Oh lord, I'm totally outing myself to the internet that I used to be one of those. A fanfiction writer. Someon...moreRainbow Rowell, were you me in college?
Oh lord, I'm totally outing myself to the internet that I used to be one of those. A fanfiction writer. Someone who played in other people's playgrounds, and participated in the online fandom community. I never got to Cath's level of fame, but I had my own small following, and I was pretty damn good if I do say so myself. I could have written the sections where Cath's trying to explain the draw of fanfiction. Rowell gets it so right.
But at the heart of this story, it's not fanfiction. It's a girl on the cusp of becoming an adult who must learn to function outside her comfort zone. In short, it is the college experience for a introverted geek who was more comfortable on the Internet than in real life. (Oh, hi again, that was me. Still am if I'm to be honest with myself. Only instead of fandom, it's ravelry.)
In case you haven't figured it out yet, I identified painfully so with Cath. I remember nights I forewent going to the dining hall for dinner, preferring to eat cold Chef Boyardee from the can in solace.
I fell in love hard with this book. I loved all the characters, I loved Cath and Levi and Wren and Reagan. I smiled while reading this book, and I was so disappointed when it ended because it ended! It can't end! I loved it too much! (Truthfully, if this book's ending had been more satisfying, this probably would have been five stars.)
This book pissed me off. I've ignored how glaringly stupid Gin was and she should have been dead before the first book, but this book, I couldn't igno...moreThis book pissed me off. I've ignored how glaringly stupid Gin was and she should have been dead before the first book, but this book, I couldn't ignore it any more.
1) A small army of bounty hunters is in town gunning for you, and you know a number of them had eaten in your restaurant but you don't know who all of them all. Of course it makes total sense to discuss your super secret plan to kill Mab WHILE IN YOUR RESTAURANT WHILE THERE ARE STILL CUSTOMERS.
2) Secret ID, what secret ID? In book 1 she invites a police detective who hates her into her home and reveals her identity to him. It's a miracle she didn't blow her ID to the entire world halfway through book 2 given all the freaking number of times she shows up for a job as Gin and not in disguise, or the random people she just tells it to. Seriously. WTF.
3) Her weapons of choice are knives. Close contact weapons. And when she is smart enough to go for her target at a distance, she uses... a crossbow? I don't even...
4) It's a freaking trap. She knows it's a freaking trap. Everyone tells her it's a freaking trap. What does she do? Walk into the freaking trap. *headdesk*
Not to mention she contradicts herself in throwaway narrative. She didn't remember being rich as a child... but she remembers her family's servants got killed that night Mab went after her family. Riiiight. Because non-rich people have servants, or courtyards with fountains.
One positive thing though was that Estep's writing was better. There wasn't the info dump of backstory that was characteristic of the previous books. THANK GOD. Though she still uses the same phrases to describe the same things. I never ever want to hear "gin joint" again. Also, "baby sister." And does Estep really need to make the point that Gin takes her "little white pills" before every book's obligatory sex scene? The horse is dead; you can stop beating it.
And the final fight scene was just... ugh. Magical deus ex machina.
Estep really needs to cut out the info dumps. They get on my nerves. This is just going to keep being a complaint for me because it appears that not k...moreEstep really needs to cut out the info dumps. They get on my nerves. This is just going to keep being a complaint for me because it appears that not knowing how to subtly reveal backstory is one of Estep's faults.
Though! Plot! Moving forward! I do appreciate the fast clip Estep's moving through the overarching storyline, unlike some other writers' glacial plot development (Carrie Vaughn's Kitty Norville series comes to mind - I love the books, love the characters, but dear lord is the Long Game becoming a long game).(less)
For a supposedly master assassin, Gin sucks at stealth. Mab and her minions must be the dumbest baddies around because Gin isn't exactly acting not-su...moreFor a supposedly master assassin, Gin sucks at stealth. Mab and her minions must be the dumbest baddies around because Gin isn't exactly acting not-suspicious hanging out where she isn't supposed to be.
That said, I did enjoy this book. These books are crack. I know the writing isn't that great and the main character isn't up to romance TSTL levels but considering she's an assassin is TSTL. But I can't stop reading.(less)
I had to force my way through the first few chapters in this book, particularly with the info-dumpish way Estep tells the back story (I read the first...moreI had to force my way through the first few chapters in this book, particularly with the info-dumpish way Estep tells the back story (I read the first book, thanks. I don't really need a rehash of its plot). Remember how you always knew the second chapter in all the Baby-Sitter's Club books was going to be introducing every single member of the club? I always skipped those. I wish I could have skipped Estep's info dump.
However after the initial annoyance, the plot moved quickly and I sped through the book. Estep does know how to keep my attention, and after I finished the book, I immediately started the next one.(less)
Looking at some of the other reviews, I'm supremely glad I picked up the audiobook instead of the actual book. It worked wonderfully as an audiobook....moreLooking at some of the other reviews, I'm supremely glad I picked up the audiobook instead of the actual book. It worked wonderfully as an audiobook. Like, amazingly so. I actually remember listening to one particular part and wondering just how that was going to translate into text (apparently, the answer to that was not very well).
This is a tongue-in-cheek guide to Earth to the aliens who find the planet after humans have all destroyed ourselves. It's pretty hilarious, if you're okay with the fact that this book is basically making fun of us (for the record, I am, because we are a truly ridiculous species).
Really glad I picked this up several years ago when I had eye surgery. I only wish I'd listened to it sooner.(less)