Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Memory of Water Book Review

Memory of Water

Emmi Itaranta

Harper Voyager

(June 10, 2014)

3/5 Stars


       Global warming and climate change are not topics unknown to the dystopian genre.  In fact, I’ve probably read more YA dystopian climate change/global warming gone haywire books than I’d care to think about.  While I do understand that these are real issues in the world today.  I often have problems with the way these books tend to implement their theories of how the world ended.  Also, there seems to be a knowledge apocalypse that goes along with these changes.  Which is sometimes understandable be is often not explained well enough to be believable by any modern reader.  Perhaps, someone who isn’t all that knowledgeable or hasn’t been around long enough to remember the way things were when there was no internet.  Might think that if we simply shut off the internet and all our cell phones that we would slip back into the wild west or the stone age.  Yeah, no…

      Predictably, the reason I being this up is that Memory of Water is one of these books.  Also, some of the problems that plague the world itself are a little bit obscure.  I’m sure in trying to create believable story of oppression and intrigue.  The author forget to world build or maybe just forgot to share that world building with her readers.  The actual plot of the story was relatively interesting.  But there seemed to be a lot of things happening that the reader should just accept at face value.  Also, perhaps the fact that the story seemed to take place in a rural Chinese village probably leaves some things a little skewed to a western audience.  Which I would be one of those people.

      The reason for the dystopia is not necessarily important.  But the effects of that dystopia should have been ever present.  Other than a lack of rain and an abundance of bugs.  There really didn’t seem too much in evidence.  And if that was all, it wasn’t enough.  I would love to know how all these bugs survived so easily without water that they kept procreating to be such a problem.  Most bugs lay their eggs in water or at least on moist leaves and such.  If the world was so bereft of water where did they all come from?  The half hearted history lesson around a third of the way through the book didn’t help and while this might have something to do with main thrust of the story.  Like, this is what happened…  But that didn’t seem to be the case.  The reader is never given the “official version” of events so that this promised secret version seems really odd.

      While the story itself wasn’t too bad.  The world building was so poorly done that it kept pulling me out of the story.

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