Friday, February 15, 2008

Quick Surrender

Sometimes I put something on my list because I wander by it in the bookstore and it's got a pretty cover, and maybe a catchy title. Then I read the back and it has the word "Amish" or maybe "Mormon." I have other trigger words, a lot of which come and go; "nun" has been around forever, and "witch" is often worth a second look, but there was a period of time where "transgender" would do it for me, and I understand that one of my favorite genres is actually called "steam punk."

Cage of Stars, by Jacqueline Mitchard, had "Mormon" and "murder," so I scribbled it down, and then saw it at the library and snagged it. And I started reading it last night, go about 40 pages in.

Yesterday morning, I read Stacey's Ex-Best Friend, Babysitter's Club #51 (this is not a digression; wait for it). It took me a total of about an hour to read, and most of that while I held the book in one hand and unloaded the dishwasher with the other. The narrator is 13, and the target readership is probably 11. And the writing style turned out to be very similar to Cage of Stars.

I've never read Mitchard before, so I don't know if it's her. And it's a little hard to tell how old the narrator is when she's telling the story; the events she's relating now take place when she was 12, but the main part of the story happened when she was 16, and she talks about being in a place "now" where she's happy, which means she's not 16 anymore. Which pretty much must mean she's some kind of an adult, whether 18 or 40. So there's really no reason for these long, repetitive paragraphs of rather dull description, these run-on sentences, these parenthetical "conversational" asides (when something's clever, she writes "Get it?").

So, I'm surrendering this book, with a light heart, to turn my attention to something that I'm enjoying more, or at least more invested in.

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