April fools! Not. It’s May you all. Have you been sticking to your New Year’s resolutions? Me neither. Thankfully, we’ve been sticking to our April CRC and here are some of the thoughts that we have about the books we read this past month.
What book did you read and did you enjoy it?
Dre: I read Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton and, surprisingly, I did enjoy it.
Dee: I read Forever by Maggie Stiefvater and I didn’t enjoy it as much as I did the first one.
What were some of your favourite things about the book?
Dre: I liked the way Hamilton built the world in this book, I loved the mythology that was included in the premise of the story from the beliefs of the characters to the actual mythological creatures themselves. The Buraqi, wild horse-like beasts that could shape shift into sand, was by far my favourite creature in the story. I also liked how even though Amani, the main character, was of course the centre of the story, Hamilton managed to write about her in the Chosen One trope without making it too cliche.
Dee: First, the theme. I’m a sucker for urban fantasies, and this book fits right in the description. Secondly, the love. Again, a total sucker for this. So there you have it!
What about your least favourites?
Dre: You see, I had a love-hate relationship with this book because even though I liked the story sometimes I felt that the writing was cringeworthy. The first paragraph of the book literally reads: “They said the only folk who belonged in Deadshot after dark were the ones who were up to no good. I wasn’t up to no good. Then again, I wasn’t exactly up to no bad either.” And since this story was told in Amani’s POV, it made her character cringeworthy and even, at some points of the story, kind of annoying.
Dee: Where do I start? Hahahah! Okay it’s not like I have a lot to say against this book. It’s just that it doesn’t quite live up to my expectations, I guess? Well anyway, as I’ve expressed before, I really enjoyed the first one. Shiver, the first instalment, was a particular favourite of mine because it really fulfilled my mushy fluffy needs (did that came out right?). With Forever, there was a lot more problems at stake and so the story was more focused on solving these issues and not really focused on the characters. Totally unsurprising and completely understandable, but I suppose I was just yearning for a nice read before I go to bed. SECONDLY, one other thing that I really dislike are the flashbacks, majorly Sam’s, the lead male character. The book used his flashbacks to slip in new information that would support the character’s situation in the present time. I mean, where were these memories before???
How did the book stand out to you and would you recommend it to anyone?
Dre: I think the main reason why I did enjoy the book is because it restored my faith in Chosen One dystopian tropes. Even though all the typical things we’d find in every other book that falls under this category was present in this book: main character with hidden talents, mysterious boy with issues, rebellion against diabolical government, the flow of the story made me appreciate all of these things even if they weren’t completely unpredictable. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys reading Chosen One dystopian tropes, for obvious reasons, and for those who are starting to lose faith in the trope, so that maybe this story might restore your faith too.
Dee: BROKEN BOYS. SEXY WEREWOLVES. HEADSTRONG FEMALE LEAD. All things aside, Sam was the true bargain for me. Sam’s character, I dare say, is the heart and soul that made The Wolves of Mercy Falls what it is. He isn’t your typical half-smile bearing flashy bad boy who destroys everything in his path. Sam is a thoroughly decent guy whom you don’t worry too much about introducing your parents to. Not only is it a true refreshment for me as a reader, but it is also an admiration for Stiefvater’s writing. Admit it, you don’t come across characters like this nowadays. All in all, I recommend this book to you lot who are looking for an enjoyable read to fill up your downtime.
We already have a May lineup, y’all. So check in on our next post!