Received from NetGalley for review.
The Hunter, the Bear, and the Seventh Sister by B.I. Woolet is listed as Young Adult fiction on Goodreads, but let’s face it, calling it children’s fiction is much more fair and realistic. I started out with high hopes for this story; the premise is fascinating, a boy taken from his boring Earthly existence into a magical world full of strange creatures? Idea – ten points, execution – maybe five. The concept behind the story is genuinely interesting and there were parts of the book that I did enjoy; using constellation names for characters in Arcas? Stroke of genius, in my opinion.
For me the writing is what really let this story down, and I know that’s awful as a book is its writing, but it just seemed too juvenile to me. I can understand that the writer is putting in lots of description to build the world and engulf the senses of the reader, but I really don’t need to know every little thing that happens. I have my own imagination and telling me how Jackson has removed his socks really is taking it too far and I got bored. A lot. It’s a shame because the language at the beginning of the story was lovely. I don’t know if it’s me just being picky and awkward but the writing style really didn’t work for me. There was also a lot of world building and quick character history through speech and random asides. Parts of the story, like The Hunter’s past, could have been expanded upon so much more, rather than just dropping it in after we’ve met him, I would’ve liked a lot more mystery with some of the characters.
Maybe I’m just being too cynical. Adult (debatable…) + English teacher + reviewer = I’m just not feeling this book. I do imagine that it would be brilliant for use in primary/elementary schools as end of the day reading with children, as I think they would absolutely love Jackson and his adventure in Arcas. I, sadly, did not, but I do think that a lot of people will love this book.
Read: January 21st-24th 2014