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laceylouwagie

A Reading Vocation

"I Must Read, Read, and Read. It is my Vocation." - Thomas Merton

This is where I chronicle my reading life.  I also blog about writing at Lacey's Late-night Editing.

 

Book 38/100: We Are the Ants by Shaun David Hutchinson

— feeling alien
We Are The Ants - Shaun David Hutchinson

3.5

This is that review that I just keep putting off. I'm not quite sure why I didn't like this book more. Maybe it was just not the right time. It's got so much going for it that I should be able to appreciate -- a message about the beauty of life even when sucky things happen, a sci-fi subplot that may or may not be real, gay characters who are not defined by their sexuality, good writing, and believable, nuanced characters.

But somehow this book just didn't end up being more than the sum of its parts for me. Perhaps the main character's consistently bleak outlook on life just started to get to me in a YA novel that is this long (400+ pages). It felt a little too long to me, but that may be circumstantial -- I was trying to squeeze it in before it had to go back to the library, which means it interrupted the other book I was reading (bookus interruptus). I wanted there to be MORE about the sluggers (aliens), since that was the main draw for me. And I wanted slightly less ambiguity about whether they were actually real or not, even though usually ambiguous endings don't bother me much.

It felt a little bit like a book that was trying too hard, which is a little unfair because objectively I think it succeeded in what it set out to do. But I just didn't feel satisfied. I feel like this is one of those cases when it's not you (book), it's me.