So, uh, I read this book to see how it dealt with the reincarnation thing that was the cause of the yellow-facing that the movie uses. So yeah.... tec...moreSo, uh, I read this book to see how it dealt with the reincarnation thing that was the cause of the yellow-facing that the movie uses. So yeah.... technically, only the main characters are reincarnated, so I'm really confused as to why Hugo Weaving and Jim Sturgess and others need to be in yellow-face, seeing as how they definitely don't play the main character in the sequence. (Bae Doona plays the Korean clone, the fifth reincarnation, but from what it looks like, she's not the important part of the sequence, only the male actors.) So yeah, the yellow-face thing is totally unnecessary. I won't be paying to see the movie.
This book, though, is a masterpiece. It's gotten a place on my favourites shelf. And I'm going to need to reread it several more times to see if I've missed any clues (and I know I have). (less)
Look, I won't lie, I enjoyed this book. I enjoyed it in the way that I enjoyed watching the first four seasons of Jersey Shore back to back. It's ridi...moreLook, I won't lie, I enjoyed this book. I enjoyed it in the way that I enjoyed watching the first four seasons of Jersey Shore back to back. It's ridiculous. I think the only memorable mention is that there are so many fashion puns, like "Run-way, don't walk!" that made me cringe and laugh, because I love puns, no matter how bad they are. In fact, the worse they are, the better.
As for everything else? Meh.
The world building is confusing, and I still have no idea what happened. I assume it's set in our world, since there are countries like Oktooberfest (Germany), Canne Del Abra (the Middle East?), NorDenSwee (Sweden, I'll assume), Chakra (India), and, Digeridoo (Australia). Punnish, I guess. But the stereotypes Banks uses for folks from each of these countries are so over-the-top stereotypical, it made me roll my eyes. What makes me wonder most is, since this is a futuristic vision of our world, how did it get to be like this? This book is marketed as dystopian, so whenever I approach a dystopian novel, this is the first question I ask myself. More often than not, the question is never answered, and this book, unsurprisingly, offers no explanation as to why the entire world is obsessed with fashion and nothing else. The world is filled with unexplained super technology AND what seems to be a touch of magical realism, but it seems to be there for convenience.
Nothing here makes sense.
Now, I think that Tyra has a great imagination, but with this book, it feels like she put every idea she had into the pages. There's just too much, and combined, it just doesn't make sense. A lot should have been edited out--in fact, the book could have been about 200 pages shorter.
The only thing I really got out of this book was an intense desire to watch America's Next Top Model. (less)
I'll admit that this was fun to read, and that the echoes of the Prohibition era was done quite well, but it was the worldbuilding that really killed...moreI'll admit that this was fun to read, and that the echoes of the Prohibition era was done quite well, but it was the worldbuilding that really killed it for me. I mean, apart from the absurd notion that coffee and chocolate are banned, I can't understand why those two items are banned when alcohol is legal, even for minors. A lot of things just don't make sense in terms of the worldbuilding. If anything, it felt like it was dystopian for the sake of being a dystopian. There was nothing remarkable about this book, and it obviously jumped onto the dystopian bandwagon.
The romance was a bit iffy. Anya did a complete about-face in terms of her feelings for Win. One moment she was like, "Oh, I'm not interested. He's not my type", and the next, she's planning on having sex with him (which, if you've read the book, and know that she's a Catholic, is off-character).
I won't even touch up on the summary on the back of the book: "Anya will have to choose between love and loyalty, knowing that whatever she decides will have shattering consequences: heartbreak or a gangland war that will tear the city apart." Really? That's her decision? It seems like a bit of a no-brainer to me. And considering that she wasn't even remotely interested in Win when she was forbidden to date him, I don't see why it should have been that big a deal.
The story was pretty awesome, but when the unecessary romance came into play in the second half of the novel, all trace of plot scampered away, only revealing its ugly face in the last fifty or so pages. Not impressive.
Another positive aspect that I have to comment on is the voice and readability. The voice was very likeable, and easy to read. It made for a quick, light read, perfect for a day in the sun.(less)
Oy vey. What was going on in this book? Seriously. The first thing that comes to mind when I think of this book is unorganised. It reads like a first d...moreOy vey. What was going on in this book? Seriously. The first thing that comes to mind when I think of this book is unorganised. It reads like a first draft where Johnson just wrote whatever came to mind, and then didn't go back to fix the inaccuracies. Nothing makes sense, and there is no clear vision as to what's supposed to be happening. The world-building, in short, sucks balls.
Then there's the characters. Holy crap, I hate Violet. She is dumber than Bella Swan in every way. The choices she makes are half-assed, and hardly thought through. I'm surprised that she managed to survive all 400 pages of this book.
Yeah, I hated this book. I'm surprised that it managed to get published. This is just another pointless dystopian that rips off 1984 and has all of the angst and a shoddy love triangle where both guys are massive jerks. *yawn*(less)