Well that was underwhelming... This book didn't feel put-together at all, and the side characters (who I thought were quite good in Withering Tights)Well that was underwhelming... This book didn't feel put-together at all, and the side characters (who I thought were quite good in Withering Tights) seemed to become one indistinguishable mass of ill-defined characterization. The plot isn't usually (or is supposed to be) exactly rock solid in this series, but even so this was messier and more random than before. There's a few good jokes (ex. Mr Barraclough's death metal pie band) but the rest of it isn't nearly as entertaining as before. Hmm. It's weird, because I always wondered how the quality/hilarity of Rennison's writing could never fail me before, through so many books, but I guess it finally has?! :P...more
This isn't the book I was expecting, but what it is was so good that I don't mind even the slightest bit. Actually, everything about this book surprisThis isn't the book I was expecting, but what it is was so good that I don't mind even the slightest bit. Actually, everything about this book surprised me in one way or another, from its charming characters to the insanely good writing to the portrayal of the world and its dragons (of course). I can't do it much justice, but it's the kind of story where when you're done you just have to take a moment to bask in happiness at how good it was.
-The caliber of writing is phenomenal. Every sentence, every thought, is so fluidly put into words that all I can do is marvel and wonder how it's done. It's the same with her dialogue.
-The 1st person POV consistent yet always engaging, and often surprising; the humor in Seraphina's first-person narration feels natural as well. It's a mix of her rational, no-nonsense side and her sarcastic human voice.
-I get the feeling that Phina and Lucian have the kind of chemistry where they could spend hours and hours just talking to one another, unlike the myriad of hastily written couples that are thrown together without a thing in common. I don't really remember what their physical descriptions were like, but their conversations are memorable and charming without seeming unrealistic.
-This book just gets more complex and intriguing as you go on. The fantasy world is familiar yet unique-- some sort of quasi-italian, medieval sort of land, with a focus on music because of the main character's occupation. There are a mountain of gorgeous descriptions of what the The characters aren't stereotypes-- take Glisselda, for example, who could've easily remained a shallow and spoiled princess, but is instead not as immature as she looks. I loved Orma's conflicted but ultimately caring nature, I want to know more about Lars and Fruit Bat and the others. I really can't wait to see the characters develop further, and there's a lot of open ends that have promise too (like the other occupants of Seraphina's 'mental garden', which I still think it strange and otherworld, but cool)...more
Sean is in a hotel room that is dirty and also hot
Sean is expecting a phone call from a dude
Sean is kind of cRAZy and there is bThe Tesseract: a recap
Sean is in a hotel room that is dirty and also hot
Sean is expecting a phone call from a dude
Sean is kind of cRAZy and there is blood on the sheets
blood because someone got murdered and TORTURED TO DEATH PROBABLY or it was a period or something
NOPE DEFINITELY TORTURE
>we listen to Sean be crazy for 20 pages<
-sean lies down puts a photo of a random girl on his chest and feels calmer (no he does not actually know who this girl is but it makes him feel better but not altogether less cray)
-sean points to a door and says "You," ... "Are all about me." This seems significant for some reason
-sean looks through peepholes and imagines someone killing himself here
the dude sean is expecting is also crazy. crazy cruel gangster dude called don pepe
the driver of the car, Jojo, remembers a story his dad told him while living in a plantation
where some dude went crazy when he was chopping sugar canes, but is now a pretty swell old guy
the story also inspires fEAR of don pepe because he made crazy 'red mist' old guy cut off Fatboy's hands (and Fatboy was nice dude)
back to present
THEY RAN OVER A CAT
Jojo is having trouble shooting the cat to end it but then the cat JUMPS ON HIS CHEST and then it dies
meanwhile sean remembers meeting don and jojo and co for the first time. his buddy/leader Alex mentions a crazy old guy who sounds exactly like jojo's crazy old guy except it puts jojo's memory into question as this COG works with boats and cranes, not sugar canes (wat)
in flashback, sean is also established as kind of a weenie
they arrive at the hotel a little late
knockin on the door
Sean suddenly starts SHOOTING EVERYONE and runs out of the door killing don and bubot and runs into another room
jojo and his friend are like WTF okay LET'S KILL HIM
sean runs away, but not before shooting the concierge JUST BECAUSE HE WAS THERE
CROSSING THE LINE THERE SEAN
sean comes across some street kids who will be important later because i read the jacket cover
Rosa is a doctor mother lady person with two kids
one of the kids is super pretty
the other has something ambiguous wrong with his chest
rosa grew up and all everyone talks about is marrying and stuff
rosa falls in luuuurve with a boy with a deformed chest. his name is Lito
they can't be together because he is deformed
rosa has a deaf dad who is likeable although he doesn't say anything
rosa is super pretty though, like the prettiest person in town she can get anyone
it's okay deformed kid you remind me of a chocolate bar ilu
any who THEIRS IS A LOVE PURER THAN ANY OTHER
they meet in monsoons and stuff and love love love
END FLASHBACK KIND OF
it is revealed that rosa's husband is not deformed chest kid, it's some dude called Sonny
sonny has a flat tire and will be home late
rosa goes home for her father's funeral
she starts screaming and crying eventually, sonny goes to take their kids away from the spectacle
as he is carrying raphael, his son the crowd won't really move for him
so HE STARTS PUNCHING THEIR FACES FOR NOT MOVING
ACID ON HIS BABY ACID ON HIS HAND
a man goes to help them (aka obvs deformed chest lover kid) but wait what the man HAS A BOTTLE OF ACID WITH HIM
that shit is sick man
rosa tells sonny not to hurt him or else she'll leave him so sonny's like okay sure i guess
flashback is interrupted by SOME GUY WHO BURST THROUGH THE WINDOW AND IS USING ROSA AS A HUMAN SHIELD AND KILLED HER MOM AND
you know i still don't know the point of this book i wonder if it will make sense by the end
"The Tesseract is a story of personal tragedies that occur for no comprehensible reason, and investigates the ways in which we explain them, whether through religion, myth, psychology, or science. It is a novel that balances science against religion, and our wills against our fates, asking the ever-elusive question of how we can make sense of events in a world where meaning lies beyond our grasp."
meaning of what in blazes is going on in this book is certainly still beyond my grasp ...more
That was completely surreal and more than a little unsettling. It's not a traditional story, but it's a fascinating, disorienting trip that made me thThat was completely surreal and more than a little unsettling. It's not a traditional story, but it's a fascinating, disorienting trip that made me think. You really can't quite put your dreams into words, can you? Not the same way you experienced it. Weird stuff....more
You'd think that after so many years of devouring books that I wouldn't be reduced to the speechless mess that I am right now, mWhere do I even start?
You'd think that after so many years of devouring books that I wouldn't be reduced to the speechless mess that I am right now, marveling at how Fly by Night manages to keep getting better with every page, how it keeps surprising me with a new wonderful way of wording something as it paints so many vivid pictures of its characters with a few deft strokes.
From the first few pages I was in love, and it's hard not to because here is a book that loves words just as much as you do, and brings out the power they have in a way that's nothing short of amazing. As it went on I only fell harder as the world really came to life with all its intricate details and god, that plot. There are so many different threads going on at once, but they're layered in a way that seems effortless. Small hints and details come back and the stakes keep rising as conspiracies, motives, schemes, and factions collide. It's wonderfully unpredictable, and a major reason for that is because the characters are always surprising me.
The characters aren't merely likable, they're tricky and clever, angry and frightened but resilient and entertaining as hell. And that's just a few words for Mosca, our lead, who has 'the keen instincts of the unloved', and the first time she feels like someone wants her around, it was a feeling 'too strange and new to be thrown away lightly.' The fact that that someone is a con man of questionable character keeps things from getting sappy.
I don't think I can describe the characters better than Hardinge can, so here's a few snippets.
"When he smiled, his eyebrows rose into two neat chestnut crescents, as if they knew the world was destined to surprise them again and again, and were determined to believe in pleasant surprises."
"Sometimes fear made you angry. Perhaps after years anger cooled, like a sword taken from the forge. Perhaps in the end you were left with something very cold and very sharp."
"But in the name of the most holy, Mosca, of all the people you could have taken up with, why Eponymous Clent?" Because I’d been hoarding words for years, buying them from pedlars and carving them secretly on to bits of bark so I wouldn’t forget them, and then he turned up using words like ‘epiphany’ and ‘amaranth’. Because I heard him talking in the marketplace, laying out sentences like a merchant rolling out rich silks. Because he made words and ideas dance like flames and something that was damp and dying came alive in my mind, the way it hadn’t since they burned my father’s books. Because he walked into Chough with stories from exciting places tangled around him like maypole streamers . . . Mosca shrugged. "He’s got a way with words."
I guess I shouldn't be surprised that a book so dedicated to the love of reading and words captivated me because I'm a sucker for that kind of thing. But this book doesn't try to play off those feelings, it takes them and makes the most of all the potential and power that words can have. It's brimming with ideas, rich world-building, lovely moments, and whenever I think about it I can't help smiling. I think I forgot to mention that it's hilarious too. Just.... read this book, stat. ...more
Meh... after catching a few reviews of this in magazines and such, I thought I was going to love it. Dark, twisty, unpredictable plot where no one andMeh... after catching a few reviews of this in magazines and such, I thought I was going to love it. Dark, twisty, unpredictable plot where no one and nothing is what it seems? Hells yes! But I guess the problem there is that once I'm expecting the unexpected, the unexpected isn't so great anymore. The big plot twist wasn't as shocking as I would've hoped-- but maybe that's just because my mind works in crazy ways and my first assumption was that Amy had faked her death. I was actually thinking, wait, weren't we supposed to think she faked her death? No, you weren't, you silly crazy speculation-machine :P (I read and watch way too many mystery/plot twisty stories. My second thought was, nah, faking her death is too obvious. It had to be something EVEN BETTER. Alas.) My other silly personal problem with this book is that it's also very much the kind of adult-y book that makes me feel so exasperated with the way 'adult' books are written. I just can't finish them. It gets boring. There's lots of self-indulgent random rambling about non-important details, and it just goes on and on; it came across like it was trying too hard to be edgy and witty and hip-- sometimes I just want the dialogue or the story to be enough, minus the convoluted bloated descriptions surrounding every thought; the main characters aren't the least bit likable (likable isn't the best word; I'm not looking for blandly pleasant people, but I also didn't care about them or what they did because everyone in the book was an a-hole in some form or another) and I ran out of reasons to keep reading. (Am I ever going to find this kind of writing not-boring? Is it going to happen when I'm 40, or something? Because really, I'll start one of these non-YA books thinking, wow, this looks so interesting, and then inevitably it becomes this big boring draggy slog and pointlessness. Where is the tension? Why do I find it so boring??? I agree that the narrators are very distinct, which is apparently uncommon, but compared to the varied voices/narrators in stuff like Jaclyn Moriarty's books that's nothing.)...more