Tara. Which leads me to my next point.
4. Bad communication. Delaney and Decker are clearly meant for each other and fancy each other, but neither wants to say it first. Neither wants to, I guess, confront and ruin their friendship. But I believe that ship had long sailed. Delaney is all irrational about Decker kissing Tara, when she didn’t even explain the Carson situ properly. Delaney, you are a tool. A rotten tool with a stick up your ass. Please pull it out and maintain a real relationship for once. And bad communication seems to surround every character in this book. No one talks or texts or anything. They find out things the hard way. Like witnessing Troy and the old woman at the nursing home. Not only was it obvious he’s been killing people “prematurely”, but he’s also creepy as fuck. He knows where she lives, for Christ’s sake. If that isn’t creepy then I’m sure she’d be comforted by his non-sleeping, watching-her-house-at-night-ways, at night.
And don’t even get me started on the lack of communication with her parents. Explode already. It’s healthier that way. Enough of the long drives to the run-down shack outside of town.
5. Bad signals. Carson was a mistake. Troy was a mistake. And why in the hell is it so hard to say “you’re not a mistake” to Decker? To hell with Tara. When Troy stated “you want me too” (not exact quote because I couldn’t be bothered), in his apartment, I was pretty surprised. I did NOT get the impression Delaney was into him. There are some pretty mixed signals and confusing shit flying around everywhere.
6. Bad personality (faults). Delaney is a pushover around her friends. Instead of saying “no” to the party, she convinces her parents to let her go. Um, hello, you just died. That’s your ticket out of it. Troy is creepy, you do not need to date him because you suck at communicating with Decker. It’s not necessary to latch onto the next available guy who thinks he gets you. He may have been in a freaking coma, but he also is delusional and thinks the present is actually hell. So, you know, psychotic killer. How is Delaney okay with him having killed people even if they were going to die anyway? She’s cold and too calm and collected. I think the only time I actually felt her “feelings” was when she was running, scared shitless of Troy and locked herself in that funeral home. It was the most human feeling she showed. She cried sure, but it didn’t feel genuine.
Finally, Delaney is the source of her own problems. She can’t speak up for herself or confront the issues at hand. She can’t communicate about the important things. This is why her post-death “life” sucks.
7. Bad ending. She should have dived into the ice herself. I’m sure she would’ve done everyone a favor since apparently she’s just a hindrance and seems to agree with this assessment of her presence. Nothing is resolved. Not her mother’s horrible nature; nor her lack of friends who blame her for not being able to magically stop Carson’s seizures. But hey, at least Troy is dead (one part of the triangle resolved; oh wait, Carson died too, so never mind. She only has Decker left) and she is now with Decker. I’m pretty sure that means Decker is cheating on Tara though. So, you know, worst ending ever. No dramatic break up; no isolation from her friends; no confrontation with her mother after the parentals find out about falling through the ice and Troy’s death.
Seriously, how are her parents able to function day to day?#fracture #book #books #on #trial #decker #delaney #bad #video #mtv #review #reviews #fracture #fractures #thin #ice #11 #eleven #minutes #dead #death #miranda #goodreads #read #reading #sucky #sucks #carson #janna #plums