One of the best parts about this novel is that Kirby is drawn very realistically.
"She's pissed that he's in awe of what happened to her. It's not that...moreOne of the best parts about this novel is that Kirby is drawn very realistically.
"She's pissed that he's in awe of what happened to her. It's not that great. Girls get murdered all the fucking time."
She is tired of being the thing that happened to her in other people's eyes instead of Kirby. She has trouble dating guys because they all want to save her and kiss her scars and "magic them away" or use her for their hipster film project and she can't stand it. She wants them to look at her or not at all. Yet she's still coated in the experience, determined to find her attempted murderer, to what? Get back to being Kirby, whoever that is, rather than The Girl Who Was Almost Murdered, perhaps. She's complex, and her motives seem varied, and that's what makes her an interesting and human character.
Her relationship with Dan was one of my favorite parts of the book... at first. They reminded me of Frank and Cassie in Tana Franch's Dublin Murder Series books. Two misanthrope smartasses with a vastly large age difference coming together to be partners in crime and witticisms. I spent much of the book hoping the author wouldn't go THERE and then she hinted about going THERE and I'm still in denial that it happened because I like everything else in this book and I refuse to acknowledge this thing. This is like if Buffy and Giles decided to get together and suck face. No. Why? No. Dan also got weirdly possessive and the subtle or not-so-subtle jealous comments were completely irritating. The whole dynamic is just weird to me. Kirby lacked a father figure. Dan was unable to produce children. He talks to her like she's a child, calling her kiddo every chapter, and then thinks about her when he's masturbating. THAT'S NOT WEIRD AT ALL. So now they want to make out? No, stop, no.
The house is clearly the evil twin of the TARDIS and is easily distracted by shiny things... and blood. [Note to self: Do not shine bright like a diamond. Rihanna, settle down.] I think the fact that the house only wants girls who possess some unique and special potential is quite interesting. It reeks a little bit of Special Snowflake Syndrome but I'm sort of narcissistic so I'm ok with this. I think the house and its purpose could definitely have been fleshed out. There was a missed opportunity here to explore the mythology of the house and give this book a lot more meat.
This book is largely about women's issues throughout time. The author uses the time travel device to explore different problems women face in each decade while still managing to make the majority of the characters come to life as more than the face of an issue. Lesbians in the 50's and women succeeding as architects despite sexist (and attempted rapist) male coworkers, oh my! I love you, Willie, you artistic and wine loving lesbian. So many feels. There was also a transgender character and a character who assisted girls with (then) illegal abortions prior to Roe v. Wade.
"You can bury your radical magazines, and tear up your sexually perverse sketches, and burn your sheets, but how do you erase who you are?"
My feelings for Willie are only rivaled by my feelings for the dog Tokyo. I have never wanted to go home and hug my Border Collie more.
I have to say that the beginning of this novel was stronger than the end. The ending was rushed, Kirby made some ridiculous and unrealistic decisions, and the romance was mildly nauseating and unnecessary. My actual rating for this book would likely be a 3.5 but I'm rounding up for the excellent cast of diverse characters and interesting spin on a serial killer story by using time travel. As a Doctor Who and Gillian Flynn fan, I was the ideal candidate to love this book, and it was definitely an enjoyable read, even if the storytelling didn't quite measure up to the timey wimeyness of DW or psychological punch packing writing of Gillian Flynn. (less)
Props for the Beyonce joke and the chapter on dating musicians though. Also, the randomly insightful feminist thoughts that seemed out of place in th...more
Props for the Beyonce joke and the chapter on dating musicians though. Also, the randomly insightful feminist thoughts that seemed out of place in this particular book. Spot on. Too bad the rest was incredibly offensive towards, well, everyone. It also seemed to be about shock value rather than being an open expression of a sexually confident woman, which I gather is what I was supposed to think while reading. Well, no. Newp. (less)