Monday, March 8, 2010

41 is a good Young Adult fiction

41. The Ask and the Answer, Patrick Ness (borrow, YA)

If the first book is about Todd and a certain someone running for safety, the second book is about the beginning of a war. The book may be uncomfortable to read. Themes of genocide, slavery, gender which are touched upon in the first book, are examined in more details here. It also asks an important question: Does war make monsters out of men?

We see Todd fumbling with this question in the first book. A certain other character (who happens to be one of the narrators) repeats this question again in The Ask and the Answer. The title of the third book coming out next year, is Monsters of Men. where I suppose the question will finally be answered then.

The first book suffers from too much repetition of running and escaping but the pace in the sequel is excellent with plenty of BOOM. Todd and the other narrator are developed further. Of the recurring characters, Davy Prentiss who is rapidly becoming my favourite character in the trilogy which frankly states a lot for this book. I will leave it at that.

Still, I give the author two thumbs up for the guts to write a difficult subject for the YA genre. One wonders if he should have created more chemistry between Todd and Viola and make Todd less of an idiot though.

33 to 40 are creations of Jim Butcher

The Dresden Files is set in a modern day Chicago where Harry Dresden, a private investigator and wizard, helps the police with supernatural cases. The Dresden Files is probably one of the best series in the modern fantasy genre. Jim Butcher uses a writing style that makes the books flow like an action movie with witty banter and it works really well.

I know I described the first book, Storm Front, as nothing remarkable. Apparently the first book is a fluke in terms of pacing (and mainly set up the background for the series). The subsequent books (especially from Grave Peril onwards) are filled with unexpected twists and great pacing that had me on the edge of my seat. While Harry Dresden's saviour complex may irk some, it is minor annoyance amid the plot and the well developed characters, both male and female.

33. Fool Moon
The pacing can be slow at times. Thankfully the pacing problems does not occur again.

34. Grave Peril
Grave Peril can be summarised as 'Shit hits the fan'. This is also the book that hooked me in. It helps that the vampires are not sparkly and we are introduced to some very important recurring characters.

35. Summer Knight

36. Death Masks

37. Blood Rites

38. Dead Beat

39. Proven Guilty

40. White Night

Too lazy to write anything for the rest but it's just good and generally awesome.