Thursday, March 14, 2019

All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders

Science Fiction

I struggle to find the words to describe this book for me. It centres around two characters: Patricia and Laurence. Patricia is a witch who can cast spells, heal people, fly, and talk with animals. Laurence is a tech geek who can build incredibly complex machines and AI. The two should have absolutely nothing in common but they find each other as outcasts in school. When Laurence learns of Patricia's skills, they drift apart but reconnect as adults. Meanwhile, the world around them is turning to shit and it could be on them to fix it.

In a book of science fiction and fantasy, I expect some realism to ground the story but there were things that just didn't make sense. For example, in school, Patricia is made to look like she is cursing and throwing a dead animal at the guidance councilor. She runs away from the school and the entire town groups up to find her. Excuse me? Why does a town care enough about a school kid an a supposed curse to hunt her down?

There's also the trained assassin sent to kill the kids. He has a heavy presence at the start of the book, completely disappears for a while, then pops up again with an incredibly quick and unsatisfactory resolution to the point where I dont even understand the purpose of introducing this character at all.

The book was riddled with weird problems like the two described. I liked Patricia and Laurence as characters and the premise of science vs nature was a good one, but the execution just wasn't satisfactory for me.

First Line: "When Patricia was six years old, she found a wounded bird."


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