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Shirley Jackson, Francine Prose
No Logo: No Space, No Choice, No Jobs
Naomi Klein
Progress: 158/528 pages
"I want to perform an unnatural act."

- Lenny Bruce

"I get a kick out of being an outsider constantly. It allows me to be creative. I don't like anything in the mainstream and they don't like me."

- Bill Hicks

"I don’t like ass kissers, flag wavers or team players. I like people who buck the system. Individualists. I often warn people: “Somewhere along the way, someone is going to tell you, ‘There is no “I” in team.’ What you should tell them is, ‘Maybe not. But there is an “I” in independence, individuality and integrity.’” Avoid teams at all cost. Keep your circle small. Never join a group that has a name. If they say, “We’re the So-and-Sos,” take a walk. And if, somehow, you must join, if it’s unavoidable, such as a union or a trade association, go ahead and join. But don’t participate; it will be your death. And if they tell you you’re not a team player, congratulate them on being observant."

-George Carlin

"The more I see, the less I know for sure."

- John Lennon

Daughter of Smoke & Bone - Laini Taylor After finishing DoSaB, I sort of feel like I just went on a blind date, one that was set up by my friend who is convinced that we will live happily ever after. I feel like she's called me, all excited, waiting for my thoughts on this guy/girl, and I have to grit my teeth and say, "I had a nice time, but...I don't think we're meant for each other."So many books are hyped, but the hype I pay particular attention to are the reviews from people I follow on GoodReads. We all have differing tastes, but we all enjoy a good story, with well-crafted characters, memorable but plausible dialogue, and effective world-building.I'm not sure where to start, but this book was a positive and negative reading experience for me.First off, the good, or should I say great - the world-building was excellent. I truly felt like I was in these settings.The writing - beautiful. Taylor is an absolute talent. The unusual characters - wonderful. I loved reading about demons and angels and the world they belong in. Now to what I didn't like.The pacing - It tended to drag. I know I am impatient, but there were many times when I had to reread passages because my mind had wandered in the middle of reading. Plus Taylor does the same thing I do - run on sentences that are layered with thoughts seperated by commas. It's hard to keep from doing that - I might always be guilty - but it's so distracting to read. I would have to read a sentence a few times to truly get what was happening.The instalove - I will probably get vilified for this, but I could not see how the love story between Akiva and Karou (and Akiva and Madrigal, for that matter), was NOT instalove. They meet, there's a connection, and then BOOM -they're planning a future together. That's instalove.You know what, though? I get it. As a writer, you want the readers to look at these characters and to have them say "these two were meant to be". But there has GOT to be a better way than instalove. Plus it's so scary and fun to get into a relationship, to get to know the other person and feel excited and nervous around them. Learning new things about each other, developing inside jokes, sneaking glances at each other, giggling like kids...why do writers skip over that? It's such a wonderful experience! We should feel that transition WITH them.Also, Akiva is, of course, an exquisite beauty. There's an excellent reason for it, though, as he's an angel, but I truly ache for a story in which the love interest isn't fall-down gorgeous.I get it, though. In my story the love interest is physically stunning, but there is a reason for it. Still, it makes me realize how this is EVERYWHERE in fiction, not just YA, and I'm starting to wish for something different.Again, this might be just something that's exclusive to me, as I don't find people all that attractive until I get to know them, or learn things about them that make them irresistible to me. (I am struggling not to give a real life recent example here involving someone famous, as I don't want to bore you). But still. Beauty is not a positive personality trait. It is an attribute, and while I am fully aware of the importance appearance has in society, it would be nice to see something new and different, particularly in YA.I digress, of course. One thing that I didn't care for was Akiva watching Karou sleep. It's explained, as is his attraction and connection to her, but it's still creepy to think of a guy you don't even know watching you sleep. (actually shudders)There were parts in the story that I feel could have been edited out. Did we really need all that detail about Zuzana's project? Yes, it was incredibly cool, but was it necessary? This book is over 400 pages. Also I absolutely HATED the scene in which Zuzana met Akiva. I'm sure lots of readers thought it was hilarious, but it irritated the hell out of me. She's worried about her friend being around this stranger and as soon as she sees this guy she says, "Must mate!"? It went into the obligatory "funny best friend tries to get her friend to bang the hot weird guy" scene that's in almost every YA book. Ugh. So my take on this is that I will probably read the next book. Probably. But I'm not dying to read it, and it makes me kind of sad.