In A World Just Right (2000)
In a World Just Right (2000)
4.7 of 5 Votes: 4
148141660X (ISBN13: 9781481416603)
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A quick read that kept me engaged to the very end. The end itself, however, was ridiculous--by retaining world-makers in the real real world, the author sacrificed the disbelief I was willing to suspend for the coma story, and even the miraculous coming back to consciousness fully educated and beautifully whole aspect. Instead of a sweet, simple, utterly linear tale of a boy regaining consciousness after years in a coma, it became a bizarre story of miracles, spiritual or supernatural otherworldliness, and teenage obsession. Not the better choice, in my opinion. Great first book by this author. Fascinating concept of reality; my brain feels as if it's been stretched and needs to lie down and take a rest. The book delves into ethical/religious issues of creation, the reason for our existence, the concept of God, responsibility for what we create as well as manipulation, love, human desire - in addition to beautifully presenting unimaginable grief that this century and the one before it, all too frequently must confront because it is so common. Being a world-maker - what a great superpower!Wonderful poems - wish there had been more. The kids sound like kids. (You can tell Jen Brooks been a teacher-great descriptions of school, assignments, kids' voices). They're funny and earnest and sarcastic and confused. They act like kids. Spot on. I was a little confused at first, which made it a little hard to connect. I enjoyed the Massachusetts settings - I live not far away from the author and recognize many of her references. The writing is wonderful - see golden lines below. I would have given this a 4 except that I think the melding component falls outside the tightly constructed world of this book; it just didn't seem to fit and it was kind of gross. In addition, the first melding seemed very awkward and too sexually implicit given the characters (no spoiler alert here) but even though that was somewhat "resolved" at the end, I felt it weakened that section. This would be great paired with "Frankenstein" and "Pygmalion" and creation myths. Minor character Kaitlyn Frost is delightful - hope there's a book about her.Golden Lines:"His scar would be a badge of honor, a war wound." (5)."...something happened last night - a breath, a murmur, a shift in the earth, like everything under me slid a millimeter of center from where it should be" (6)."It was in third grade. You just became like a statue after a while. No one even made fun of you anymore because you just sat there in your own world and didn't respond to anything" (74). "I'm highly aware that I made her what she is. I'm les her boyfriend than her keeper. her creator. And this change I how I see her sickens me, frightens me, because all this time I thought I loved her" (109)."I'm surprised to find out how many worlds one can travel to in an art museum" (110)."...Kylie, moving among the art, becomes indistinguishable, something molded from clay and breathed on" (112)."I thought I could get away with this come-and-go existence, but the desire to be real has become so's no longer good enough to have scattered happiness across a bunch of worlds...I want friends. I want family. I want my life to have a purpose...I don't know how to transfer all the pieces into this one real world to complete a picture, and no one can help me. I am utterly, utterly alone in this. "...I get this impression that everything in my world is a painting on a window, and if I walk up and scratch some paint away with a thumbnail, I'll see a great wide something else beyond" (156)."Make up a college major and describe the classes" (212) I loved the part on page 355 when Jon realizes three things he knows about each of his classmates - that epiphany, that waking up to awareness was skillfully written.
Fresh and unique. Still reeling from that ending.
Eh. Not really my kind of book. Review to come.
Review coming soon.
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