Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Book Review: The Wind-Up Girl

The Wind-Up Girl, Paola Bacigalupi
3.1.11 - 3.2.11
*library book

I've been waiting to read this book for months, and I've been on the library's wait list for almost as long. I followed my sister's example and bought this book as a present for a friend's upcoming birthday but I read it before I wrapped it up. It was to make sure she would like it (she will, I'm pretty sure it's right up her alley).

When [the friend] and I went for pHo the other day, we were talking about books and what makes strong characters. She said that with screenplays (she graduated with a degree in theater), you cover the names of the people speaking and figure out if you can tell who they are. I kept that in mind with this book, and it passed the test. All of the characters (literally all except one) had their own personalities, agendas and motives. It made for a fascinating read.

The story itself was what I was the most excited about--I've definitely had an ongoing, growing fixation on post-apocalypse worlds. The story-line was a bit of a let-down, though. I think the author spent so much time developing the characters and the word that he had little energy left over for the plot.

It also felt weird that the entire novel is named after a character who plays such a small (albeit important--crucial, even role. And I liked that the main character was presented in two perspectives. Is he bad? Evil? Sympathetic?

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