Friday, October 26, 2012

Monstrous Beauty by Elizabeth Fama [Review]

Plot: There are two story lines in this book which alternate chapters in the beginning and then converge. The first: Hester in the modern day who works in Plymouth at one of those historical reenactment places.  She's grown up sighting whales with tourists and experiencing weird happenings that pretty much tell us her town is totally haunted... well at least the church.  The second: Syrenka and Ezra who are a mermaid and a naturalist, respectively, and their (love) story set back in the 1800s.  The two stories converge to display one holy horror of a book.

Verdict:  Impeccably written. Seriously.  Attention to details, specifics, setting, characters.  All very wonderfully developed and awesome.  The words are vivid and jump off the page at you.  I usually find alternating stories a little hard to follow because I usually favor one plot line over the other.  This was not the case with Monstrous Beauty.  I was enamored by Syrenka and Ezra just as much as I was by Hester and Peter.

There was one drawback for me, though.  And that was the pacing.  I know, I know, you can't have vivid imagery made of perfection and move swiftly through the plot.  You can't.  I get it.  But I'm one who prefers a swifter plot over masses of details.  I don't care what color someone's eyes are because I don't care what color your eyes are.  It's not something I pay attention to in life, and so it's not something I care to know about my characters... or the wallpaper.

But, if you're a person who loves to read fantasy, you're going to love Monstrous Beauty.  It's not a mermaid book.  It's a horror book.  And I would heartily recommend it to anyone who can appreciate a good piece of literature.  You know, the award-winning kind?  'Cause this should totally win literary awards, yo.

(also, I love that the book is bound with a white cover.  it's a stark contrast to the dark inside the pages.  i love it when publishers go metaphorical like that, on purpose or not.)

(oh, and also, if you didn't catch the Fierce Reads recap post?  check out some of the awesome i say.  awesome.)