Friday, April 24, 2015


Specials (Uglies, #3)Specials by Scott Westerfeld

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I liked it much better than I expected to, maybe because I had low expectations. 3.5 stars, I stretched up to 4 stars because I was feeling generous.

Tally and her friends have been turned into Special Specials by Dr. Cable. She sees everything with a sharp clarity however her brain is being further manipulated by the system. Shay-la and her band of Cutters is constantly trying to hunt down the New Smoke and Tally-wa is faced with accepting the reality of her situation.

I admit, I skimmed a lot of this one. There was a lot of action scenes that didn't hold my attention. I got what was going on and then moved on. My biggest issue with this one was the glamorization of harmful practices in a book aimed at impressionable young women. Cutting, underage drinking and early sex was portrayed as not only the norm but as positive things and personally I see this as irresponsible as an author. On the other hand, many reviews I read found the ending a bit disappointing but I didn't. I liked the ending and thought that Tally was stronger for it. I shall say no more to prevent spoilage. I would have liked to have seen more of David, but this was written from Tally's point of view and circumstances being as they were I can see why this wasn't possible. Maybe in the future Westerfield will write the story from David's point of view. That could be interesting.

Overall, its not a bad series but far from perfect however. If you like YA dystopias this might grab your attention.

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Tuesday, April 21, 2015


Pretties (Uglies, #2)Pretties by Scott Westerfeld

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is the second book in the Uglies trilogy (which somehow turns into 4 books instead of three o_0). In any case, I didn't like it as well as the first and ended up dropping my rating to three stars.

I had some issues with this one. I understand that by turning people into pretty-heads that you change their personality into shallow people. But how shallow can a person get? When do these people actually grow up? I know there are mentions of doctors and anthropologists and other types of workers but its never explained how these people go from partying all the time to being a doctor. The world building here is very lacking. There are mentions of other cities but that's all you ever get, just a mention. Nothing about where they are or how things are different or same there. What about school and education? It seems like a lot of destructive behavior is glamorized in this book.

But back to Tally-wa and the rest of her Crim crew. Other than Shay, who she comes to rescue, we are introduced to a whole new set of characters each as shallow as the rest except for Zane. Zane seems to have been the only one that has managed to keep his head throughout the book too bad it looks like he may lose it. Shay also seems to have some mental fight left in her, too bad past betrayal seems to have corrupted her.

Overall, I liked Pretties but not as well as Uglies. I hope that Specials is not as bad as some of the reviews that I've read. Even though it a YA read does not mean that world building isn't important. And this series could use a bit more of it.

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Uglies (Uglies, #1)Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I stretched and gave this read 4 stars. I think its a series with a lot of promise, but looking ahead at reviews of the rest of the series I fear the promise is lacking.

Tally Youngblood is a young woman in a world that is centered on looks. Everyone in her society undergoes a transformation at 16 to change them into someone pretty. Her whole ambition in life is to be pretty and then she meets Shay. Shay tells her about a place where life isn't based on looks and you can be yourself and when Shay runs away Tally is forced into searching for her and when she finds her she learns the truth about her society.

The whole beauty centered world is an interesting concept. The founders of this society believed that if everyone were beautiful then no one would fight. There would be no wars or strife, but we all know that utopias are unattainable and ultimately its all about the control of the masses.

Overall, it was a fun read. I thought Tally started out a shallow character only believing the facts of life she was fed but she grew up a lot after her adventure. There is more to beauty besides what's on the outside after all.

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