Hi, Hey, Hello!
This is a slightly tangential start to this book review, but I realised a few weeks back while I was trying to figure some stuff about what books were gonna make my little mini reading lists that I only have one book that’s over 700 pages, and that is Donna Tartt’s book. The rest, for the most part, all kind of hover just underneath 400 or so pages which makes the whole thing seem less terrifying a feat to try and achieve.
Proved by the fact that I’ve finished three books since last Monday, two books in full I was just finishing one up before that.
The next book:
Words can’t really do justice to how beautiful this book actually is. The details on the pages of this book are just stunning. The cover is gorgeous and the designs of the maps that are dotted throughout are true pieces of art.
As I’ve mentioned before, I bought this book because when I was in Waterstones it had just won an award for best Children’s Book of 2017 and well I’m a sucker for advertising it would seem. And it also followed me fucking everywhere before I finally relented.
Okay, so this book felt a little bit Rebel of the Sands in some way. I don’t even really know what it was about it that felt like that. Maybe it’s just because it was a fantasy world and it was a female heroine and I was still a little bit fucked up over the trilogy. And I thought that that residual feeling was the reason that I didn’t quite mesh with this book, and I do think it was that in part, but also I just didn’t quite mesh with it.
I don’t even really know what it was about it. It’s well written and I liked Isabella and the story itself was fine. But I just found myself moving through the whole thing and not really giving a shit…
Something about it felt a bit too rushed. I got to the last 30/40 pages and was just like how is this going to resolve itself in that few amount of pages. And it was resolved, but it felt sooo rushed. And then it all came to an end and I was like ‘oh’.
The things that I did like was the slightly mythical, magical element to it. I liked how complicated the friendship between Lupe and Isabella was. They had that kind of relationship that felt full of unconditional love but also felt so teenaged in the way that it moved. But it also felt kind of undeveloped in some way. I dunno, come the end when Lupe died to save Isabella so that she could continue on the journey to save the island, I didn’t care that it had happened. I also didn’t really care about her father and what he had done…I didn’t really feel like the importance of it was really made clear because the second it was said things had moved on already.
That’s the thing that I didn’t really get on with when it came to this book. Things were said and then moved on really quickly and it just felt like it was go, go, go but it didn’t really go anywhere. It was never really explained why the Banished were the Banished, or why the Governor was so totalitarian, Yote seemed to come out of nowhere and then was suddenly super important and the myths didn’t really feel fully fleshed out so they didn’t really mean anything to me. And I could honestly go on.
There a couple of reasons why this might have happened, one I’m not in the target demographic so maybe that affected it? And two, I was kinda tired and so maybe some things just didn’t land with me and went over my head. Or maybe I just didn’t like it.
That seems the most likely.
I don’t think this book is bad, I know that it sounds like I thought that it was, but it wasn’t. It just wasn’t for me and as such I can kind of pick it apart with ease. Like I said, aesthetically this book is stunning and it does have some beautiful images in it, but it just wasn’t for me. I finished the book so confused as to whether I liked it or not and usually if I finish a book like that, it’s more likely that I didn’t.
Parentheses count: 0. See you tomorrow!
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