**spoiler alert** I thought this story was asinine. I'd leave it at that, but that feels like bad karma, so let me elaborate. The first 12 pages were**spoiler alert** I thought this story was asinine. I'd leave it at that, but that feels like bad karma, so let me elaborate. The first 12 pages were really intriguing. Pages 13-20 were less so. By page 25 I was rolling my eyes.
Don't YA readers deserve a plot that makes sense? I think they do. But by page 25 of this book I was being asked by the author to suspend disbelief in such dramatic ways that I found myself no longer able to fulfill his requests. And things only got worse from there. The "plot" such as it is became more and more flawed, the actions we were asked to believe more and more asinine.
Asinine plot. In this book a worldwide zombie epidemic is healed and reversed when a living girl falls in love with a zombie. And even if you can accept that a live girl would fall in love with, and HUG AND KISS AND SLEEP NAKED NEXT TO a zombie who ate her boyfriend, the author then requires you to accept that ~love~ can reverse the physical symptoms of zombie-ism. Nevermind the physical damage a zombie incurs. Nope. Don't worry about that. They magically heal, due to love! Bodies regenerate! Blood comes from nowhere! They're all forgiven by society even though they've committed bazillions of murders! I'm sorry. That's just...ASININE.
These plot flaws could have been mitigated. For instance, if it weren't traditional zombie-ism, but rather a magical curse. Halfway through the author does try to sort-of shift to this. He should have rewritten and done the book that way from the start. If it was a magical curse, the reader could perhaps accept that magic could regenerate the bodies. But that's not how the author handles it. Oh well.
Also, I do not accept that ~love~ could cure zombieism, even if it was zombieism caused by a magical curse. Are you telling me that this is the first human to love a zombie? Bah. If my husband turned into a zombie I'd have locked him in the back room and loved the hell out of him for months before I finally bashed his head in with a rock. What makes THIS love more special than MY love, ya kno wut I'm sayin?
And the Romeo and Juliet overlay to the whole book. Sigh.
I would try another Isaac Marion book because I actually thought his first 12 pages were brilliant. But I require a believable plot next time. Next time, I won't stagger through the whole book like a zombie, hoping for plot. I'll just fold up the book on page 25 and move on with my life. ...more
This book is essentially the literary equivalent of Hot Wings Doritos. You're a little bit embarrassed to admit it, but sometimes you buy a bag of thoThis book is essentially the literary equivalent of Hot Wings Doritos. You're a little bit embarrassed to admit it, but sometimes you buy a bag of those and wolf 'em down when you're alone watching Judge Judy. No shame in that. That is the same experience you will have with this book.
The book is occasionally tacky and full of flaws. I am frankly a little appalled that "retarded" was not removed by the editor, as the main character and others use it somewhat frequently, and it's a needlessly tasteless and mean insult to use. The book is careful not to be tacky in many OTHER ways (such as descriptions of sex and body parts), so why is it so tasteless with that word choice? I don't know, I don't know.
Secondly, you can tell the book was initially published as a web serial, because every few pages you get to a cliffhanger kind of line, and you know that must have been the cliffhanger for the blog that week. They did not smooth out or remove those lines when the made this into a book, apparently.
Thirdly, this is totally a "guy's book," and by that, I DON'T mean, "a book for men" or "a book about men" "or a book written by men" or anything like that. I mean, it's for "GUYS". Like, think of the Spike network and cram all their programming into book form and there you go. Despite this, the book got its hooks in me and I kept reading.
300-something pages later, the book ended. The plot had been wishy-washy, the characters ultimately uninteresting--I did not care if any of them lived or died, at all--but for some reason I felt disappointed that there was not another chapter to read. Or ten more chapters.
I was entertained. What can I say? I admit to really liking this book. ...more
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It starts as a quaint sort of bullying tale and slowly becomes something else. This was the first book in ages that haI thoroughly enjoyed this book. It starts as a quaint sort of bullying tale and slowly becomes something else. This was the first book in ages that has given me nightmares. I slept uneasy last night, dreaming that I was the main character and wondering how in the world I could continue living life after the worst of the incidents comes to pass (I'm trying to write this without spoiling it, and it's hard).
I'm not much of a fan of 1st person narratives, but this one worked for me. I completely bought the tone and details relayed. I also bought the tone and details of the plot--horrific as the incidents are. For me, the author has skillfully enough built the characters that I accept the choices they make. There was one hiccup in this structuring for me when the women are deciding what to do following the most horrific incident--I thought the reasoning of the mother could have been a bit better relayed and elaborated upon.
My only disappointment about the book is that it's told looking back at events that are only a few months in the past. I'd have much preferred it if the narrator was a bit older and further past the incidents--maybe 19 instead of 16--so that there could be a kind of coda to the book in which she described how the incidents of the story influenced her and changed her everyday life as the years had gone by.
I loved it. It was an unexpected horror novel, in a way. A horrific story. ...more
I'm not a reader of middle-grades books, and I didn't realize that's what this was until I'd already read the first chapter. Basically, I felt like thI'm not a reader of middle-grades books, and I didn't realize that's what this was until I'd already read the first chapter. Basically, I felt like this book was okay. I believed the plot and felt bad for the kid throughout, but my rub with the book was this: the ELEPHANT part felt forced to me. And of course, that's problem since the whole title of the book and thematic overlay of the book is about elephants. Perhaps it would work for children--like I said, I'm not a middle-grades reader--but it didn't really "work" for me, as an adult. ...more
This is a cute little book about a self-absorbed professor who does not realize that he's ridiculous. I liked it, but the book really seems like threeThis is a cute little book about a self-absorbed professor who does not realize that he's ridiculous. I liked it, but the book really seems like three separate short stories featuring the same characters. I think the book would have functioned better presented that way. Overall, though, I liked it. ...more
I wanted to be impressed with this book but the author unfortunately made herself (and therefore her stances) seem unreliable. Here is an example of wI wanted to be impressed with this book but the author unfortunately made herself (and therefore her stances) seem unreliable. Here is an example of what I mean.
On page 91 of my copy, marked by note 127, is a quote from a physician asserting the following: "The myth that soy is a health food has led many parents to believe that soy milk is a complete and nourishing food not only for adults but for babies and children." I take no issue with the quote. Maybe soy is great for you, maybe it isn't. It could be bad for kids and babies. This physician feels it's not such a wonderful product.
The part that bothers me and seems deliberately inflammatory is the second half of the statement, in which Deville says that this quote was taken from a "newsletter that discusses the possible link between soy milk and the death of three-month-old Brooklyn twins."
So at this point, my eyes popped out of my head. What? Soy milk was involved in the death of some babies?! But why does Deville not explain further? And then my alarm settled a bit and I realized that she doesn't explain further because there is nothing to explain. If soy milk had been clearly fingered as a contributing cause of the death of these children, she'd have been more explicit. In fact, I looked it all up and it took 20 minutes but I did find that although the children drank soy milk prior to their deaths, there is no publicly declared explanation for their deaths.
But why did I, the reader, have to do research to get a full understanding of Deville's research? That's not how this is supposed to work. Oh well.
EDIT: I feel that I should add that I do not fundamentally disagree with Deville's assertions in general; I agree that factory foodstuffs are hugely problematic, etc, etc. I was rubbed the wrong way by her over-the-top rhetoric which surges forth every few pages and by her alarmist tendencies. ...more
This is a first-person account from a young guy who's in a touring cover band. He has kind of a shaky relationship with his father and women, etc. YouThis is a first-person account from a young guy who's in a touring cover band. He has kind of a shaky relationship with his father and women, etc. You know. Kind of your standard coming-of-age stuff. This character is a complete fluff-brain. He has almost no thoughts about anything, and the author conveys this convincingly and well. By the end of the book, he's having thoughts, but they're still pretty elementary ones. Nevertheless, it's interesting to watch the character "evolve" to that point.
There wasn't anything particularly moving about the events relayed. I didn't feel like crying or dancing or celebrating or mourning, but somehow the book kept me reading. Were I the editor, I'd have cut about 30 pages near the end of the book because (for me) it began to drag. Other than that, I did enjoy it. ...more
This book was okay, but I didn't love it. First of all, it's classified (at my local library at least) as Christian Fiction but it's loaded with murdeThis book was okay, but I didn't love it. First of all, it's classified (at my local library at least) as Christian Fiction but it's loaded with murders. Loaded. That surprised me. Secondly, the narrative spends a lot of time with the killer and I don't really enjoy books in which I have to follow the killer around. I don't like being "near" the killer. And thirdly, I found one of the character arcs completely boring and skipped those parts after the first 50 pages or so. Still, it was an okay book. If you like murders, you might like this book. ...more
The book opened with a detailed description of the nobility system in the story, and then I realized the story was written in 1st person. I often haveThe book opened with a detailed description of the nobility system in the story, and then I realized the story was written in 1st person. I often have trouble "getting into" first person. Nevertheless, I continued reading and after the first five pages or so, the story-telling "smoothed out" for me and I began really to enjoy the book.
Unfortunately, the whole thing fell flat for me around page 140, which is the beginning of section 4 of the book. For the next 80 pages or so one character describes events that occurred a decade earlier. This did not work for me AT ALL. I'd have much preferred the book START at this point and we could have been a part of the events as they unfolded. Why not let us live that decade with the character? This 80 page section lacked emotional punch (for me), and quickly began to feel like a history lecture.
I pushed through to the end of the book but I never recovered from this long, oddly-handled stretch of the story. It's a shame, too, because I'm not really a fantasy reader, so it was kind of amazing that the first 140 pages of the book had reeled me in. If the story had managed to keep me enthralled, it would have been the mark of a very good book indeed. As it stands, though, I can only give it 2 stars. It had a lot of promise but it lost me. ...more
This book is cute and funny, but the author "lays it on thick," and after a while the cute and funny stuff began to feel cloying to me. It might be juThis book is cute and funny, but the author "lays it on thick," and after a while the cute and funny stuff began to feel cloying to me. It might be just right for you.
Despite my feeling that the author was overdoing it, and despite the fact that there are parts of the plot that I find implausible, the book was fun enough to keep me reading. This is a good airplane read or beach read, and it doesn't try to pretend that it's anything more than that....more
I had high hopes for this book. I enjoyed the first 50 pages or so very much, but then...well...
I wish I'd have quit this book on page 80-something whI had high hopes for this book. I enjoyed the first 50 pages or so very much, but then...well...
I wish I'd have quit this book on page 80-something when the icky sex scene occurred. I had a feeling I should quit, but instead I plowed through, waiting and waiting for something really cool to happen.
The book is divided into three sections. Section one could have been cut by about 30%. Section two was pretty good. Section three was boring to me. Very boring.
There was an icky sex scene in the first section that didn't feel true to the 19-year-old character. Later sex scenes, when she was older, were better but still seemed like afterthoughts. The relationship that the character was in was treated only superficially and could have been cut altogether.
People say this writer is good at sci-fi. It's a shame that this book is a big ol' turkey since it is my first exposure to him. Oh well.
I love this book. The author wrote it during the 1940s and she did a beautiful job of capturing the time period. I was completely swept up in the detaI love this book. The author wrote it during the 1940s and she did a beautiful job of capturing the time period. I was completely swept up in the details of the environment and family/friend dynamics of the time and how they are different/similar to today's interactions. The book makes me wonder which texts written now will carefully capture the 2010s for readers in the 2070s.
I know some found the plot slow, but I loved every minute of it, and I loved the characters as well. It's different from many modern YA romances but completely worth a read. ...more
This book is divided into three main sections and the third one was definitely the one that most drew me in. I won't recap the plot since other reviewThis book is divided into three main sections and the third one was definitely the one that most drew me in. I won't recap the plot since other reviews have done that, but I will say that the third act is very well done. I am not bothered by the fact that the teens accept their profiles with little rebellion. It seems plausible to me that they would behave that way. I am a little suspicious of the idea that the parents of the negatively profiled aren't all up in arms--and it seems to me that if the parents got all fired up, the kids would get fired up too. However, since this is a young YA, it makes sense that the parents and their opinions of things are pretty much left out of the storytelling--it's not about them, after all.
For me, The Predicteds is a YA novel that would most successfully accomplish its intended goals with a reading audience of tweens. The drama, humor, relationships, etc, would be absolutely scintillating to a tween. I have seen other reviews that recommend this for 14+ but in my opinion I'd recommend this for 12+....more