Okay, so this just sounds like an amazing read. A girl suffering from anorexia who becomes Famine, one of the Four Horsemen? What a fantastic idea. I...moreOkay, so this just sounds like an amazing read. A girl suffering from anorexia who becomes Famine, one of the Four Horsemen? What a fantastic idea. I just wish that I had come up with it first.
Now, Lisabeth Lewis is an odd character. She thinks she’s fat, no matter how much weight she loses. Because of this, I think I can really relate to her character. God knows how often I’ve decided to skip a meal to stay thin. And in this day and age, where the media is constantly reminding us females that we need to be thin to be beautiful, I think this is a book almost every girl should read.
Though, I really must comment on the annoying repetition of the ‘Thin Voice’ telling us how many calories are in practically every food mentioned (and sometimes in foods that aren’t mentioned). It’s fine a few times, but when it averages on twice per page, it gets distracting.
I loved how realistic her reaction to everything that happened was. From finding out she’s Famine to meeting Death and interacting with him. Most books don’t have that, which made this stand out from the rest.
Death was an interesting character. He was an odd blend of modern and traditional. He interacted well with all the characters, and was the perfect leader holding them all together. I found it interesting–interesting in a bad way, mind you–that he took upon the form of Kurt Cobain. I don’t know, I just would have found it more settling if he were his own character, not a rip off of a dead rock star.
War, on the other hand, was a terrifyingly cool character. She was a Queen Bitch, but she made it likeable. I personally found myself cheering for her in the final battle between her and Lisabeth. Their interactions were fun to read.
There were some unnecessary scenes where Lisa has an ‘excruciating bowel movement’ that was described in far too much detail. It was slightly off-putting and sickening. The last thing I want to read about in a tragic, touching tale is about explosive bowel movements. Ick! *shudders*
The ending was tragic, amazing, and emotional. The setting was just a massive tearjerker and the final showdown was amazing and well thought out. This book gave out a really strong message towards girls with eating disorders and it really made me reflect on all that.
A book that tugs on the heartstrings, this is something I would recommend everyone to read.
Okay, so when I saw this book in stores at the beginning of April, I kind of freaked out. I thought it would release on the 19th of April, like Goodre...moreOkay, so when I saw this book in stores at the beginning of April, I kind of freaked out. I thought it would release on the 19th of April, like Goodreads said. But lucky me got it early. For once, I’m glad to be an Australian book-lover.
The writing is rich and descriptive. It’s beautiful and makes you want to savour the words. I found myself constantly rereading passages because of the amazing descriptions. Goodman certainly has a way with words. From the way she describes the vibrant world that Eona lives in, rich with eastern mythology, it’s clear that she’s done her research, but there’s something more than just that that makes her world-building so magnificent. While Eon was mainly situated within the palace, Eona takes us all across the fantastic world, through mountain passes and deserts and forests, even across the water. This is a tale of adventure, and we explore the land and its people. Every minute detail is vivid and so easy to visualise, every bit of their culture is shown to us and appreciated. Because of the first person POV, it feels personal, and you really get to know the character of Eona. I mean, not that you need to learn much about her after Eon, but this has far less angsting over her uncertainty about uniting with her dragon. This time, Eona has to deal with not knowing how to control her powers, which cause great strife to the rest of the cast.
It seems that this book has everything: action, adventure, world-building and character growth. It also has a slight dash of romance. I’m not going to say who it is with, but all I can say that Goodman really made it work. She made their feelings so clear, so easy to believe in. There was a lot of tension in the air between them. There were many times where I practically shouted “Oh, Just rip her clothes off already!” But not only that, she made their relationship realistic. They weren’t without hardships. They constantly mistrusted each other, and kept the truth. There seemed to be a hidden agenda with their interactions to each other. But that they were able to work through all those problems showed that they were a truly strong couple that really did deserve to be together. I mean, it’s much better than most other YA romances where their biggest problems are keeping away from each other for 18 days and a new hair style (as seen in Torment). So, this realistic romance was done quite well, especially considering the love triangle that tried to separate them time and time again. The second person in the love triangle, though I didn’t want him to be with Eona, man, I loved their interactions the most. They were SEXY together. Rough and raw passion dripping off every word. They too had the same amount of mistrust, but in a different sort of way. They had a sort of… mutual survival thing going on (and before you complain about spoiling this for you, believe me, this person isn’t who you think it is.)
A wonderful theme explored in both this book and Eon is what it means to be a woman. Examples of this are Lady Dela, who has the body of a man, but the spirit of a woman; and now Eona, who has come to terms with her femininity–to an extent. She mentions often that she had been denied her femininity for years and has forgotten what it means to be a woman. This installment delves deeper into her psyche and offers insight to the issue of the topic, especially considering the less than stellar views of women that this world has.
Trust is also an important theme, which was also present in Eon when she lies about being a eunuch. Eona constantly finds herself in situations where she needs to keep the truth hidden, despite her dragon’s virtue being truth. I think this is an important thing to note while reading the two books. This theme explore the concept of if you lie to someone once, they will constantly doubt you, even in times of truth, such as Ryko’s rocky relationship with Eona. Ryko still hadn’t recovered from Eona’s betrayal in the first book, and it causes strains in their relationship. Not only that, but because of the lack of truth, everyone’s relationships are on edge. This is also the cause for a major upheaval near the end of the book, which changes the course of things.
In this book, there is more history, answering a great deal of questions concerning Eona’s ancestors, the red and black folios, and why the Mirror Dragon had disappeared for five hundred years. From this also comes a mystery which keeps the reader constantly guessing. We learn a much deeper truth concerning the dragons and their dragon eyes, and from this, Eona is forced to make the greatest sacrifice.
I loved this book so much. Even though it’s only April, and I haven’t read many books released this year, I think this is the best book 2011 has to offer. I beg you all to go out and read this book. Your lives depend on it.
There is just one thing I hate about McKinley’s books: they’re usually very very long and read like a text book for the first 100 pages or so. Even in...moreThere is just one thing I hate about McKinley’s books: they’re usually very very long and read like a text book for the first 100 pages or so. Even in this book, there were actual excerpts from fictional texts, info dumping everything about this fantastical world, making it a chore to read. The text excerpts also had an odd feel to it, and awkward wording, In an attempt to sound old, the word “the” was spelled as “thee”, which was fairly annoying and grammatically wrong. Even if it was done like that on purpose (which, I’d rather it was, since I refuse to believe that any editor wouldn’t catch something as glaringly obvious as that), it was done in a really tacky and there was no reason for it whatsoever.
It was hard for me to properly visualise the pegasi in my minds. They were described as having hands on the end of their wings, which kind of killed my vision of pegasi for the remainder of the story. She made a completely new creature and used it here, it was hardly a pegasi anymore. But still, I enjoyed how she developed them and made this world a part of who they are.
The names bothered me a bit. A lot of them were so typical in a fantasy setting, like Fthoom, Glarfin, Lrrianay and Fgeelaa (how the heck do you even pronounce them?). It made it really difficult to remember the characters and their roles. Because there were so many characters with these sort of names, I kept getting them mixed up.
And finally, the ending was completely rushed. Everything happened in the last dozen or so pages, which was a frightening change of pace, considering the incredibly slow writing style. Plus, that there will be a sequel annoys me a bit. I didn’t honestly think that there needs to be a sequel. Everything could have been compressed into one book, if only those pages and pages of backstory and lengthy descriptions were edited out.
Now, onto the good parts.
If you don’t mind reading a long, almost plotless story, then you’ll be blown away by the amazing world-building. If there’s one thing I admire about McKinley, it’s her astounding ability to create this magical, perfect world. Everything about this world is so perfectly crafted. From the backstory (which, I admit was delivered in a slightly sloppy manner) to the landscape, everything was carefully thought out.
Now, while there is next to no plot in this story, there is a great deal of character growth instead. The whole story revolves around the friendship of a young princess and her pegasus, and over the years, they mature, they grow. It’s actually quite a lovely journey. You can actually learn a lot from this friendship.
So, I’m not sure if I hated this book or loved it. I suppose I’ll let the rating decide for me: