Dec. 1st, 2011

terriko: I am a serious academic (Twlight Sparkle looking confused) (Serious Academic)
Obviously, I haven't really kept up with book reviews since my move/thesis/conference/breakin/unexpected internet fame/etc., but rest assured that I've still been reading! Anyhow, here's reviews of a couple of books I got via LibraryThing's early reviewers program:

Book cover for Dragons of the Watch: A Novel by Donita K. Paul
Dragons of the Watch: A Novel by Donita K. Paul
As a fantasy, this succeeds brilliantly. Watching how Ellie (and her goat, Tak) react to the fantastical world in which they find themselves is incredibly fun. The story of adventure and compassion even in the face of those who seem at first to be enemies is surprising and adorable.

As an allegory, however, I'm less certain. There's a clever little "play within the play" moment where we are reminded that fantastical stories can serve as ways to teach lessons... but while some of the parts of the story that revolve around the God, Wulder, fit beautifully into the tale of self-discovery, I have to admit that by the end of the story I felt like some of the references were a bit bolted-on.

I still definitely recommend the book and fully enjoyed it despite this, but beware that you may feel like the religious aspect becomes a bit heavy-handed towards the end.

Book cover for Skye Object 3270a by Linda Nagata
Skye Object 3270a by Linda Nagata
As one of the other reviewers said, this is reminiscent of great teen science fiction such as Monica Hughes' books. Think Devil on My Back or The Keeper of the Isis Light. I loved those books: a world that is both believable and alien, teenagers who are finding their place in the world, and an adventure as they stretch to learn more. I found myself caught up in the mysteries, and wanting more when it finished. I'm looking forwards to reading Linda Nagata's other books!


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