Monday, March 11, 2013
DNF Review: The Summer Prince by Alaya Dawn Johnson
Name: The Summer Prince
Author: Alaya Dawn Johnson
Publisher: Arthur A. Levine
Pages: Hardcover, 304 pages
A heart-stopping story of love, death, technology, and art set amid the tropics of a futuristic Brazil.
The lush city of Palmares Tres shimmers with tech and tradition, with screaming gossip casters and practiced politicians. In the midst of this vibrant metropolis, June Costa creates art that’s sure to make her legendary. But her dreams of fame become something more when she meets Enki, the bold new Summer King. The whole city falls in love with him (including June’s best friend, Gil). But June sees more to Enki than amber eyes and a lethal samba. She sees a fellow artist.
Together, June and Enki will stage explosive, dramatic projects that Palmares Tres will never forget. They will add fuel to a growing rebellion against the government’s strict limits on new tech. And June will fall deeply, unfortunately in love with Enki. Because like all Summer Kings before him, Enki is destined to die.
So, I have been questioning whether or not to write this review, because this book was an DNF and I don't like reviewing books that I haven't finished (even though I did get to 75%). All this review is going to be is just me highlighting why I couldn't finish it.
I got this book as a review copy from NetGalley. So, I put it on my kindle, and I got to 75% before I stopped. I couldn't read anymore of it, not because it was awful, but because it was not compatible to my reading preferences.
This book is hard to explain. It doesn't really have a plot. From what I read, it is more of a character based book. This was the first book I read that was like that and I figured out that I don't like character based books. The whole story-line is about how a person can grow, and shatter, and be put back together in a year. It about how the main character changes within a year due to one person. Due to it being a character based book, there wasn't really a plot. I pictured it as a very thin line dragging the story forward so you can see how the characters develop and it just got too slow for me.
The root of all the problems and all the things I like about it comes from the writing style. The author's writing style is so intense and complex, and because of that I couldn't really get a connection with the characters. After a while I did connect with the main character, but the rest of the characters still felt distant.
On the flip side of the writing style, I also felt awed by it. I don't really know how to explain it, but it felt beautiful and raw for the first part of the book, but then it got to be too much. There was no break from it. If that intenseness was just a few paragraphs in a chapter I would been fine have, but it was in every single sentence.
So far I have been talking about things that another reader would like in a book, but the next thing is something I don't think anyone would like. That is that there wasn't a lot of world building in this book. I have observed some other books where the authors just give you the basic information for the world and leave the rest to your imagination and it works for them. I felt that this author was trying to do that, but she didn't give enough of the basic info to accomplish that, and because of that I was so confused with the world.
However, what really broke the book wasn't the fault of the writing style or anything really, it was the fact that for some reason my review copy had no chapters, at all. It would be that a chapter would end and in the same paragraph a new one would start. It would just make me so confused.
Overall, I meant this review to be short, but that didn't go out well. Anyway, if you are the kind of reader who loves intense and complex books that are character based, then you will fall in love with this book. Although you may come across the road block with the no world building, if you are in the story enough I don't think you will care. However, sadly, I am not that kind of reader, and that is why I couldn't finish this book.
Also, don't forget to enter my 100 Followers Giveaway for your chance to win either the Madman's Daughter by Magen Sharperd or Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi
That's my review, I hope this review wasn't insulting in anyway.