Becky's Reviews > Storybound

Storybound by Marissa Burt
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Dec 05, 14

bookshelves: debut-author-challenge
Read from November 21 to December 04, 2014

Well this took a turn.
The tone this book starts out with is very middle grade, very fun, very simple prose. I didn't enjoy it, I thought character motivation was sometimes unclear among other faults, but it was fine and fun. Then very abruptly things got quite dark, but the prose didn't shift to match. It was weird. Events became very dark but the way they were told... wasn't. I don't know how to make that make sense for you. There was no further interiority and no help from the narration. For instance, at one point, Peter thinks that Sam is dead and the best the narrator can do for his grief is to say "when all his tears were spent he carefully picked up the body" or something to that extent (the book is all the way across the room and I don't want to get up to check). It keeps that fast moving, unfocused narration but suddenly it's dealing with things that really need to be better dealt with. He's dead, but let's move along, shall we? That kind of prose worked in the beginning when it was a fairly safe adventure story, but it felt SO out of place later in the book. How can you expect me to grieve with a character if I don't even see him grieve?
PLUS, and this one really gets me, when Snow and her mother are kidnapped, the bad guys are trying to get the mother to talk. Snow can't see what's happening, but she hears the boss say to the other guy "fine then, have your fun," and then her mother started screaming. So.... rape or torture. And both are VERY wrong for this book. Alarmingly so. I was shocked when I read that. Up until that point it was very middle grade. And, I mean, Percy Jackson is middle grade and has lots of violence and such, but this book does not read like Percy Jackson, it doesn't have the prosaic sophistication to deal with this stuff. To find out what happened to her you have to read the next book, which I don't know if I'm going to do. I don't want to support rape or torture in middle grade books.
It's like half way through the book a decision was made that it needed to appeal to older audiences, so they tried to make it darker or something. That's very much what it felt like. Because something like that should never have been in this book.
So, I don't know, it reads too young for older readers, but it has stuff that's too sketchy for younger readers. It felt disjointed, and like it was trying to be too many things.
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Reading Progress

11/21 marked as: currently-reading
11/27 page 124
29.0% "This is a deceptively short book."
12/04 marked as: read

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