it was bound to happen
April 15th, 2009
A bad review.
A few months ago I wrote about my iffy relationship with reviewers. Since then I had to eat those words as reviewers bestowed If I Stay with the kind of praise I could only dream of. Even today, I got my 5th starred review from School Library Journal (I’ll post that tomorrow).
But my run of good luck and reviews changed today. Sort of.
Entertainment Weekly reviewed the book. Yay. On paper, it gave it a B. Not bad. But if you read the review, you might come away wih a different, snarkier assessment. And I don’t usually take umbrage with reviews, but I find this one kinda perplexing. Most of it compares the novel to Twilight, and pretty much says that it’s no Twilight, not nearly as good as Twilight in the old sexual chemistry/love story department. Which is odd because um, no one ever said it was like Twilight, except for Entertainment Weekly, which has been linking the two books ever since news that Catherine Hardwicke would be directing the film version.
You can read the full thing here. Beware, there are spoilers, including a major plot point that’s meant to come as a surprise.
Most bewildering, the review describes If I Stay as a “sweet little piece of fluff.”
Fluff? Really? I mean there are plenty of negative things you could say about it—the poor girl’s Alice Sebold, maudlin, manipulative, sentimental, badly written, suckful, etc.—that I might not agree with but I would think are fair. But fluff? A book about a fatal car crash and a girl trying to decide whether to live or die is fluff? So a novel about a nuclear apocalypse would be, what? A comic romp.
Ah, reviews. So weird. So subjective. So bizarre.
I’m curious to see what EW gave the first Twilight book, if it reviewed it at all. I couldn’t find it in my initial search. FWIW, Breaking Dawn got a D.