Monday, July 18, 2016

Recently Read: All the Birds in the Sky

Author: Charlie Jane Anders
Genre: Science Fiction/Magical Realism
Publication Date: 2016
Page Count: 316
Rating: 3/5

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Patricia is a witch. Laurence is a science genius. They both are outcasts. Patricia and Laurence find each other and lose each other over their journeys of magic and science and change the world. This novel is genre-defying and thought provoking.

This novel was really hard for me to rate because I had such a strange reaction to the end. I finished this novel, which deals with the possible end of the world, the same day that the military coup in Turkey happened and felt really shaken. I think the timing of me reading this one really affected my thoughts about it. I thought the ending was good, it was pretty emotional on its own, but it was not without light and hope. I just felt so weird reading about the possible end of the world when I read about awful world-altering events everyday. Seeing such a clear reflection of violence and fear in the fiction I was reading and the real life news I was reading was an odd experience. Now, I know that we did not face a possible end of the world, but some days it doesn't feel too far off from it. And for those directly affected by that specific event, it could feel much more like the actual end of the world.

Anyways, that's enough of a glimpse of what my head-space is like at the moment. On to the book... 

Besides all that, I really liked the way that this novel played with the idea of magic vs. science and how they help and hinder each other. I really liked the characters and found the magical realism elements to be really well done and interesting. One word of caution: if you read this book, you must accept that you will be confused at some points. The story is not quite linear and some concepts that exist in this world and not in ours, must just be accepted as they are with no real explanation. I was never too confused and never felt like giving up because of it, but I did have to accept that I would not understand everything as it was presented to me and had to be patient in order to understand. 

I loved how the science fiction and magical realism elements blended together seamlessly in this novel and thought Anders did a great job of building a beautiful and fragile world that was all too real. I would definitely recommend checking this one out, especially if you are looking for something unique and out of the ordinary. There is so much depth and humanity in this small book, I just wish there was a bit more of the world. Some concepts could have been further explained or explored, but I also enjoyed figuring out the concepts on my own. 

If you have read this one, I would love to hear your thoughts on it!

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