Slight spoilers; most things you can surmise from the blurb.
It has been so ridiculously long since I wrote a review, I hardly know where to start. I'Slight spoilers; most things you can surmise from the blurb.
It has been so ridiculously long since I wrote a review, I hardly know where to start. I'm pretty sure 2014 was my last review. So you can imagine my strong feelings about this book to finally crawl to my computer from my warm, comfortable bed and cat to type out all these paragraphs on my used-to-be-backlit-but-now-I-can-hardly-see-the-keys keyboard.
I guess I should start with my frustration at the reviews I've been reading. I've heard people say Teach is abusive, an asshole, and that this is some cookie-cutter romance cut out of a YA novel; the only one of those things that's true is that Teach is an asshole. But you know what? It makes sense! Sure, he's a douche, but it makes sense for the story. He's been raised in a house that disrespects any colored people, maids, and pretty much anyone without a title. So of course he's not really gonna know how to be nice and pleasant. And abusive? How me one paragraph where he actually hurt Anne.
I'm not defending his actions, not in the slightest. But this is a book that the characters make sense for the background they were given. They all grow and learn as it goes on. Anne starts off rude and unapologetic because she's fighting for what she has and won't let anyone push her around - by the end she's much more willing to compromise, and the same is true for Teach, albeit in a different way.
One thing I will fault majorly is the constant mockery of people who don't like books and care "only" about parties and their looks. It would be different if it appeared that only Teach and Anne saw it this way, but it's pretty clear that the author meant for it to be the truth. I have a Goodreads account, I'm a Goodreads librarian and I have almost 80 reviews in about 2 years. Obviously I love books. But you know what? If someone doesn't like to read, that's okay. It's just not their put of tea. Patience is probably in her late teens(I recall Teach being 19?); it's okay that she wants to party and that she doesn't really take things seriously yet. That doesn't mean she has to be shallow or an idiot. She certainly is in the book, though. And again, if that was just her character that would be fine. But Castoman made it pretty clear out of dialogue that this is just what she thinks of people who don't read and know authors like Milton - they're uncultured, spoiled brats.
Moving off the characters and onto the plot...
Sorry, I can't seem to remember a plot.
Seriously though, there's practically no plot. It's pretty much a repeat of Anne wants to leave, Teach wants to be captain and not marry patience, and Anne and Teach are in love. Which in all honesty, just kind of... worked. I usually hate books like this. But it was actually kind of enjoyable. Their bickering was cute, the romance not rushed or over the top. I HATE in YA books when they love each other at first site, can only talk about their looks, are the most in love couple ever, blah blah blah. This just seemed much more real. It wasn't instant love - instant attraction maybe, but that's completely realistic.
I honestly think the reason so many people hated this was because they expected something different. I've done that before, but only when a book promised to be one thing and turns out to be another. Just read the blurb and you can figure out for yourself that this is pretty much all romance.
Blackhearts isn't for everyone, for sure. If you want pirate battles, adventure, plot, probably just skip this one. But if you are a fool like me and randomly like books like this and can't figure out why, it's an easy read. Just go for it....more
"I was reading this cool book - it was about a bunch of children who were thrown together and forced to play these games to the death."
"No quest"I was reading this cool book - it was about a bunch of children who were thrown together and forced to play these games to the death."
"No questions! So anyway, this one girl volunteered for it and was desperate not to participate-"
"Wait, why did she volunteer if she didn't want to participate?"
"What did I just say? Pay attention. Now, she met this boy who loved her and she said she loved him but really she didn't and he was so shocked in the end when he found out she was faking-"
"Whoa, hold on a minute. What a jerk! Why would she trick him into thinking that if it wasn't true?"
"THERE WAS A REASON! PLOT DETAILS WILL NOT BE DISCUSSED!!!"
This is a bit how reading The Maze Runner was like. You were told bits and pieces, but when asked a why or how, Thomas was told, Shut up! For some reason we will not tell you even though you are smarter than everyone else here and could possibly help us figure this maze out so we can stop being tormented by shucking grievers!
I seriously fail to see how not clueing the reading in on obviously important details for absolutely no reason is helping the novel. All it did was make me think everyone in the Glade is an idiot and doesn't actually want to get out.
Because, guess what? Everyone in the Glade is an idiot.
No one figures out the simplest things without it being explained or "remembered." Dashner treats Thomas like a god because he's so smart he can figure the Glade out, but really he just conveniently remembers everything he needs to at exactly the right time. Also, everything is predictable.
They also make up stupid words like shuck, shuck-face, klunk, and the like. "Why do you say klunk?" "Because that's the noise poop makes when it falls in." Okay... Well when I eat chips it makes a crunching noise, but I don't call eating chips crunching, do I? And shuck? Really? If you want to use swear words, make your book rated R or use normal substitute works like freaking. Why? JUST FREAKING DO IT. (There, now I'm not explaining important review points.)
Also, if someone can explain to me the point of Teresa...
I don't know why she was there, I don't know why they can speak telepathically, and I don't know how [spoiler]she triggered the ending. Oh sorry, I mean The Ending.[/spoiler]
What's with these books all having to capitalize stupid words? I'm surprised klunk and shuck weren't proper nouns. Instead of having grievers, the changing, and the ending - which would have made all those things sound cool - we have Grievers, the Changing, and the Ending. Why? It seems it's only purpose is so test the readers restraint, especially if they got this book from the library. (Oh, you want me to explain that? Yes I don't mind explaining something important because it serves me no purpose for you not to know. Let's put it this way: if I hadn't paid $10 for this book, it would have pen markings practicing my editing skills on all these stupid capitalizations and replacement words.)
If you have this grand theory about the Glade and the reasons behind it, throw them out the window. This is not a unique novel. The ending will not shock you. There are no epic reveals, so don't expect any. Instead, treat this like a light, fluffy read that will pass the time but not really quench your thirst for a good mystery or adventure. I actually enjoyed it myself, but there was such horrible dialogue, plot, and characters that I can't bear to give it a 3 star rating. It's one thing to like a good, it's another to know it's no good. And this, my friends, is no good. ...more