This book wrecked me, and everyone needs to read it. The prose is sweeping and intense and heart-pounding, and women dominate this story from cover toThis book wrecked me, and everyone needs to read it. The prose is sweeping and intense and heart-pounding, and women dominate this story from cover to cover. Also the last page literally made me burst into tears, alarming my family. Can't say why because spoilers, but my goodness gracious.
I'm going to write a better review tomorrow when I can talk past my feelings, but holy crap. HOLY. CRAP. ...more
The Young Elites is a series best read cold--knowing anything about the plot might elicit expectations that won't be met. Instead, I'd encourage readeThe Young Elites is a series best read cold--knowing anything about the plot might elicit expectations that won't be met. Instead, I'd encourage readers to go in and let Adelina guide you through her story. That said, Adelina Amouteru is not the easiest YA heroine to know, and her polarizing characterization will likely inspire debate between readers, even as they continue to turn the pages.
THIS SERIES IS EVERYTHING I COULD HAVE ASKED FOR AND MORE.
I remember first learning about A Darker Shade of Magic, and wondering if I might enjoy it.THIS SERIES IS EVERYTHING I COULD HAVE ASKED FOR AND MORE.
I remember first learning about A Darker Shade of Magic, and wondering if I might enjoy it. When I read it, I couldn't remember why I had hesitated. Kell and Lila were characters I would have followed anywhere they went, and in A Gathering of Shadows, I followed them, and Rhy, and Holland, into the dark, and out, and back again.
A Conjuring of Light buoys hope, gives a reminder of what is possible even in the midst of impossibility after impossibility. It is a story of sacrifice and truth, and its characters are beautifully, terrifyingly human. V.E. Schwab has created a masterpiece through Kell, Lila, Holland, and Rhy's hands and blood and hope, and I am so grateful to have lived through it....more
Caraval isn't a terrible book. It just didn't manage to keep my attention for longer than a few minutes at a time, which is why it took me a month toCaraval isn't a terrible book. It just didn't manage to keep my attention for longer than a few minutes at a time, which is why it took me a month to circle back and actually finish reading it.
The prose was very dependent on showy metaphors, which don't appeal to me now as much as they did when I was a teen. Scarlett's personality wasn't as engaging as I hoped to find, and Julian went from interestingly flirty to creepy real fast. I don't know, there's something about a dude saying "you never know, you might actually enjoy it...A lot of girls would feel lucky to be you." that just sends alarm bells off in my head. It's not the kind of flirting that makes me want to see where their "romance" will go....more
This was my first Kate Elliott book and what an introduction it was. I loved Jes's spark and stubbornness, and Kal was a lovely match for her. Super sThis was my first Kate Elliott book and what an introduction it was. I loved Jes's spark and stubbornness, and Kal was a lovely match for her. Super super glad to have the sequel in my hands to read now!...more
Sometimes expectations can make or break a book, setting up promises that the story itself can't fulfill. Into the Dim is unfortunately one such exampSometimes expectations can make or break a book, setting up promises that the story itself can't fulfill. Into the Dim is unfortunately one such example. Pitched as "Outlander for teens," the book never really earns that comparison, and for that matter, it doesn't earn the emotional involvement it asks from its readers.
Here's the thing: Outlander is a series that promises a package of time travel, ethical dilemmas, intricate costumes, and a romance that serves more than just fuzzy feelings. Claire and Jamie's love story makes the historical backdrop that much more epic, and it humanizes these characters, giving them (and in turn, the reader) stakes to protect. We care about what happens to Scotland because we care about Jamie, and we care about Jamie because we care about Claire. We want their happiness and well-being, and we're willing to follow them across the centuries to see it happen. Without that foundation, what is left to ground us in a 1000-page novel?
It's that perspective that I brought into Taylor's novel, and it's why I found the comparisons lacking and ultimately unfair to Into the Dim. Hope Walton's story isn't nearly as alluring as Claire Beauchamp's, but it shouldn't have to try and be something it isn't. Into the Dim is a decent time-travel story, with historical details that are just specific enough to paint the set, and characters that fill predictable roles.
Hope is the centre of the novel, and the first few pages are designed solely to get her moving towards Scotland, not to help the reader connect to her. We get a list of traits--photographic memory, gift for languages, claustrophobia--but no real personality beyond that. She isn't close to her father, but the distance between them feels contrived to push her into the arms of her mother's family, which is of course convenient for the plot. As main characters go, Hope checks off specific boxes, but doesn't feel like a real person.
Her mother's secret is easy to figure out, and there is very little satisfaction in seeing Hope learn about it. Any comparison to Outlander would overshadow Hope's discoveries completely, because there's no emotional weight to them, not like Claire's as she finds herself separated from a husband she loves. Hope doesn't have a reason to care about her mother's family, or her father's. So why should the reader care? It's a hard question to answer, one that doesn't get any easier to figure out as Taylor develops a love triangle for Hope to muddle over. Neither boy is particularly appealing, nor is it clear what it is they see in Hope.
Things aren't much better with the supporting cast, all of whom are simply okay. I struggled to keep the characters straight in my head even while I was reading the book, because I could only recognize them as the traits they represented: the cynical one, the bubbly one, the wise one. We aren't given enough time to really get to know them, and Hope doesn't really care if we do either. When you don't care about the characters populating the story, it's hard to care about the story itself, or the ways it could go wrong. All in all, Into the Dim is a book that's asked to fill a position it can't, to be sweeping and epic and captivating with very little emotional connection.
When I read The Girl from Everywhere last year, I was astonished by what Heidi Heilig had crafted. Nix's story resonated with me in ways both beautifuWhen I read The Girl from Everywhere last year, I was astonished by what Heidi Heilig had crafted. Nix's story resonated with me in ways both beautiful and hard, as all the best stories do. With The Ship Beyond Time, Heilig has pressed Nix and her journey further, deeper, creating a narrative of loss and devotion and belief that I know I will revisit for the rest of my life. Heilig's writing is as clever and honest as it is creative and daring. There are things I can't explain about my connection to Nix--they are very personal and unique to me--but I can say that I feel heard. I feel understood, in all my foibles and weaknesses and strengths. I'll always be grateful for that....more