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Tuesday, August 12, 2014

What I'm Reading: Vol. 5

While we were driving around to Mt. Rainier and whenever there was a quiet moment, my cousin Nick buried his head in The Maze Runner. I'd heard about the series from students last year and when Nick finished it before his family left, I took him up on his offer to let me borrow it. I can't remember the last time I did this, but I read the entire book in a day. All day Friday I just sat on the deck and read. 

I liked the book, but there were definitely things about it that started to get annoying. I understand that it's a young adult book, but the 'futuristic slang' substitutes for swear words were just plain silly. Klunkhead and shuckface? Right... For the most part, I could ignore it but every now and then the slang would make me laugh out loud -- a bit distracting during the more tense plot points. 

What I really liked about the book was that it actually revolved around how the dystopia came to be. You are right there with the characters figuring out how they got into their current state and there's no "oh-it-all-happened-hundreds-of-years-ago-during-the-war-and-now-the-government-protects-us-and-this-is-just-how-it-is-now-so-let's-overthrow-this-thing-with-a-rebellion-that's-been-underground-this-entire-time-and-now-that-I'm-here-"klunk"-is-about-to-go-down." You find out what happened. At least, most of the way. I'm sure if I kept reading the rest of the series, I would know more of the details. 

The night before I started reading, we watched Divergent, which I've also never read but knew the gist from what students said and what I saw in the trailer. The story did have some of the elements of dystopian fiction that I don't care for (see hyphenated blurb above), but I liked it anyway. I did end up mildly depressed/motivated when I found out that the author is younger than me. When did this happen? I've accepted that I'm older than college football players, Jennifer Lawrence, and Buddy Holly before he died, but a published, successful author of fiction? This puts me in a weird, green-eyed-monster place and I don't like it. Time to write a novel, NaNoWriMo style.

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