Here comes a new crisp voice in fiction - one which I am a big fan of now, and will definitely follow.
From the first glance, If I Had Your Face seems like a collection of separate storylines, but very quickly it's evident at just how tightly woven they are. I loved the pacing, I loved how everything came together - one moment I am reading about all these different women and the next I see them as this tight knit group of misfits that are just trying to make it in this harsh world.
This book surprised me, normally I am quite negative towards cosmetic surgery (unless there's a health reason for it) and superficial things, but this book makes them relevant. They are a part of this story and I gulped it all in two sittings. Horrified, at the reality of it all, but unable to stop.
Frances Cha has a wonderful way of story telling about her, it's engaging and it gives just enough without revealing too much. With every horror she reveals, you know that more are hiding underneath, but also with every happy moment she gives you - you know that there is hope for more to come.
Big thanks to NetGalley and Random House Publishing Group - Ballantine for a digital copy to review. All opinions are my own. If I Had Your Face comes out on April 21, 2020.
Hello, if you're new here, I am the one with unpopular opinions. The one who seems to hate books everybody else enjoys, and love books everybody else hates. That's a big generalization, but kind of true.
Oona out of Order is a grand example of that. I look at all those 4 and 5 stars on Goodreads for this book, and I just can't relate.
Oona out of Order is a good example of why you should leave sci-fi concepts to sc-fi writers. Time jumps in this book are muddy at best, and very much tailored to fit the story, and not the other way around. Want a beautiful mind bend? Read Dark Matter by Blake Crouch, the man knows his craft.
Oona is a very unlivable character, which does not help, she makes horrid decisions and is basically on the mission to sabotage herself throughout the whole book. Was this meant to inspire compassion and pity from the reader? Didn't work on me.
She's also incredibly rich, how convenient, and once again - can't relate. Time travel is easy when you're loaded. Try being an average middle class citizen who can't hold a job because of time travel, now that's something worth reading. Reading about Oona traveling Asia for half a year because she's depressed - well, didn't make me like her any better, let's leave it at that.
The book, while being 320 pages long, does not offer much of substantiality. Everything is trivial, and frankly, boring to read about. I've also had no emotional interest or connection to any of the characters, well maybe Kenzie, but that's it. The ending message feels generic and very much a cliche - enjoy every day, never take anything for granted.
And lastly, New York's late 80's/early 90's party scene - hard drugs, flowing booze, uninhibited decision making - is not something I enjoy reading about. So, me not enjoying this book is very much a case of "not my cup of tea" . It is apparently many other people's cup of tea, so pick your pick.
Big thanks to Flatiron Books for a copy to review. All opinions are my own.
Here goes my second DNF of the year. I read 77 pages of this, and honestly, I should have abandoned this after the first "short story". I say "short stories" because they are not, not really. All of them are snippets - unfinished, unresolved, without a purpose except maybe to shock and disgust.
My main question is this - what is the purpose of these stories and who are they written for?
Because surely, they are not written for women, not for women who are the topic of these stories. Not for the rape survivors, not for the abused, not for the mistreated.
Because there is no comfort in these stories. There's only crudeness and pain, and abuse and rape, rape, rape. And the worst part? These women take it. They think they deserve it, they don't fight, they don't want retribution. These are not Difficult Women, these women are broken, empty, just vessels for the horrors that happen to them.
There is a better way to tell these stories. A way that will not make a surviver relive their worst fears on the paper, a way that honors the survivors, a way that tells the truth without spitting it in your face.
Oh Shorefall, how short have you fallen ( I think I'm so clever). My expectations for this book were higher than high. I kept checking the release date, kept waiting for cover reveal and when I got an ARC for this I literally screamed (happy screams, happy screams).
And now that I have read it - I have very mediocre feelings about it. Because that's what this was - mediocre. Like lukewarm tea, you have to finish because you don't want to waste it.
Ok, that was a bit dramatic, and don't get me wrong Shorefall was not bad, but it wasn't Foundryside good. Foundryside was electric! It was fast paced and exciting, and page turning. Shorefall was, well it just was.
One might say, second book syndrome. But I don't believe in those. Second books are my FAVORITE books (Two Towers, Well of Ascension are some examples). So what happened? Where was the spark? Or, more honestly put, why the absence of a spark?
No spoilers, so when you read Foundryside - you know how it ended. Clef and Sancia were separated. And you know what, their conversations were what makes the book! In Shorefall there's no Clef/Sancia team, there's no banter and you, as a reader, miss it dearly.
There's also the problem of the cast of the book - it is very minuscule. Which can be nice, but for a fantasy of a scale that this should be, it felt lacking. Not to mention that the existing characters I absolutely loved from book 1 were lacking themselves. They didn't feel as multi-demential as they needed to be.
In the end I did enjoy it, and am very still excited for the next book. This one felt like it was setting up for big things. But those things better be big. BIG.