Torzilla's Reviews > Pegasus

Pegasus by Robin McKinley
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Mar 26, 2010

liked it
bookshelves: arc, reviewed

I was so excited to receive a copy of PEGASUS before the release date! Not only is the cover of this book breathtaking, but it also sounded like such an interesting and unique premise. And, to make things even better, I was getting a break from all the YA romances out there.

The first 50 or so pages of this book bored me to tears. It pretty much consisted of a huge info dump that I could not appreciate due to my unfamiliarity with the world and its inhabitants. The book also reminded me of all those history books I had to read back in high school. Not a great start because of that.

The shift from memories, the journal entries, and present encounters is too subtle to the point of being jarring. So much, in fact, that I found myself continually rereading paragraphs and pages in a failed attempt to regain my bearings. That, of course, distracted me enough from the actual story, which made this more of a chore than something I would enjoy. If one thing frustrated me most about this book, it was that. I prefer knowing when I'm reading about the past, the present, or something that indirectly influences the story arc. I also wish that ALL of Sylvie's thoughts were italicized so that it did not blend in with the rest of the text, though this could have been addressed in the final copy (I was reading an ARC).

And example of the shift: within the first 200 pages, Sylvie went from being 12, to 15, back to 12, then back to 15 again. There was no warning when the memories would shift back to her being 12, nor were there any warnings of when she suddenly skipped a few years ahead in age.

Everything that dealt with Sylvie's life minus Ebon, her unicorn companion, bored me. I don't mind reading about politics, but I felt the politics in this book was overkill. The friendship between a girl and her pegasus was what intrigued me about this story, and I loved the sections that focused on their friendship. Everything else? I was so incredibly tempted to skip sections.

Our villain does not play much of a role in the middle of the book, nor did he truly invoke any sort of apprehension in me. Basically, I viewed him as a joke and I feel the story would have been just as good without him (though there would not be a sequel, if that was the case).

Once Ebon and Sylvie meet, however, the story transforms from a dull history lesson into the story I was anticipating. I loved their first meeting, and the encounters that followed. Like I said earlier, it was their friendship that truly made me appreciate this book. If there was no friendship, if there was no focus on the clash of the two cultures and the consequences of their friendship, this book would have been a DNF.

McKinley definitely knows how to create beautiful worlds, but I do not believe world building is enough to make a successful story. I would have enjoyed more showing over telling, also. Alas, it was difficult to connect with Sylvi due to being told about everything that happened. I felt like I was witnessing this story through a kaleidoscope with lots of static.

PEGASUS was the first title by McKinley I've read. If her other works are like this book, I am unsure of whether or not I'd want to read any of them. Due to how scattered this book was, I spent twice the time reading, and rereading, this story. It also gave me a headache at one point because I felt like all the information was just a tornado of mass confusion within my brain.

As for any future books in this series, I would like to know what happens to Ebon and Sylvi, however, I will not be buying them. Library copies for me. I suggest reading this if you can overlook a bit of the dryness due to the politics. If you love romances, or if you wanted to read more about Sylvie/Ebon, I think you're going to be somewhat disappointed. That is not to say I do not think people should read it. As it is seen, lots of people have enjoyed this story. As for me, it was an okay read.
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