Pop Culture Princess

Pop Culture Princess
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Thursday, June 08, 2017

My Sci-Fi Summer reading concludes in a slow simmer

As of yesterday, the Seasons of Reading Sci-Fi Summer readathon has officially ended and I find myself coming up a bit short in terms of my reading goals.

Usually, I go with two out of three books read but this time, I only completed one and am halfway through another. Part of the reason for that was my being distracted by a volume of Stephen King short stories(which was a library book due back this week) but I can't blame it all on King.

Things just got busier than I expected and instead of focusing on what I didn't finish, I'll highlight the fun that I did have, starting with completing Sarah J. Maas' A Court of Thorns and Roses. The story has a Beauty and the Beast theme yet it's not completely dominated by that fictional framework.

Our leading lady is Feyre, whose family has fallen into poverty upon the loss of her father's import business and it falls to her to provide for them all, mainly by taking up a bow and arrow to hunt for food.

One day, she winds up killing a wolf in order to claim a deer, selling the pelts of both at the local marketplace. Not too long after, a monster shows up at the family doorstep, announcing that Feyre has killed a fairy,violating the Treaty between humans and the Fae, and must pay for that crime with her life.

As it turns out, her death is not necessary; Feyre is given the choice of dying on the spot or living in exile upon the lands of the High Lord of Spring,Tamlin. She chooses to go with the messenger, who turns out to be Tamlin, in order to protect her father and two sisters, hoping all the while that there is a way to return to them.

 During her stay, Feyre learns more about the Fae, making a few unlikely friends and terrifying enemies, not to mention that Tamlin,whose face is trapped behind a mask due to a "blight" affecting all of the isolated fairy courts, is not as cold and arrogant as he seems.

 She winds up falling in love with him but not willing to openly profess it at first. When she is ready to do so, a whole host of other problems,many of which involve a wicked queen, arrive to make that issue a small one at best.

I've heard many a book blogger talk about how captivating the writing of Sarah J Maas is and they were so very right indeed. Her story telling does weave a page turning spell and you truly feel enchanted by Feyre's hero journey. She's a solid female lead who is willing to walk through fire,so to speak, to protect those she loves,a true warrior maiden to the core whose adventures I intend to follow:

Meanwhile, I am halfway through Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood, a futuristic tale that connects all too well to modern life.

 Granted, this first novel in a trilogy came out in 2003 but it's predictions of massive riots caused by massive impoverishment, twisted online shows, human trafficking and scientific advancement gone out of control are a lot like today's headlines.

The main focus of the plot is Jimmy,aka Snowman, the lone human survivor in an overheated world overrun with mutant animals and a race of humaniod beings created by his best friend Glenn, best known as Crake.

 In between bouts of searching for food and dealing with the Children of Crake,whom he was left to be the protector of, Snowman relives his memories of his old life,seeking some meaning from it all. At this point, the story is compelling and heartbreaking,especially when their mutual love interest Oryx recounts her sad childhood.

 It's too soon for me to say,perhaps, but I think that the true crux of this novel is the bond between Jimmy and Crake, a friendship that didn't have the right checks and balances in it to stop the worst from happening, not only to them but the greater world at hand:

 I am happy to have fully read at least one Sarah J. Maas(and yes, I do have the second book in the series on my TBR) and will keep on with the Atwood. I didn't make it to The Country of Ice Cream Star but there's plenty of time this summer to head in that direction at some point.

Much thanks to Michelle S. Miller for hosting these great readathons and I'm looking forward to the High Summer one later this season. Still wish that I had done a little better but this really isn't meant to be a competition here. Maybe next time, it will help if I include one of my library loans into my readathon plans.

For now, it's good to keep in mind that when it comes to reading, it should be about the journey and not the destination. Not to mention that a good book doesn't require anyone to cat fight over it, just to share and enjoy:

1 comment:

Michelle Miller said...

I can't wait to read A Court of Thorn and Roses. I'm glad to hear that it's so good. Sometimes I wonder about the hype. I have had Oryx and Crake in my home library for years. I need to read it, but will probably wait since I've already read two Atwood's this year (Hag-Seed and Handmaid's Tale).

Thanks for joining in again. I'm glad you enjoyed it. Don't worry so much about how much you read. It's what you read that counts.

Onward to High Summer!