**spoiler alert** I really don't know what to say about this one. I wanted to like it. I listened to some of the audiobook, maybe up to chapter 8 or s**spoiler alert** I really don't know what to say about this one. I wanted to like it. I listened to some of the audiobook, maybe up to chapter 8 or so, which was very well read and well performed, but the story itself left something, which is hard to put on my finger on, to be desired. Still, the prose itself is beautiful, vivid, descriptive.
I did like the idea of the plot, but not so much the plot itself. I liked the idea of this self-described weird little town called Fairfold, where humans and faeries exist side by side—where humans know of the fae and have seen them or made bargains with them. I liked the idea of presenting the faeries as something closer to the "Grimm Fairy Tales" version—no sugarcoating the cruelty and murderous intentions and actions of some or most of Fairfold's forest people. I liked the idea of Jack, Carter's changeling "brother" living among the humans, raised as a human while still feeling the pull of his own forest kin.
I'm still partially intrigued to know what happens, but I also kind of don't care. Hazel, her brother Ben, the horned boy, now awake after apparently centuries asleep in a glass coffin by Hazel's own hand—it's all a jumble of oddness. Hazel's "innocent" flirtations, her strange bargain with the Folk on behalf of her brother, her half crush on Jack (who may also be crushing her back), her past "faerie hunting"—I'm not sure what to make of it. Plus, I can't help but find it a little strange that both Hazel and Ben have huge crushes on the horned boy (and maybe Jack does too). The whole thing, the whole plot, seems to be a jumble. It's part mystery/suspense, which adds a degree of thrill, but it also, for me at least, seems to be dragging out a plot point that should have already been revealed. (Not sure how many pages the book is, or where I was in the audiobook, so it was hard to tell if the pacing wasn't right or if I was on the verge of some "big reveal".)
I don't know. I say again that I really thought this would be "my type of book" and that I wanted to like it more, but I guess it's just not for me. Giving it 3 stars because I enjoyed the talented performer who read the story, but for overall plot it's really more a 2.5. ...more
I loved this book. I honestly believe it was not long enough, as I could have easily gone on reading about these characters for another 600 pages. I fI loved this book. I honestly believe it was not long enough, as I could have easily gone on reading about these characters for another 600 pages. I found this novel nearly unputdownable, so chock-full it was with intricate, detailed plotlines with nearly perfect payoffs and subplots, rich, flawed, humanistic characters, like Vic, and Maggie, and an epic ending battle worthy of such a lengthy but well-earned journey.
The only parts I didn't love to pieces were the descriptions of Bing and all his disgusting, disturbing problems, as well as whenever Bing and Manx were together, and the last chapter, just because I took Maggie's Scrabble tiles meaning to be a spiritual returning, not an actual, physical return to the world. But those things aside, I was very much in love with this story. This is the third of Joe Hill's books I've read and I've loved each one, in spite of the graphic violence, the dark subject matter, the horror of them all. I also loved the reference made to Hill's first novel "Heart-Shaped Box", very cool to see.
**spoiler alert** Since I just finished "The Sugar Queen" and found it such a fast, fun, light read, I decided to jump right into this one. This one w**spoiler alert** Since I just finished "The Sugar Queen" and found it such a fast, fun, light read, I decided to jump right into this one. This one was also a fast, fun, light read, but I did find the plot of this one too be a little too sappy for my taste. There wasn't enough conflict for this to feel like something other than spun sugar fiction, and because of it, the characters came off as too quirky and two-dimensional. I was also slightly bothered by a few things.
Emily is supposedly in the stages of grieving since she recently lost her mother to a car accident, but she doesn't show any signs of grief other than to think, after she first arrives, that coming to the little town where her mother used to live was a bad idea and later panicking over losing her mother's charm bracelet. She very quickly falls in love and/or is intrigued by the most handsome boy in the whole town who, of course, has a deep, dark, guarded secret. The only way that she really "connects" to the loss of her mother is by discovering that her mother was a completely different animal when she was a teenager (and had also lost her own mother at a fairly young age) who became the town pariah and was basically forced to leave town.
For teenagers, Emily and Win just seem much too self-aware to actually have the perspectives they do. They also seem too mature for their age to approach their budding relationship the way they do, in spite of each having his/her own complicated backstory. The whole thing might have been more believable if the pair had been in their twenties, but at 17? It was a hard sell for me.
I also had a hard time finding out the truth of the half-truth of who was bad and who was good when it came to that fateful night at the bandstand twenty years ago with Dulcie and Logan. It just seemed almost ridiculous to have it tacked on at the end of the story that Dulcie wasn't actually the "bad seed" while Logan might have been (or perhaps just troubled), but that it was "okay" for Dulcie to take the blame for the consequences, leave town and try for the rest of her life to find redemption. This knowledge made Dulcie's quest for redemption in her later years almost have a false note. If she had been so in love with Logan and then horrified by his secret reveal, did she also feel betrayed when he did that to her and then killed himself and left her to face the music? Or did she feel that she had somehow "betrayed" him for reacting the way she did? (Also, Emily and Win "reenacting the 'history loop'" of Dulcie and Logan's long ago relationship was almost too over the top.)
And then there was Julia and Sawyer. Well, I guess I'll give them a pass. They were dealing with more "real life" drama with just a touch of the magical side of the south, which was actually kind of sweet, so having them get a happy ending together (and with their long ago adopted daughter) was okay.
In spite of these few "grievances", I did enjoy reading this book overall. It's a good, fun, light, romantic read. A good beach or afternoon read. ...more
I was so excited to read this, but unfortunately it's not an exciting read. I held on for past the requisite 50 pages and found myself bored. I'd stilI was so excited to read this, but unfortunately it's not an exciting read. I held on for past the requisite 50 pages and found myself bored. I'd still like to read it but only as an audiobook, maybe. Maybe not.
Ever since I read Aimee Bender's collection of short stories, "The Girl In the Flammable Shirt" (which I loved to pieces), I've hoped to find this level of love for her other works but I keep ending up disappointed. I hated "Willful Creatures" (of what I did manage to read) and now there's this. I had such high expectations and again, absolutely no delivery (up to about page 55 or so). I really didn't like any of the characters, and all I kept thinking was how Rose was just going to starve to death eventually or go insane while trying to eat. ...more