Word Spelunking

Above - Leah Bobet DNF (no rating)THREE WORDS: Did Not FinishMY REVIEW: To start with, I did not finish reading this book, stopping at about the halfway mark, so this won’t be a full review but simply my reasons for why I chose not to finish the book. And of course my thoughts are based on only the first half of the book.Leah Bobet’s Above certainly has an original and potentially fascinating premise, but unfortunately this alone was not enough to hold my interest. The story focuses on a group of “beasts” (people with abilities or disfigurements) that live in Safe, an underground community. The people of Safe, including Matthew and Ariel, live in fear of Above (the outside world), but they are forced to flee there after an old enemy invades Safe.I was drawn to this book because of its intriguing premise, and I still think the overall idea and concept of the book is really original, however, the way the story was executed failed to hold my attention. I’m usually a big fan of book’s whose language may be a bit different or unusual- lyrical prose, stream of consciousness, different or literal dialects- and I’ve seen these things come across in really awesome ways in books…unfortunately, the language in Above was Too Much for me- too odd, too frustrating, too confusing. I think I fully get what Bobet was trying to achieve with this language and with Matthew (whose point of view the book is told from), but “getting” it and liking it are two different things, right?But that’s not to say that Bobet’s actual writing isn’t good, but cause it really is. There are some quite breathtaking descriptions and tangible emotions created in this book. Bobet is clearly a talented writer.My biggest issue with this book is the slow, uneven pacing and lack of, well plot. The book moves slow and is often boring, and honestly, not much happens. The book is very much about being “in the moment” and very little backstory is provided (at least up to the point I read) and I found this confusing. This lack of any real storyline and backstory made the characters come across flat and uninteresting…not necessarily unlikable, just not compelling.MY FINAL THOUGHTS: By the half-way point of Above I just found myself too uninterested and not invested enough to continue. Did I hate what I read in Above? No. Was this book for me? No. Would I read more of Leah Bobet’s work? Absolutely!**Be sure to check out all the reviews of this book on Goodreads before you decide whether you think this book is for you.**Read more reviews at Word Spelunking

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