Saturday, January 22, 2011

2011 book 26

Jo Walton's Among Others
In many ways, this is a very weird book. If I tried to describe it to you, you would think you would know just what it was like. Here: it's a book about a girl fleeing a family tragedy where her twin sister died, and she gets sent to a boarding school where she doesn't fit in at all, and oh yeah, there are fairies and magic. Doesn't that sound like a good book, and you can totally imagine it? But it's not really at all what you would expect it to be, in a really awesome away. For one thing, the protagonist, Mori, is really really into sci-fi books, and since this book is her journal, we get a lot of her thoughts about various books (some of which I've never heard of, but I'm not into sci-fi). For another thing, it's not a YA book, so it successfully evades the cliches of the current YA fantasy genre. And the magic, while important, is kind of like, just there, kind of a sidebar to the main plot. This is really more a book about books--libraries and librarians and book clubs are all key--and about coming of age and learning to be an adult. Sort of. There's even some discussion of Judaism! Hm, I can't explain this in any good way, clearly. Here is io9 talking about it at length. A/A-.

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