Wow, I was expecting so much more from this. It's nominated for a bunch of awards, and won the Nebula, and I've heard Okorafor is a great writer, butWow, I was expecting so much more from this. It's nominated for a bunch of awards, and won the Nebula, and I've heard Okorafor is a great writer, but this was not a good example of any of those things for me. I don't know, maybe it's a combination of her style, the format she chose to write the story in, and they story itself, but the result for me was rushed, simplistic and unsatisfying. And even more so because this story, executed differently, is one I very much want to read.
Binti is from a culture on a planet that is very isolated. She is a sort of math genius (the exact nature of what she does escapes me, because one of the things this novella doesn't do is give us specifics), and will be the first of her people to ever go to the famed Oomza University, against the wishes of her people. She gets caught up in the conflict between an alien species and humanity. Seriously, this premise sounds so good. Classic fish out of water, culture clash, with added search for identity, plus spaceships and aliens, and galactic warfare. But it doesn't work.
There was not enough room in this story for anything to connect. The worldbuilding is vague, the characterization is basic, even Binti's emotional journey, which is supposedly the center of the novel, was so rushed I didn't connect with it at all. This isn't helped by the author's style, which seemed really ineffective. She is constantly summarizing things and glossing over concepts and scenes that I wanted to actually see. One of the most important scenes in the novella, a turning point, is entirely summarized and told. "Show not tell" is a writing cliché for a reason.
As other reviewers have pointed out, the conflict between the Meduse and humans is solved in a ridiculously easy way, and (view spoiler)[the murder of hundreds of humans is never mentioned again, one of the Meduse invited to become a student at the University whose people he murdered (hide spoiler)]. The sentiment behind this is admirable, empathy and peace and understanding. But how it gets there was entirely underwhelming and unbelievable. This story needed at least two hundred more pages, if not much more. It needed more dialogue, more detail, more everything.
Probably won't read the sequel, which is set to be published next year.
Read this mostly so I could read #2, which I've heard is great, and which I own. It was okay. It felt kind of confused a lot of the time, not sure whaRead this mostly so I could read #2, which I've heard is great, and which I own. It was okay. It felt kind of confused a lot of the time, not sure what the arcs of the characters was going to be. They were just like, flittering around half the time. I wanted more emotional wallowing, more structure. I mean, it was okay and not a waste of time, but not a fave.
A fun enough diversion, but the second half was not as good as the first half, which was already walking a fine line with the premise. It just got a lA fun enough diversion, but the second half was not as good as the first half, which was already walking a fine line with the premise. It just got a little bit too cheesy for me there. I didn't think the fallout was handled in the most satisfying manner. ...more
The main characters in this one were in #9 (the one that I won from a Goodreads Giveaway and didn't like) and I got curious, so I picked this up. WhyThe main characters in this one were in #9 (the one that I won from a Goodreads Giveaway and didn't like) and I got curious, so I picked this up. Why couldn't I have won this one instead? Duke of Sin is soooo much better than Sweetest Scoundrel. I heard this author was inconsistent, and I guess that's true. I will for sure be reading more of her books if they're as good as this one. Hopefully won't regret the bad ones too much on the way. ...more
I didn't quite love this second volume of Giant Days as much as I did the first one, but this is still an unbelievably fun series and I can't wait forI didn't quite love this second volume of Giant Days as much as I did the first one, but this is still an unbelievably fun series and I can't wait for Vol. 3.
Vol. 2 covers issues #5-9 of the series, from a winter ball through exams, dating crises, and what happens when you watch too many episodes of Friday Night Lights in a row. Crotchety Susan is for once the only one having reliable sexytimes, while Daisy is going through a questioning phase, and Esther is having . . . issues. Ed continues to crush hopelessly on Esther, and McGraw continues to be have a moustache.
I did find some of the stuff that happened in this one . . . bizarre. In the first issue, Susan gets (view spoiler)[locked in an office for exposing a faith healer in her hometown as a fraud, and the others have to come rescue her. This does involve a very amusing couple of incidences involving McGraw and multi-tool, and Esther unleashing her drama on an unsuspecting dance floor, but it was still weird. Also, Daisy starts channeling Tami Taylor?? (hide spoiler)] There were other little things as well, on the more cartoonish end of things, but they were so small I only really noticed them because I was so weirded out by the other stuff.
The thing that really knocked this down a star for me may just be my problem, I don't know. The artist for the first entire trade, and the first two issues of this one, was Lissa Treiman, and it is one of the best parts of the comic. Her characters are so expressive and unique looking, and they have huge personality. Starting with issue #7, Max Sarin takes over, and it's not like his art is bad. In fact, it's not at all. It's just not the art I wanted.
Am I the only one who gets supremely annoyed when comics change artists? For me, the art is inextricably linked to the identity of the comic, and when you take that away, it's like it's a whole new comic, and I hate that. I hate it so much, you guys. And I love it so much when comics have the same artists for the whole series, like Fiona Staples on Saga. I mean, imagine that series without her. You can't! I don't get it. Why does this happen. Does it annoy it anyone else as much as it does me?
Anyway, I suppose I'll get over it. I have to. I like the series too much to let a change in artwork deter me.
So when is Vol. 3?["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
So I haven't actually read this, and now I for sure won't. On a whim last Saturday, because I'm currently subscribed to HBO for my Game of Thrones neeSo I haven't actually read this, and now I for sure won't. On a whim last Saturday, because I'm currently subscribed to HBO for my Game of Thrones needs, I saw this was on there and watched it. Surprisingly, I didn't hate the movie version, so I gave in to my Curiosity Monster and checked out the ebook from my library. I opened it, read two sentences and then hardcore noped right out of there. The writing style was immediately unbearable, and nothing kills my Curiosity Monster faster than that. I will just stick to the movies and blog posts that angry people write on the internet from now on.
P.S. Jamie Dornan was just okay as Christian Grey. He's kind of a black hole of chemistry in the role, though (I've seen him be very charming and watchable in other things, notably S1 Once Upon a Time and The Fall). It would definitely have been a much different (and better) movie with Charlie Hunnam in it instead. I think he would have brought something dangerous and interesting. I was impressed with Dakota Johnson, though. I cheered every time she stood up for herself or told him "no"....more