This week and last I plowed through books faster than I'll ever be able to write them up, so here's the run down in a series of mini reviews:
Time of My Life by Allison Winn Scotch. The story of a woman who goes back in time, to a period of her life when she was with the boyfriend who preceded the man she married and had a child with. An intriguing idea and a pleasant enough read, but there were questions in my mind that weren't addressed. I felt the protagonist was a little too quick to accept her odd situation, to reject her husband in favor of the boyfriend, to do what she thought would make life better for herself and others without struggling quite enough with the issue of impacting the future.
Escape from Special, by Miss Lasko-Gross. I read this after reading Marie's review in The Boston Bibliophile. It's a graphic novel (more like a series of anecdotes) about the childhood and adolescence of a girl who doesn't fit in academically or socially. I had a hard time following this one. It covers ten years or so and I often felt unsure about how old she was supposed to be, which was distracting. I would have liked more of a story thread tying each of the segments together. I finished it and set it aside, ready for my next book.
The Gargoyle, by Andrew Davidson. Rebecca at The Book Lady's Blog said this was one of the top five books she's read over the past few years. Me, I liked it fine. What I liked best was the way Davidson gets the reader rooting for a fairly despicable character. What I liked least was the interweaving of chapters from a different point of view, with stories from the past. It all came together in an interesting way in the end, and I know that others loved the very digressions I was impatient with. I stuck with them because I could see the light at the end of the tunnel and wanted to see the protagonist make it through. I'm glad I did.
Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary Pearson. I read this for my Mock Printz Awards project. Jenna Fox wakes from a coma, having lost most of her memory, and begins to solve the mystery of who she is and why she has no friends and why things are kind of weird with her parents and grandma. Jenna's narrative voice is very stiff, which is in keeping with her situation but made her a little hard to relate to. There were some things which were supposed to be surprises, I think, but which I saw coming several chapters ahead of time. And the ending just annoyed me. Somebody does something completely out of character in order for Pearson to have the clever wrap-up ending she wanted. I thought this book was just okay, but Becky's Book Reviews loved it.
Madapple, by Christina Meldrum, was another one for the Mock Printz Awards. I say "was," because I put it down on page 282 (out of 404). Maw Books Blog liked this one a lot and it was funny to read her review because she praises the cover, which I hate. It's so desolate, and that's how the whole book (282 pages of it, that is) is. The protagonist is almost completely isolated as the book begins and before she gets the opportunity to branch out, the author comes in with chapters from a trial in the future which tell us that, no, that'll all go wrong, too. I found the whole situation depressing, and I didn't understand the protagonist well enough to want to see her through it. It's a well-written book, but no book can be for every reader and this one just wasn't for me.
Coming up this week, a review of a book I liked! Maybe even more than one!
If you've reviewed any of the above books I'd be glad to link to your review. Just give me a heads up in the comments.