Tuesday, April 30, 2013

April DNF

Let's be honest- there is no way that any of us love every book we read, and sometimes we're not going to finish them. I give a lot of books a go, and sometimes I find ones that i can't even power through, which leads to a meter-high did not finish pile every month (it also means I flagrantly overuse the library because I'm afraid of buying a book that I won't finish). I tend to only comment on books that I have finished, for obvious reasons, but I figured I would give a sample of the (aforementioned meter-high) did not finish pile. These are the books that I honestly couldn't finish for more reason that "I didn't have time":

The Vindico (The Vindico, #1)

The Vindico: I typically love books about juvenile and teenage criminal masterminds. I loved H.I.V.E., which has a very similar premise, but I just couldn't get into this one. I got about halfway though before calling it quits. I didn't much care for the characters, and it lacked something that I require in young criminal masterminds: a sense of humour. It didn't have that element of dark humour that I love in young criminal mastermind genera. Like in H.I.V.E., teens were snatched by a criminal organisation to train the next generation of law breakers. However, I saw nothing interesting or brilliant about these characters, and I gave up pretty quickly.

The Suburban StrangeThe Suburban Strange: I didn't get anywhere close to finishing this one- I didn't even get to the main plot points. From the beginning, the character of Celia annoyed me a lot. I found her very difficult to connect to at all and it didn't matter to me in the slightest what happened to her. I gave up about 60 pages in after she thought that two injuries in four days happening to two different girls was strange, while the fact that she was joining some strange group of people who seemed to be trying to be edgy and mysterious, but failed completely  wasn't at all odd. She didn't ask questions. She wasn't curious. All in all, she wasn't my type of character, and I actively disliked most of the others.

Pulse (Pulse, #1)

Pulse: Again, I did't care for the characters, and I didn't feel for the world. I found the premise promising, but it didn't really pan out for me. I promptly forgot the names of a lot of characters while reading, and they seemed shallow to me- not what I go for in a sci-fi/ fantasy (is there a word for the combo thereof? sci-fantasy?- I'm going to use sci-fantasy from now on). If you're going to give me a computer dependent world, give me a computer dependent world, make the hacking a big deal, make it seem spectacular, like hacking is actually something interesting that takes talent, otherwise I won't root for anyone to take down your totalitarian regime- it will seem as though anyone could do it. If you're going to give me a people willing giving up their freedom for convenience  give me someone with a strong opinion otherwise, give me someone to root for, or give me the sense that they will develop an opinion that I can care about. I didn't get to the whole "Pulse" thing, I was done by the time the "mysterious new guy" entered the scene. The whole world felt sort of tedious.

Etiquette & Espionage (Finishing School, #1)Etiquette and Espionage: (note: I have not read the Parasol Protectorate books) This was too many things for me- steampunk and magic and assassins. I sort of went into it hoping that the steampunk aspect would be subtle, and it would have a focus on Victorian girls being trained as assassins. I wasn't expecting the magic bit at all, and that really put me off- along with the fact the steampunk was brutally in my face. I would have liked to see the Victorian assassin training- the Victorian view of women was little better than the Victorian view of furniture  so women would make ideal assassins, spies and detectives (if you like the sound of the last ones, try The Agency by Y.S. Lee), because they could fade into the background. I also wasn't all that fond of the characters- Sophronia was a little bit too much the cliched female lead. I got about 70 pages in before I gave this one up as not for me.

Now. I know people who read this are probably going to have some strong words for me. I would like to hear (well, read them) them, provided you attack the idea, not the person, and are respectful. Thanks.

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