Tuesday, March 3, 2015

The Cracks in the Kingdom

by Jaclyn Moriarty

Story summary: Sequel to A Corner of White. Elliot and Madeleine write letters to each other through the crack connecting their worlds--Madeleine from England, Elliot from the Kingdom of Cello. There's also adventure, friendships, spell-hunting, turquoise rain, manipulative princesses, and lots of musing about life, love, and physics.

Why You Should Read This:
  • Very original fantasy world (living colours!).
  • But also contemporary England.
  • Great interactions between characters.
  • And wonderfully complex characters as well.
  • Just lots of fun, while also being thought provoking. You should read it.

And Why You Shouldn't:
  • If you don't like even the hint of a love triangle.
  • If teenagers and their emotional problems annoy you. (Even though said emotional problems aren't so much "Does he like me?!?!" and more "Why did my dad run away with an enemy agent?!?!")
  • If you have such a strong view of your particular philosophy that you don't want to read about a girl musing on life, love, physics, etc.

Thoughts: I really, really like Jaclyn Moriarty's books. I just find them really... cosy? Man, it's hard to find the right words for how I like them. Because they aren't cosy. Some rather horrible things happen, and there's illness and depression and death. And the strange world-building, with attacking Colours, and cracks between worlds that open when you feel displaced... None of that constitutes cosiness. Maybe because it pulls me in completely without getting me excited, thrilled, upset, any of those stronger emotions. But it pulls me in none the less, and quite strongly too.

Also, as a quick note, I really liked some of the things Madeleine thinks about. For example, on page 68-9, she realizes that she had this impression that people in the past were kind of dumb and ignorant for thinking the things they did, like that the earth was flat. And that now we are so much cleverer. But it's not actually like that at all. It's one of my pet peeves--judgementalism of the past-and I really liked that she wrote that part.

So there we go. I love this series, and I love this author. The characters and their relationships, the world-building, the ideas and the prose--so good!--all pull together in such a great and charming way.

Grade: 3 1/2 stars

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