tatterpunk's Reviews > Team Human

Team Human by Justine Larbalestier
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did not like it

Oh, book.

I WANTED to give you three, maybe even four stars! (Which may not sound like much, but check out my shelves -- I am super picky.) I loved your voice and verve, even if some of the dialogue and world-building made me wonder if your authors were better suited for writing middle grade, rather than the more complex world of young adults.

But then then last twenty pages. (view spoiler)

So, let me break it down for you.

Black people are not vampires.

Brown people are not vampires.

Queer people are not vampires.

Women are not vampires.

Disabled people are not vampires.

Stop coding real-life people with real-life problems because of systematic oppression as undead creatures of the night who feed on the blood of the living.

Saying "I respect your humanity, despite our cosmetic or cultural differences" is not the same as "I respect your humanity even though you don't really have any, but you LOOK human, even though you don't act at all like us and sometimes people die because of it, but I guess that's good enough." NOT THE SAME.

In conclusion: one sad little star.


EDIT: Okay, for all my frothy rage, it struck me that the "black people as scary vampires" trope HAS been done, and done well. (Nalo Hopkinson writes about the Blade movies, brilliantly, here -- http://nalohopkinson.com/writing/nonf... -- with a warning for all three movies and how the last two kind of take the trope from "self-aware and subversive" to "unfortunately straight-faced") So I'm wrong: you can code oppressed minorities as mythological creatures (and even True Blood gets it right sometimes) and still deliver a smart, sophisticated narrative.

But this wasn't what happened with "Team Human."
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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
September 9, 2013 – Shelved

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