Mini Reviews #13: In Which I'm a Black Sheep

by - 6:40 PM

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

Criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker has been offered wealth beyond his wildest dreams. But to claim it, he'll have to pull off a seemingly impossible heist:

Break into the notorious Ice Court
(a military stronghold that has never been breached)

Retrieve a hostage
(who could unleash magical havoc on the world)

Survive long enough to collect his reward
(and spend it)

Kaz needs a crew desperate enough to take on this suicide mission and dangerous enough to get the job done - and he knows exactly who: six of the deadliest outcasts the city has to offer. Together, they just might be unstoppable - if they don't kill each other first.

4/5 fem!Hobbits
"Four stars??" you say. "But, Ellie, that sounds like you enjoyed it!"

And yes - I did. I liked it. It was nice. But after reading all the insane hype about it, it fell really flat for me.

I liked some aspects of this book, I disliked many aspects, and there wasn't anything I loved. I liked Kaz and Wylan. I liked the concept. But I couldn't connect to any of the other characters. I found the writing itself to be extremely bland. There was no real suspense or gut-wrenching angst, except for a couple fleeting moments. And I never felt immersed in or compelled by the story. Yes, Six of Crows is a good book - but I didn't find it to be a great one. It has tons of flaws, and it's nowhere near my top ten list from 2016. I enjoyed it, but after all the hype and expectations, it was definitely a disappointment. 

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

Guy Montag is a fireman. His job is to destroy the most illegal of commodities, the printed book, along with the houses in which they are hidden. Montag never questions the destruction and ruin his actions produce, returning each day to his bland life and wife, Mildred, who spends all day with her television "family." But when he meets an eccentric young neighbor, Clarisse, who introduces him to a past where people didn't live in fear and to a present where one sees the world through the ideas in books instead of the mindless chatter of television, Montag begins to question everything he has ever known.

2/5 12-year-old criminal masterminds.
.....okay, I get the feeling I'm really the black sheep on this one.

I absolutely loved the message and theme of Fahrenheit 451. The moment we eliminate freedom of choice and speech, we eliminate all freedoms. (@ Donald Trump)

But I found the writing style to be uniquely dry and unemotional. I've read a few of Bradbury's short stories, and I find I have this problem with all of them. I love the plotlines, but it's nearly impossible to slug through the prose to enjoy them. I'm never pulled into the story. I never connect to the characters. And Fahrenheit 451 was no exception.

Dan and Phil Go Outside by Dan Howell and Phil Lester

A personal collection of candid photos and insightful stories from Dan and Phil’s adventure ‘in the real world’

Dan Howell and Phil Lester, avoiders of human contact and direct sunlight, actually went outside. Travelling around the world on tour, they have collected hundreds of exclusive, intimate and funny photos, as well as revealing and captivating side notes, to show the behind-the-scenes story of their adventure.

3/5 sad sociopaths.
I mean....

Maybe my "meh" feelings on this book stem from me being an intensely intellectual individual. I read history textbooks for fun; I love learning and need constant mental stimulation. This was mainly a photo book - a fun photo book, to be sure, but a photo book nevertheless. It was interesting to see behind the scenes of The Amazing Tour is Not on Fire, but, like with The Amazing Book is Not on Fire, I really wished for some more text - more personal stories, more tour mishaps, more of a "travel log" style approach. It was fun to flip through the photos, but I wish there was a little more substance.


But wait! Before you go: there's a very quick survey I'd love you to take about which books you want me to review. After all, reviews are about helping others decide whether or not to read the book - and I can't be of any help if I'm not reviewing books you're interested in reading. The survey is currently updated HERE, so do go check it out and vote!

You've done that? Awesome, let's chat! What books are you a black sheep about? Have you read any of these books? What did you think of them? Comment below, and remember you are all very beautiful pickles.


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  1. I usually don't like very popular book, but I absolutely love Six of Crows! I actually really loved all of the characters, it's too bad that you didn't as well. What fun would it be if we all liked the same things, though? ♥
    Amy xx

    Little Moon Dragon

    1. I really wanted to like Inej and Matthias, but I just.....couldn't connect. I agree!

      - Ellie

  2. I'm usually a black sheep for popular books. I read SIx of Crows and I really liked, but I think all of your points are absolutely true. (Also, have I mentioned I really loved your rating system like omg 11/10 12-year-old criminal masterminds for you!!!! )
    - Sar

  3. SIX OF CROWS SEEMS TO BE EVERYWHERE NOW AND I'M JUST SITTING IN THE CORNER LIKE 'yup. hehe. haven't even seen a copy of it in person yet'. I need to read it but I've heard great things, which worries me because hypes usually leave room for a lot of disappointment.

    I hear you about the whole 'black sheep' thing with popular books. So many of my friends are die-hard HP fans (and so am I) but I didn't really like CC? And they all did?

    1. That's how it was with me! But I think you might enjoy it - just go in expecting a good book, not a great one.

      I was going to read Cursed Child, but it just......didn't look well-written, I guess. I tried a few chapters in a bookstore, and it wasn't very compelling.

      - Ellie


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