Today's freebie - The War Against the Assholes by Sam Munson
With thanks to? Goodreads.com
Another review of mine is posted at Goodreads and I feel bad that it's another negative one. Still, feedback is why publishers give these proofs away and honesty is the best policy, even if that makes me an asshole.
Here is my Goodreads review:
The War Against the Assholes by Sam Munson
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I received this proof copy thanks to Goodreads.
The blurb on this book states that it is a YA novel with real crossover to an adult readership. I am mostly an adult but did study childrens' literature at University and have a teenage daughter who is an avid reader (and separate Goodreads contributor) and who passes many books my way. This should give me enough to enjoy a good YA novel and to appreciate it for what it is.
This isn't one of those novels. It is far too complex for readership of any age. The writing style is a stream of consciousness that flits from scene to scene with no coherent underlying idea.
Mike Wood is a teenager at a dull school in New York. It's only when he is introduced to a mysterious old book - The Calendar of Sleights - that he is introduce to an underground world of magic, wizardry and war. Mike's magic powers are unlocked and he becomes a soldier in an age long war...a war fought beneath New York City between classes of magical beings. Mike is quite possibly the person who can bring an end to this war.
And yet I found it hard to really care. No explanation is given as to when the war started, why the factions are fighting and what is at stake. What happens if Mike fails? We don't know.
The book obviously has hidden depths and meanings but nobody really wants to work this hard to find them and teens certainly shouldn't have to. The book is trying too hard to be teen rather than appeal to teens. It borders on pretentious and to me it read like a teen going out of their way to be weird for its own sake. The staccato sentence style didn't lose its irritation and wasn't the unique selling point it was probably meant to be. The book fought against me. But then maybe that was by design. As I'm an asshole.
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