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WIB: Feb 16-22

September 7, 2014

I’m going to call Julianna Baggott’s Pure the biggest let-down of the year.  I don’t care what else I read, nothing will be this much of a disappointment.  After truly enjoying the first two books–the story of a society where people inside the dome live perfect little lives, and people outside the dome are living in the world’s most horrifying apocalypse (seriously, bomb that attaches things to other things is worse than zombies)–this book made me want to scream.  I’m surprised I even finished it.  The writing is terrible.  Was it always this terrible?  The characters thinks the same thing so many times in every scene they’re in for the first third of the book.  It’s so repetitive I was pretty sure I was reading a first draft.  And then there was something else too; I want to say question marks.  There are SO MANY questions marks in the third-person narration.  It was as if the author wasn’t even sure what she was doing.  I also want to say there’s either too many times where you’re told sort of what happens and then it jumps backward, or–it’s all very fuzzy by now, but at the time I was enraged.

Also, the ending was bad.

Seriously, that book annoyed me on too many levels.  It took days and days for me to read in a series where the other books had been devoured in a day or two.

Next, I read The Phantom Tollbooth, which everyone forever had wanted me to read, especially my kid and/or husband, so I did, and it was really good.  I would’ve liked it better when I was a kid, though.  I felt that it was easy to see why it was as good as an adult, but that’s not the same as truly enjoying it, you know?

Finally, I read Dreams of the Golden Age, a sequel or companion or whatever you want to call it to Carrie Vaughn’s After the Golden Age.  Vaughn hits her stride here and Dreams is a much better book in terms of pacing and characterization.  The story follows the daughter of the first book’s lead, and we’re not just following a good story, we’re also seeing the former lead relegated to Mom, and Control Freak, and that was fascinating without taking away from Anna’s narrative.  Is the book more teen-friendly, YA-like?  Sure.  But it flows so much better than After, and I really enjoyed it.

Next up: I want to like Kate DiCamillo, but I never do.

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