5.16.2012

Whatever Wednesday: Currently (and About to Be) Reading!

Another post brought to you courtesy of Alz and Krispy not actually having a blog planned and then suddenly going to see the Avengers again Tuesday night.  Here's what Krispy and I have been/will be tackling in wide wonderful world of YA!

Krispy started Kill Me Softly by Sarah Cross this week.  Her initial impression was AMAZING FAIRYTALE-ESQUE PROLOGUE immediately followed by kind of weird pacing in the next several chapters.  She told me though that she liked the general premise of bits of fairytales all coalescing in a contemporary setting, which is promising.  I performed my traditional first-few-chapters-perusal and was unimpressed albeit mildly interested.  Depending on Krispy's opinion of whether or not it is read-worthy (and whether or not she thinks I'll hate it), I may just grill her for the story as she reads and let her tell me everything.  Her versions are usually way more entertaining than the source material.



She also picked up Shadows on the Moon by ZoĆ« Marriott, a Japanese-flavored story about a girl who can weave shadows and whose father is accused of treason and her new stepfather sounds evil and she's going to destroy him no matter what and heyyy I like the sound of this story. I am wholly intrigued and may steal this book from Krispy before she has a chance to read it. 
(Krispy is also still reading A Million Suns by Beth Revis.  Peeps, I'm counting on you all to help me bully her into finishing it so I can gripe without worry for spoilers.  Though the fact that it's a library book and due soon will hopefully force her into finally finishing faster anyway.)



On my end of the YA spectrum is Pure by Julianna Baggott.  The premise is standard post-apocalyptic dystopian: people on the outside were scarred and mutated by bombs, while there's a Dome where others took refuge and are safely unmutated.  Despite the glut of dystopians on the market, this one is visceral and interesting so far despite some of the gratuitous creepy weirdness (for example, the Detonations were bombs of some kind that caused molecular disruption and caused flesh to fuse with whatever was nearest, so the girl's grandfather has a little mechanical fan stuck in his throat while the girl has...a creepy blinking-eyes doll-head instead of a hand).  I've got hopes for this one.



I'm also slowly getting through Patricia C. Wrede's Thirteenth Child, which is basically alternate history of the American frontier--and I mean really alternate since it's pioneers and dust and school and steam dragons and mammoths, and our protagonist is the thirteenth child and therefore destined to be unlucky and go evil and destroy the world, or so her jerkface of an uncle constantly tells her.  I loved the Enchanted Forest Chronicles but I have to say that Thirteenth Child is kind of slow. Not bad, but definitely and oddly more slice-of-life-on-the-magical-American-frontier than anything plot- or even character-driven.  I'm halfway through and not really sure where it's going.



Lastly, I'm even more slowly getting through Waters Luminous and Deep, a beautifully-titled book by Meredith Ann Pierce that is full of short stories.  The two-page prologue-y vignette was charming and beautiful, and was what enticed me to pick this up.  Unfortunately, the rest of the stories so far are are both lengthy and boring because they are essentially fairytales that drag on and on for pages and pages, padded out to--hey, why does this sound so familiar?

BLAST FROM THE PAST: Review of The Darkangel by Meredith Ann Pierce!
Imagine a fairytale padded out (not developed but padded out) to 238 pages and set on a post-colonial terraformed moon. That's what this book is. As a 3-page fairytale minus the science fiction back story, it would've been fine, but as it stands, I only kept reading The Darkangel because the world history was interesting.
Ah, there we go.  At least I can say this for Meredith Ann Pierce: her style is consistent.  Her short stories are along exactly the same lines as her first novel.  It's unfortunate that her stories always end up way too long without the necessary character development, themes, or plot to make what is boring become interesting.

Krispy and I are also eager to read Insurgent by Veronica Roth and Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore.  We've got to clear a few of these books off our literary plates first though!  What are you reading and liking lately?  Or what are you reading and hating, as the case may be?

5 comments:

Connie Keller said...

Most of the books you've mentioned, I haven't read. But I have read Insurgent. And really enjoyed it. My only concern is the ending--and not so much the ending itself as where-is-the-next-book-heading because it feels like it might be heading toward a resolution like something I've read before. (Sorry that's so vague, but no spoilers.) On the other hand, I trust Ms. Roth, so I can't wait to see how she envisions the next book.

linda said...

Ooh, Shadows on the Moon sounds fascinating. Can't wait to hear what you think!

Krispy, PLEASE read A Million Suns ASAP so Alz can post her review so I don't have to read the book! :P

I LOVE the Enchanted Forest Chronicles, but from your description Thirteenth Child doesn't really sound like my thing. I tend not to be a fan of slow-moving books.

Also, I just went to the library today! Yay! Currently reading Heist Society by Ally Carter. :)

Angela Brown said...

I just finished The Mayfair Moon. I'll be mentioning it on my blogso not gonna go all "reviwer-y" on you guys now. I'll let Me, Myself and I handle that.

I'm about to start Half-blood so I'm hoping it will be okay.

Alz, can't WAIT to read what you thought of these various stories :-)

Emy Shin said...

I had PURE in my last batch of library books, but had to return it before getting around to reading. I'm curious to hear your thoughts on it -- maybe I'll give it another try.

I've been reading a lot of adult romance novels lately. It's a good break from YA. :)

The Golden Eagle said...

I have Shadows on the Moon out from the library right now--looking forward to reading that one.

Currently reading Starship Troopers by Robert Heinlein. It's interesting. I'm not sure I really like it, but it's not bad.