Saturday, September 19

Book Review Alligator

Title: Alligator

Author: Lisa Moore

Pages: EBook 265

Summary: The story moves with the swiftness of a gator in attack mode through the lives of a group of brilliantly rendered characters in contemporary St. John's, Newfoundland - a city whose spiritual location is somewhere in the heart of Flannery O'Connor country. Its denizens jostle each other in uneasy arabesques of desire, greed, lust, and ambition, juxtaposed with a yearning for purity, depth, and redemption. Meet Madeleine, the driven aging filmmaker whose mission is to complete a Bergmanesque magnum opus before she dies; Frank, a young man of innocence and determination whose life is a strange anthology of unpredictable dangers; Valentin, the sociopathic Russian refugee whose predatory tendencies threaten everyone he encounters; and Colleen, at seventeen a hard-edged female Holden Caulfield, drawn inexorably to the places where alligators thrive. In these pages humanity is a bizarre combination of the reptilian and the saintly. Listen to its heartbeat, and be moved - and delighted.

My Rating: 6.5/10

What I liked/disliked about the book: I enjoyed aspects of the book and while it was well written, in the end it wasn't exactly the book for me. I really enjoyed Frank as a character, and would have loved to have read more about him. He just had something about him that pulled me in. I became very emotionally drawn to him as well and he's the one character that has stuck with me from the book. I really wish there was more on just Frank, as I think it would have been a more enjoyable read. I found I didn't care for the other characters or their stories, some I just disliked completely - and I found most of them didn't have the pull Frank had. While most of their stories were well told in the end, I couldn't get into them.

The disjointed narrative threw me at first, but I did enjoy that aspect of the book, it did help get inside the character's heads and while I didn't like all the characters, it helped understand what they were thinking and helped expand on their story and helped the character develop. Overall, it wasn't a bad read but it wasn't a great read either. I did like aspects of it, but not enough to truly appreciate the book.

Would I recommend it to read: I think some readers would enjoy this book, but others wouldn't like the disjointed narrative. If you enjoy narratives like that, then it I'd recommend it. Although, I did find it wasn't the actual narrative that turned me off - but the author is worth reading, so I'd recommend her other books before this one.

What to read next: More by the author

Challenges: 100+ Challenge, 2015 Category Challenge, 9th Annual Canadian Book Challenge, EBook Challenge, Mount TBR Challenge

Book Review: MaddAddam

Title: MaddAddam

Author: Margaret Atwood

Pages: 390

Summary: A man-made plague has swept the earth, but a small group survives, along with the green-eyed Crakers – a gentle species bio-engineered to replace humans. Toby, onetime member of the Gods Gardeners and expert in mushrooms and bees, is still in love with street-smart Zeb, who has an interesting past. The Crakers’ reluctant prophet, Snowman-the-Jimmy, is hallucinating; Amanda is in shock from a Painballer attack; and Ivory Bill yearns for the provocative Swift Fox, who is flirting with Zeb. Meanwhile, giant Pigoons and malevolent Painballers threaten to attack.

My Rating: 9/10

What I liked/disliked about the book: This was a fantastic read, and excellent conclusion to the trilogy, one of my favourites of the year, this book (the whole trilogy in fact), are well worth reading.

Reading this one after re-reading Year of the Flood, was a good idea, as it helped keep all the details fresh for me. The books have a lot of information in them, and a lot of sub-plot points and this one in particular had a lot of information that was pulled from bits and pieces from the other books in the series. There was a lot that was revealed which helped connect a lot of the little pieces of the story dropped throughout the series that helped answer a lot of questions.

Some of the revelations were surprising, others I began to guess at as things were revealed, and some events had me analyzing long after I finished the book. One little bit in particular has me wondering - mainly about Adam's true intentions with certain decisions he made. Which was why I enjoyed this book as much as I did, while I found it didn't have that same pull as the first book, there was so much revealed in it that had me eagerly reading for more.

Initially the Crakers bothered me, but I eventually enjoyed how the author wrote in their curiosity and Toby's view when she was interacting them, the author showed her frustration wonderfully - and there were many parts I found entertaining. The characters are what made this book, while some characters were less likeable and some I didn't like at all, there were a few who I didn't want to give up. Jimmy/Snowman was one of them. Toby was also a character who I wasn't ready to let go at the end of the story, and many of the characters are the type to stick with you, once you finished the book.

I enjoyed the ending, I know a lot of readers will likely be dissatisfied with the ending, but I think it was very fitting for the book and trilogy - it fit in the overall feel to the story.

Overall, fantastic read, well worth reading this one.

Would I recommend it to read: Yes I would. I think some readers will prefer the first two in the series, but this is an excellent conclusion and is well worth reading.

What to read next: Swarm by Lauren Carter, The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood, and her Positron ebook series

Challenges: 100+ Challenge, 2015 Category Challenge, 9th Annual Canadian Book Challenge, Finish That Series Challenge, Mount TBR Challenge