Collaborative feature with Alexa since Nov 2013. We read ARCs together and post our reviews on the same date.
|A Darkly Beating Heart by Lindsay Smith|
pub 10/25/16 by Roaring Brook Press
YA - Fantasy / Time Travel
Received ARC from pub
Characters • I couldn’t connect to a single character. Whether it was Reiko herself or her family and “friends” in Japan, there wasn’t enough time spent developing the characters enough to feel like real people. Reiko is just all anger and while we find out the causes for it, they’re told in flashbacks that felt like after thoughts. Then her immediate family played an important role in her current circumstances but they’re not in the book at all, which I thought was odd. Even her extended family. The one cousin who was a part of her life was a superficial caricature and an awful person. Reiko did have a sort-of guy friend that I liked but he wasn’t in the book much. Plus even when Reiko was Miyu, we never really get to know her either. Basically — not enough character development.
Writing • This is the third Lindsay Smith book that’s fell short for me (I DNFed her previous book). I think she has very interesting stories to tell and I like how diverse her characters and settings are. I really do! But there just always seems to be something missing in the writing to truly hook me.
Overall feelings • It was okay. Again, I appreciate the diversity in this story and I think the overall concept was interesting but I wasn’t a fan of the execution.
What's your favorite anime? • Fushigi Yuugi. I loved that anime when I first watched it in high school but two years ago, Alexa and I decided to re-watch it and I fell even more in love with it as an adult. I guess some of the details had faded away (plus I don't think I ever finished it). But as a adult, I saw how mature the story was and how wonderful all the characters are (Tamahome and Miaka!). It's definitely my fave.