The Sword and Laser discussion

All the Birds in the Sky
This topic is about All the Birds in the Sky
209 views
All The Birds In The Sky > ATBITS: I adore Patricia and Laurence

Comments Showing 1-35 of 35 (35 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Tom, Supreme Laser (new) - rated it 5 stars

Tom Merritt (tommerritt) | 1151 comments Mod
I know I'm jumping the gun here since it's not quite March 1 (damn leap day)

But I got started on ATBITS and I already love Laurence and Patricia both. Charlie Jane has done a fantastic job of making me care quickly about these characters.


message 2: by Rick (new) - added it

Rick | 2783 comments Where are you in the book? (I'm finishing up so don't want to comment on things you might not have read)


Phil | 1137 comments For the first third of the book (view spoiler) the only character I even remotely liked or cared about was Patricia. Laurence didn't really click with me and all the other characters were assholes. I'm almost 2/3 through now and I like them much better although every character seems to be a hipster.


terpkristin | 4135 comments Come on, Tom, you should know to preface the title with "ATBITS: ". :D ;)

I haven't started yet. :P


message 5: by Tom, Supreme Laser (new) - rated it 5 stars

Tom Merritt (tommerritt) | 1151 comments Mod
terpkristin wrote: "Come on, Tom, you should know to preface the title with "ATBITS: ". :D ;)

I haven't started yet. :P"


I'm a newb at starting threads.


terpkristin | 4135 comments Thanks, Tom. :)


Adrian | 38 comments Tom wrote: "I know I'm jumping the gun here since it's not quite March 1 (damn leap day)

But I got started on ATBITS and I already love Laurence and Patricia both. Charlie Jane has done a fantastic job of mak..."


I agree and I really like the characters too. I'm excited to see where they go (I am only about 25% through)


terpkristin | 4135 comments I like the characters quite a bit (I'm about 1/4 through after getting sucked in last night) but I kind of want to see what's next, after they finish this year in school that they're in where I am in the book.


Chris | 15 comments I just started the audiobook (and already halfway through) and am enjoying the characters and writing quite a lot!

Though the audiobook has an excellent narrator (her voice sounds sort of like a wise Ellen DeGeneres), I keep wanting to hear Alec Baldwin's voice (or maybe the old British narrator from Pushing Daisies) because this book has the same feel as a Wes Anderson film. It is whimsical as shit, and I love it.


Julian Arce | 71 comments 69% and they are the most charming characters I've read in a while


message 11: by Anne (new) - rated it 4 stars

Anne Schüßler (anneschuessler) | 830 comments I'm 43% in and wholeheartedly agree. I like Patricia more than Laurence, but I think that considering how the characters are presented this is not a surprise.

It's getting better though and if I didn't have to work I'd be swallowing up this book right now. Great pick!


Adrian | 38 comments Julián wrote: "69% and they are the most charming characters I've read in a while"

At 69% there is some steamy romance!


Misti (spookster5) | 474 comments I'm about a third of the way through almost all of which I read waiting for my mother to get a check up with her cardiologist...wth is up with these wait times these days? Anyhoo, I thought my school years were rough. I got nothing on Laurence and Patricia! Seriously, I can't imagine having to go through school with social media, instagram, and whatever else the kiddies are using these days to humiliate each other.


Leesa (leesalogic) | 639 comments Yeah, Misti, that was some rough reading. Some of it hit home, but at the same time I am really glad I'm not a kid today.


message 15: by Iain (new) - rated it 4 stars

Iain Bertram (iain_bertram) | 1309 comments It is a charming, easy read. I really liked both characters.. Ride thigh the book in four days...


message 16: by Pat (new) - rated it 4 stars

Pat (patthebadger) | 100 comments If I'm honest, I thought Laurence was a bit of a dick - mainly in the way he treated Patricia (but also his friends and colleagues). Sure he had a rough time growing up but came across as a very selfish man.


Joanna Chaplin | 1175 comments Misti wrote: "Anyhoo, I thought my school years were rough. I got nothing on Laurence and Patricia! Seriously, I can't imagine having to go through school with social media, instagram, and whatever else the kiddies are using these days to humiliate each other."

I'm having serious trouble getting through this section. Like, I literally cried angry tears when one of them got stuck...again, with the blame for something they didn't do. I think I'm going to have to put it down for another, happier day.


message 18: by Isak (new) - rated it 3 stars

Isak Theodorsson | 36 comments Joanna wrote: "Misti wrote: "Anyhoo, I thought my school years were rough. I got nothing on Laurence and Patricia! Seriously, I can't imagine having to go through school with social media, instagram, and whatever..."

I feel the same. I'm about 1/4 in and getting really bummed out, so good engaging writing but I'm hoping for a bit of a breather.


Joseph Fernandez (delijoe) | 1 comments I've got to say that unfortunately the characters were pretty unlikable... almost "The Magicians" level of unlikable. Laurence is SO much like Quentin it isn't funny... sure he had a hard time growing up but it's no excuse IMO. Patricia wasn't that much better. The other witches were right about her aggrandizement.. she let her power go to her head and she became somewhat of an egomaniac.


message 20: by Tom, Supreme Laser (new) - rated it 5 stars

Tom Merritt (tommerritt) | 1151 comments Mod
Joseph wrote: "I've got to say that unfortunately the characters were pretty unlikable... almost "The Magicians" level of unlikable. Laurence is SO much like Quentin it isn't funny... sure he had a hard time grow..."

Makes perfect sense. I LOVED the Magicians and totally understood Quentin.


message 21: by Amy (new) - added it

Amy Hopkins (spellscribe) | 35 comments Maybe that's why I have such conflicted feelings about the book overall. I loved them. LOVED them. To see these aweaome people stuck in situations that made my skin crawl (not just in school but the subcontext of later relationships) wasn't a good feeling.

Then, I like my book happy. Revoltingly so :)


message 22: by Tom, Supreme Laser (new) - rated it 5 stars

Tom Merritt (tommerritt) | 1151 comments Mod
Amy wrote: "Maybe that's why I have such conflicted feelings about the book overall. I loved them. LOVED them. To see these aweaome people stuck in situations that made my skin crawl (not just in school but th..."

Yeah that makes sense. If you like the characters and you like happy situations, you're not going to feel good seeing them go through hell.


Joanna Chaplin | 1175 comments Amy wrote: "Maybe that's why I have such conflicted feelings about the book overall. I loved them. LOVED them. To see these awesome people stuck in situations that made my skin crawl (not just in school but th..."

I had this reaction. But I was also frustrated by the feeling that while P & L had all kinds of talent, they spent a lot of time being stifled. That was frustrating. I just wanted to rescue them and take them to a kinder, gentler world where they could be awesome in peace.


terpkristin | 4135 comments terpkristin wrote: "I like the characters quite a bit (I'm about 1/4 through after getting sucked in last night) but I kind of want to see what's next, after they finish this year in school that they're in where I am ..."

So....pretty much right after this is when I stopped caring. I don't think it's because I don't like unlikeable characters (I did enjoy The Magicians). By the end, I didn't care enough one way or the other to like or dislike them. But the young versions of P&L reminded me of my elementary school and middle school years (which I suspect is true for a lot of "us nerds"). So I liked them when they were kids.


Walter Spence (walterspence) | 707 comments Just six chapters in. Wonderfully weird so far. I completely agree with the comment upstream comparing this novel to a Wes Anderson film.


Patrick (saluk) | 14 comments I couldn't stand the characters in The Magicians, but looove Laurence and Patricia! They are in a way less selfish here (though they sometimes appear so) - they want better lives for themselves but also want the world to be better. They lack freedom - Laurence can't be free to tinker with what he wants to tinker with, first due to being forced to be outdoorsy, and later because he is caught up in an organization - and similar with Patricia. First she is held back from communing with nature and flying with the birds, and then later held back from using her talents to help people.

I really connected with that struggle. You do your part to help, or you try to contribute your best, but don't always see the impact you hope for. And sometimes trying to help can cause more harm than good. These are all interesting ideas that are so well embodied in the main characters.

If I had one complaint, it's that outisde the main characters I connected with basically no one. Even the villains were a bit too broadly drawn to really loathe.


Ruth (tilltab) Ashworth | 1861 comments I loved them, and then I didn't, and then I did again, and then...*shrug*

I liked the way Lawrence dumped Patricia at school, because it seemed quite realistic - I can remember a time when I would have ignored a friend to prevent bullying, and also, he was very conflicted about what he had witnessed, and still refused to abandon her entirely. He was a kid using the crappy judgement kids make.

I adored Patricia for a long time, and when she was referencing Dr Who I thought she was simply amazing. But her many of her actions, particularly towards the end, didn't make much sense to me.

By the end of the book, book characters sort of fizzled out for me, as if they became less solid the further into the book I went.


Kristina | 588 comments Tom wrote: "Joseph wrote: "I've got to say that unfortunately the characters were pretty unlikable... almost "The Magicians" level of unlikable. Laurence is SO much like Quentin it isn't funny... sure he had a..."

I like TV Quentin way better than book Quentin. :P


Matthew (matthewdl) | 341 comments I really enjoyed Patricia and Laurence as well. Their situations seemed to get more fantastical as the story progressed but I felt their reactions and responses always seemed very real to me.


message 30: by Mike (new) - rated it 3 stars

Mike | 43 comments I started out the book not particularly "liking" either of them, and then at the end I was rooting for both of them! I did not think much either way about the writing, until I realized I went from not liking her characters, to really identifying with their struggles individually and together.


Joanna Chaplin | 1175 comments The wrap-up episode reminded me of something. I was rooting hard for them both, and wanted good things to happen to them, and was continually frustrated as their lives just kind of kept being miserable, just different flavors of miserable.

And then the climactic scene happened (view spoiler) And I was so mad. I happened to read this book on a couple of days were I was emotionally vulnerable for other reasons, but I still reacted badly to this book, in general.


message 32: by Mike (new) - rated it 3 stars

Mike | 43 comments Joanna wrote: "The wrap-up episode reminded me of something. I was rooting hard for them both, and wanted good things to happen to them, and was continually frustrated as their lives just kind of kept being miser..."

Isn't this just very realistic though? Any relationship will be affected by outside forces, sometimes that make people move apart. The ability to push through those outside forces and make a relationship work is what is really hard. I felt their pain in this novel in trying to ignore and push aside outside forces to love each other. Unfortunately, as is sometimes true, those outside forces were overpowering. I really felt for them.


Joanna Chaplin | 1175 comments Mike wrote: "Isn't this just very realistic though? "

I don't know about you, but my marriage so far hasn't had to weather (view spoiler) By that point, to me, it seemed like the entire world existed to make them miserable. To the point where I was pushed out of the story. I suppose it's making a point by exaggeration, but still.


message 34: by Mike (last edited Mar 31, 2016 10:37AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Mike | 43 comments Joanna wrote: "Mike wrote: "Isn't this just very realistic though? "

I don't know about you, but my marriage so far hasn't had to weather [spoilers removed] By that point, to me, it seemed like the entire world ..."


For sure. However, (view spoiler)IDK, maybe I am wrong.


Joanna Chaplin | 1175 comments Mike wrote: "Joanna wrote: "Mike wrote: "Isn't this just very realistic though? "

I don't know about you, but my marriage so far hasn't had to weather [spoilers removed] By that point, to me, it seemed like th..."


Yeah, I consider the results of that event close enough, even if I'm technically incorrect. I admit to semantic laziness, there.


back to top