Saturday, September 22, 2012

The Supernaturalist 
Fellow readers, prepare to consider me an outlaw, for I have allowed an obstacle to block the path of my reading this week. :) Yes, I did have a bit more homework than usual over the last week, however I have nearly finished reading "The Supernaturalist." I hope that you will forgive my failure to finish the novel during the week.

I discovered a few things about "The Supernaturalist" when I did sit down to read it - the first being that I was reading a novel that was composed simply of basic features of the English language. The structures of several paragraphs reminded me of a those within my Social Studies book - topic sentence, explanation, example, tie-back sentence. This structure is helpful and enhancing when used in Social Studies paragraphs, however when used in a fictional novel, the plot tends to melt into pure monotony. 

The pace of the novel changes rapidly and often fails to suit the event being described.. I've found that the author tends to dwell on everyday happenings that have a low level of relevance to the plot, yet when key events occur, he simply rushes through them, making them unclear. 

The novel is written from a third person omniscient which I sometimes think is too insightful. If the fact that the book was written from an omniscient was eliminated, the author could have seized the opportunity to exercise the technique "show-not-tell," which I am certain would have made the novel far more exciting and pleasant to read.

Despite all of this seemingly endless pontificating, however, I have heard several praises for other novels by Eoin Colfer and this has encouraged me to continue reading "The Superaturalist." Who knows what the rest may hold?

Friday, September 14, 2012

The Supernaturalist
I have decided to complete my challenge of reading dystopian novels before I continue to read "The Deep," however I will undoubtedly be carrying on with it as soon as possible. In the meantime, I have just begun an extremely engrossing novel: "The Supernaturalist" by Eoin Colfer. Presenting the somewhat sad future scene of a city that is completely reliant on a single satellite, the first fifty pages of the novel have introduced me to Cosmo Hill, a fourteen-year old boy who, unlike most other residents of Satellite City, has no sponsor. Within satellite city, sponsorship is the only thing that allows one to trace their biological parents, thus the story initiates with Cosmo desperately hoping for an opportunity to escape from the walls of his cruel orphanage.

The problem in the plot is yet to unfold, however I am holding high hopes for an interesting read. The vocabulary involved is advanced yet understandable, although I am prepared for the book's high levels to decline as I have read so many books which follow this pattern. I am trying, however, to avoid holding prejudices which could affect my enjoyment of the novel as I continue to read.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Maddian's Fantasia - Final Post
I concluded my reading experience of "Maddigan's Fantasia" a little while ago for multiple reasons. Perhaps it was just my reading speed, but the pace of the book appeared to decline quite severely. This could just be a representation of an awful patience span, however I did not think I was enjoying the novel. Now, someone with a longer patience span probably would enjoy the book but I didn't really experience much emotion as the plot seemed to be failing to unfold. On the contrary, I was more than satisfied with the book's language quality and with a faster pace in the plot I'm sure the novel would be fantastic. I am going to recommend "Maddigan's Fantasia," as the complaint about pace I have made was formed from my own perception and the story of Garland and her interesting new-found friends in "Maddigan's Fantasia" may be very appealing to some. I think that anyone from the ages ten and up should at least start the novel. Let me know if you like it!
The Deep - Post One
I have now begun reading "The Deep" by Helen Dunmore, the sequel to "Ingo," which I read a few years ago. Upon returning to the series I have had to refresh my memory but now can grasp the book's basic concepts.
The story follows Sapphire, whose dad has recently disappeared at sea. Sapphire is aware of her connection to the water and the land within - Ingo.
In this novel, Sapphire has recently moved house and is struggling to settle in while trying to control her "addiction" to Ingo. I am enjoying the first few pages but have not decided on my opinion of the language quality. Some seems quite well-written, some is a bit different from what I am used to. However, I am enjoying Ingo at the moment and can't wait to read more!
Freax and Rejex
I'm really not too sure if "Dancing Jax" and "Freax and Rejex" are Dystopian fiction, but several features of the text do suggest this. Dancing Jax, the first book in the thrilling trilogy, tells the story of a sinister children's book which has an odd power - it possesses almost anyone who reads it, diverting their minds to a different world where they become a different character.

I have just finished reading "Freax and Rejex" and I am yearning for more of Robin Jarvs' artistic works. "Freax and Rejex" tells the story of those who can resist the book, the "aberrants." Several miserable children are torn from their possessed families and thrown into a kind of concentration camp designed for the torture and exploitation of the aberrants. Told from an Omniscient, the reader is placed in the shoes of the main aberrants and experiences the aberrant camp with the characters.

At first I was a little bored by "Freax and Rejex," but with every turn of the page, grew to like it more. Horrific twists and surprises fill the middle and final pages, keeping the reader glued to the novel. Certain points brought tears to my eyes, others simply made me grimace in shock.

I would recommend "Freax and Rejex" to anyone of the ages of fourteen and up. I did enjoy this novel but stumbled on the occasional "mature" topic. Despite this, "Freax and Rejex" is an amazing sequel to "Dancing Jax" and I can't wait to finish the trilogy with "Fighting Pax" - coming out next year!
Juno of Taris - Review

"Juno of Taris," by the New Zealand author "Fleur Beale," is a poignant piece of Dystopian Fiction which I thoroughly enjoyed reading. Although in the modern world, the adjective "poignant" is commonly associated with sad material filled with long, draining sentences with predictable and typically sentimental meanings, I wish to make it clear that the content of "Juno of Taris" does not fit this stereotype. With messages regarding family, religion and culture, I would recommend this novel to readers of the ages of thirteen and up.

"Juno of Taris" tells the first-person recount of Juno, who lives on Taris - an island with a dome over it, supposedly created hundreds of years before the time of the novel and designed to survive any disaster, anything that may wipe out the civilisation outside the walls of Taris. Juno is descended from a line of Tarians and is constantly questioning the odd rituals which occur. Controversy is always sparked when Juno refuses to shave her head like all the others or does anything that would be considered "improper" on Taris.

Juno's inquisitive nature, though, opens the door to many shocking secrets regarding the island and its history.     Horrible things are exposed and Juno's life is changed eternally.

This impressive novel by Fleur Beale is a fantastic page-tuner which fans of Dystopian Fictions will have extreme difficulty putting down. Followed by two other gripping novels, "Juno of Taris" is definitely a great read.