Brendon Barnes

I just came across this at work. It looks DOPE. Does the dialect in it get annoying? Does it dull the intensity of certain moments?

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Gail I'm surprised at how many people found the language difficult -- I loved it, and stopped thinking about it within a few pages. Perhaps the key is not trying to translate it into your own dialect. Just let it wash over you. Like learning any language, you can't necessarily translate every word into your own English, but you learn the sense of them from their sound, from where they sit in a sentence.
elizabeth • paper ghosts Personally, I think the dialect is beautiful. Once you get used to it, it adds a cadence and a rhythm to the narrative that makes it feel like you're really being told this story by this girl.
Jen For me, the dialect pretty quickly stopped being distracting and became an important part of the story. It adds a lyricism that heightened the intensity, if anything. I can rarely get past the whole "white lady writing as a person of color" issue but I think this is a case where it's really well done... maybe not completely unproblematic, but well done in terms of its craft.
Terrill I thought the dialect was lyrical and beautiful--and I heard it in my head all day and night when I wasn't reading. It really added to the book for me.
Rose For me, the dialect became a brilliantly executed element which I was able to adapt to after only a few pages. Some of the word substitutions were actually hilarious. I'm about half finished with the book and so far I've only come across perhaps three words that still puzzle me. I'm flabberghasted by the author's skill in carrying this language device off so well and so consistently. Writing in straightforward English is hard enough; this is an amazing accomplishment on top of richly drawn characters and plotting.
Elaine I agree that the people who hate the patois are trying too hard. Just read. You don't need to translate every word, and it really does turn into poetry. Love it.
Kimk After the first few chapters, you really get in the groove of the language and it becomes familiar, yet poetic. Definitely worth the investment.
Andrea I loved the dialect, in fact it kept making me want to read the book out loud!
Scoobyyatto I couldn't get past the dialect. I understand that it's been 80 years since everything fell apart, but seriously, I want to enjoy a book, not have to decipher every single thing that was said.
Alice The dialect is a lot of work. But the book is brilliant. The dialect makes the book a puzzle that the reader must decipher. It's been 80 years since the world changed. You need to figure out how the language works (it's not that bad) and also how the world works--even more interesting and challenging.
Marisa Bowe The dialect is by far my favorite part.
Jenee Rager I hate the dialect. It is easy to get adjusted to after you read about 10-15 pages... but every time I put the book down and pick it up again I have to readjust to it so the book is taking me forever to read. I'll give big kudos to the author though for being able to sustain that style throughout such a long book.
Raquel Morales I hated the dialect in this book and made it unreadable. Not the book for me.
Lisa We read this book for book club and I noticed the ladies that liked or weren't bothered by the dialect were bilingual and the people that couldn't stand it were monolingual.

My sample size was 10 people, so I'm sure there are people that are monolingual that enjoy it and vice versa, that was just my observation.

Either way, it's really honest. If you had several generations of the oldest people being teenagers and occasionally early 20's, the speech would be drastically different.
Julie Stout No. It helps your reading if you know French.
Jill I found the dialect to be beyond distracting, especially when you first begin the book. I lost count of how many times I *almost* quit this book in the first 50% of the text. I'm glad I finished it and you develop a better understanding of the language as you go along. But I wouldn't go out of my way to recommend it to a friend, because it was, frankly, an annoying read despite the depth of the story.
Monica I finally finished it. The dialect never became poetic for me. It wasn't until page 562 that I realized a certain word was supposed to be 'precious'. Maybe since I am no longer able to read uninterrupted, I don't have the patience to figure out they lyricism. I am more plot driven, and I was confused in spots, had to go back and re-read parts.
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by Sandra Newman (Goodreads Author)
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