Friday, May 22, 2009

Bones of Faerie

I first heard of this book during the Read-A-Thon. I can't remember who read it, but I remember that they liked it. I then happened to stumble upon this book group and y'all were reading it. So I jumped in.

Well, I hate to say it, because I hate it when books disappoint me, but this book just didn't do it for me. I didn't hate it with a passion, because I did finish it. But, I had some real problems with it.

In the wake of fantasy YA and middle grade books like Harry Potter, Percy Jackson, and Fablehaven (among so many others) books in this genre really have to step up their game. They need to have everything that makes an adult novel great. They can't just be "simplistic" because they are for younger people. And, essentially, that's how this book came off for me. Nothing seemed developed enough, not the language, the backstory, the plot, the characters, or the relationships.

I spent most of the book in a state of confusion. (Michelle seemed to share some my general confusion.) Why was there a war between Faerie and our world? When was this war? Are there still faeries? What's the deal with the mother? What's the deal with the abusive father? What really happened with Cam? How do people get powers--is it from birth or not? Why is Matthew randomly a werewolf? (I didn't realize werewolves were faeries. So, are there vampires too?) What is the scope of the Faerie world and our world? Why are the plants so mean? Who are these people in the other town? (I can't keep them straight or how they relate to each other.) Why does one of them stare so much? Why does Liza have such a strong power? Why doesn't the author develop any backstory when she plops us into the middle of the story? What the hell is going on in general?

These questions were answered in the book, but the answers just weren't satisfactory, for me.

Urgh. So you see my frustration. It started off as such a great idea too. The first chapter really had me wondering. But it just didn't develop into a full-bodied story.

Did I just really miss something here? Am I expecting too much from my YA and setting myself up for disapointment?


Vasilly said...

I had the same questions about the book. Readers never find out what happened for faerie and humans to go to war especially when we are given the details of the aftermath.

Jill said...

I've given up on finishing it because I have so many other books to read, and this isn't compelling enough for me to finish. Your comment about expecting too much from YA is a sentiment I've felt far more often than I'd like this year. The wonderful YA books that take chances, that have well-developed characters and stories have been few and far between, and I hope it's not a trend that continues.

Laza said...

Jill: I get so frustrated with books that don't have well-developed characters, adult or YA. Great characters really make a book for me. I just didn't care about Liza. I wanted to know what happened overall, but I just wasn't connecting with her. There was nothing there to connect with!

Vasilly: Considering we nuked's like, I'd really like to know what they did to deserve that. I mean, they turn plants against us, and we nuke them? hmmmmm. Also, I think it's probably bad that I wanted the backstory more than the actual story I was reading.

I don't know what's gotten into me with this book. The more I think about it the more riled up I get! I'm not usually like this! :)