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The Ninja Reader

High-brow or downright pretentious, good PNR or sparkly vampires, I don't care about the premise so long as it entertains me.

Currently reading

Bullying: The Social Destruction of Self
Laura Martocci
Wings - Aprilynne Pike *Kate limps in the kitchen. Roommate looks up.*Roommate: What happened to you?Kate: Fell through too many plotholes.You know, at least in one aspect, the caption doesn't lie: You do get a different viewpoint on faeries (fairies?). As for the magic, intrigue, romance and danger, I didn't get much on that, and the extraordinary bit kind of slipped me as well.Good things first - the novel is short and reads easy. You're not given too much time to groan and despair over the things you hate. I admit, I didn't try to delve way too deep into the book, mostly because I've already read five other books in this genre and I really, really don't need to antagonize over it. Or agonize. Oh, wait...So Laurel is your ordinary fifteen-year-old girl whose hippy parents move into a new town (oops, there goes the first drink). She has been previously homeschooled, but now has to attend public school and meets science nerd/Baywatch castoff David in biology class (oops, there goes the second). After their romancing stage (three chapters long) ends, Laurel wakes up one day with a swell on her back. Within a few days, the thing grows to the size of a softball and then bursts into a huge flower. Laurel immediately goes to David for help (because that's what you do, go to the guy you know for a total of two weeks) and after a lot of experimentation it turns out that Laurel is actually a plant.Wait, what? Long story short: Laurel is a faerie who's been sent to the human realm with a special mission. Along the way comes a hot faerie man called Tamani who fills the roles of mentor/second love interest/fierce warrior (David, bless him, isn't much good in that department). Plot kicks in about two thirds into the book, and, you guessed it, our heroes need to save the world (OF COURSE!).I'm not sure what to say here. On one hand, the whole concept is original (barely), but on the other, it wasn't very entertaining. Again, this short book could have been great, if only the author elaborated on some concepts more, put the plot in sooner, and, oh yeah, given us better characters. Seriously, Laurel is Bella Swan with blond hair and anorexic eating habits, David is a pushover and Tamani acts like a total prick in spite of his accredited maturity (keeping track of those drinks? I'm not).The abovementioned plot holes really are a problem. Let's take Laurel's parents for example - they don't believe in doctors? Fine. They support the fact that their daughter is a vegan? Admirable. They completely disregard the fact that she considers half a peach to be a sinful indulgence? Her mother isn't even slightly worried that Laurel hasn't had her period yet? Not cool.Also, at the early stages of the book, when Laurel still doesn't know what the blossom on her back is, she tells David that she didn't tell her parents because she didn't want to be turned into a medical freak. Not to nip-pick here, but if her mother shrugs off textbook anorexia symptoms, I doubt that the flower would be that much of a problem, especially if Laurel made her attitude known. Besides, it's established that Laurel loves her mother and that they're close (thank God, one book where the parents are normal), why wouldn't Laurel trust her if she trusts some guy she barely knows with a huge secret?Not to mention I find it extremely amusing that while Laurel's reproductive system is thoroughly explained, nobody mentiones the less pleasant and much more obvious changes in her physiology. She has no blood, right? Well, if that's the case, she must not have kidneys either, or a bladder for that matter. How did her parents miss that ? Seriously people, it's ninth grade biology (tee-hee).I really, really don't get why these books (not just Wings, but the rest of the Twilight kin) are so popular. Do people find them that wonderful? I mean, the entertainment factor is there, sure, but what about meaning? Not everything should ponder the purpose of life, but I don't think it's that far-fetched to say that stories to reflect the world around us. I'm just trying to imagine pre-pubescent girls reading this stuff and thinking they'll go into high school and immediately be approached by at least two guys and one of them will be the ONE. Sorry, kids, some of us will have to wait a little longer for that. I'm not suggesting that they would think a vampire would approach them, nor do I think it's impossible to meet the love of your life while in high school, but nevertheless, it's hardly the type of love they describe in YA literature nowadays.Don't believe me? Here's what love equals to in Twilight, Hush, Hush, Shiver, Evermore, Fallen and Wings: stalking, passive/agressive abuse on the part of the male, submission and indecisiveness on the part of the female, sexual harrassment and possessiveness. Those of you who have your better half - is this really all there is to love? I doubt it. From the top of my head, I can probably think of a dozen books more worth your time than these six.I know this may appear a little too much, but think about it - the authors don't choose which books become famous (oh, how much easier would that be), the fans do. I know there are accessible, easy to read books out there with much better messages than Wings or Twilight or Fallen, but the general public doesn't want to read "To Kill a Mockingbird" or "Unwind" or 'Let The Right One In", do they? No, they want and abusive relationship disguised as paranormal romance. Sorry folks, not me. Not anymore.