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All the Birds in the Sky
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All The Birds In The Sky > ATBITS: Narration

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Melani | 179 comments I'm about half-way through and really enjoying the book except for one thing. And that thing is unfortunately something I'm having a hard time putting my finger on. Something about the narration, or maybe it's the writing style, is bothering me. I'm not entirely sure what it is exactly. Anyone else having similar thoughts? Or maybe help me pinpoint exactly what it is?

I think it may be that there's a weird juxtaposition going on. This is nominally an adult book, but the narration is one I associate more with Middlegrade novels.


Brendan (mistershine) | 930 comments Melani wrote: "I'm about half-way through and really enjoying the book except for one thing. And that thing is unfortunately something I'm having a hard time putting my finger on. Something about the narration, o..."

The style reminded me of A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, where the vocabulary and structure begins very simplistic and ramps up in complexity as the protagonists age. The beginning reads like a children's book, the protagonist's teen years read like a YA novel, and so on. Sounds like a tricky technique to pull off but I like it here.


message 3: by Melani (last edited Mar 03, 2016 08:32AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Melani | 179 comments Brendan wrote: "The style reminded me of A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, where the vocabulary and structure begins very simplistic and ramps up in complexity as the protagonists age. The beginning reads like a children's... "

That might be it? But I'm at the point where they're adults and it's still reading more like a children's novel. Still I will start paying a bit more attention to that progression. Thanks.


Chris Bellevie (cbellevie) | 22 comments I really struggled with the narration, especially as this was my first audio book ever. I found that it worked much better when I turned the playback to 1.5x.


Melani | 179 comments I'm not listening to it, I'm reading it. By narration I mean the way the story is being told as opposed to the voice of a speaking person reading the book.

Though I suppose that the vocal narration of the novel is effected by the written narration somehow.


Rob Secundus (quintessential_defenestration) | 1035 comments I think CJA's narrator is just more whimsical, and more personal/individual than we're really used to in mainstream "adult" fiction. We let our younger narrators have more fun, or engage in more play.


Melani | 179 comments I've finished and the narration never jelled with me. It's a very jagged book. And I could tell that the author was trying very hard to show me how impressive her story was, but I wasn't very impressed. And the narration is a big part of that. I think if I come down to it, I'm just not fond of Anders' writing voice.


Brendan (mistershine) | 930 comments I've also finished the book now, and I thought Anders' narrator was one of the strongest elements of the book. As I mentioned earlier, I enjoyed how the narration matured along with the two protagonists and the adult portion reminded me a little of a 21st century version of Douglas Adams, where the fantastical ridiculousness is contrasted against totally mundane ridiculousness.


Melani | 179 comments Brendan wrote: "I've also finished the book now, and I thought Anders' narrator was one of the strongest elements of the book. As I mentioned earlier, I enjoyed how the narration matured along with the two protago..."

Oh, that might be why it turned me off. I'm not fond of Adams either. I think fantastical ridiculousness is not a style I enjoy. But now that you've put words to it, that's EXACTLY it. So yay! I've identified the issue, even though it still bugs me.


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