Liked It1 of 1 members found this review helpful
“Among Others is kind of like a love letter to bibliophiles, especially those who fell in love with books as a youngster, finding solace and comfort between the pages of so many different stories. In some ways, Mor's character tapped me on the shoulder, reminding me of myself as a preteen. I went...”see full review » see other reviews »
Didn’t Like It
“couldn't finish it. too odd and kind of boring. like another reviewer said, it reads at times like the author just wanted to prove her knowledge of science fiction literature.”see full review » see other reviews »
“This book is a SF lover's dream! I suspect that the review I read of it must have mentioned that the main character, Morwenna, is an avid reader and that book titles are liberally sprinkled throughout the storyline. Not only are specific titles mentioned, but authors and even publishers.
Mori must be a witch, although she never says so, but witchs run on both sides of her family, and her mother certainly is. Her mother is evil, however, and Mori has sworn only to do magic to prevent something terrible from happening. The event that took her twin sister's life and left Mori crippled was caused by her mother.
Having only just met her father, she's relieved that he arranges for her to attend boarding school. She has a difficult time making friends, but finds her posse at the weekly SF book club held at the public library. Both school and public librarians appear as heroes!
Throw in a little teen romance, and it made for a satisfying read. I recognized authors who write fantasy and titles of many of the books but am not a SF fan myself. Mori is a beguiling main character, she loves books and reading, and the story ends with a battle between her and her evil mother in which her beloved books literally save her life.”
“couldn't finish it. too odd and kind of boring. like another reviewer said, it reads at times like the author just wanted to prove her knowledge of science fiction literature.”Heather F wrote this review 2 weeks ago. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“coming of age story of an extremely intelligent 15-year old girl with a difficult childhood...we get to read her "brill" (brilliant) diary where she shares her opinions on Science Fiction and fantasy books and generally deals with life...but it's made more interesting by the fact that there is a magical element to her life... I didn't start out loving it, but it grew on me and became a very fun read for me, very different.”JorieG wrote this review Sunday, April 14, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This is the diary of 15-year old Morwenna Phelps, an avid science fiction fan sent to boarding school after her twin sister is killed in a traffic accident. No ordinary teenager, Mori can see fairies. She believes her mother is a witch who is trying to take over the world.
Now Mori has to thwart her mother, avoid having her ears pierced, make new friends, do well in school, and grow up. All at the same time.
“I really liked this book but it was a little challenging for me to comprehend. I wouldn't recommend this book to young children because there was a lot of sexual things mentioned in the book. I personally thought that it was a children's book until I got to those parts.
If you like magic, love, thriller, and mysteries I recommend you read this book. I believe it is a SF book and it has won two awards. ”
"Fantasy" is the perfect descriptor for this story as, for the bulk of the narrative, you simply cannot tell if it's real or if the whole thing is a coping mechanism dreamed up by the protagonist. Written as a series of diary entries by a 15-year old girl who is either a witch or crazy, the pages of 'Among Others' simply ooze atmosphere and tension as you wonder if it's all real or imagined. The book is a page-turner despite the fact that not much really happens. Walton did a superb job of drawing me into Mori's world-view and in reminding me of why I love sci-fi as a genre.
“Among Others is kind of like a love letter to bibliophiles, especially those who fell in love with books as a youngster, finding solace and comfort between the pages of so many different stories. In some ways, Mor's character tapped me on the shoulder, reminding me of myself as a preteen. I went through some physical problems that made life very difficult for me. In fact, [ I had a hip problem that caused me to walk funny and had to use crutches before and after surgery, and people accused me of faking, as if you'd fake an injury so you could have attention you really didn't want. I also remember sitting in the library during gym hour (which was awesome since gym was always my least favorite class because all the bullies seemed to be in gym class). It was one of the few things I liked about having my hip problem, that and having a couple months out of school. I hated school, not the books but the system. But most of all, being in one of my favorite places in the world for an uninterrupted hour of reading. Whatever good books I could find in the school library. The possibilities were great, if not exactly endless, because I did eventually run out of books that I wanted to read. (hide spoiler)] I also identified with how Mor saw her life through the lens of fiction. I think that people who spend so much time reading do tend to analyze life and books in that manner.
I found myself wanting to write down all the book titles, and even looked some up on my Kindle Fire as I read. I am not a heavy science fiction reader, but I did read tons of fantasy and some sci-fi when I was younger. This book makes me want to investigate sci-fi with a renewed interest. It seems to have much to offer Mor, and perhaps I will find the same appeal with further reading. As Mor did, I read all the ones my library had, and then some of the adult books at that point. I remember that joy, which I still have, of going to the library and bookstores and finding what new books I could read. There never seemed to be enough books. The identification factor was very strong with Mor in this regard. Also having divorced parents, and how that opens a wound inside you that doesn't ever seem to heal. Lastly, a sister I love dearly. Now, my mom wasn't an evil witch. Nor was I gifted with magic powers and the abilities to see fairies (although I would love to see fairies, to be honest. I guess I'm on the wrong side of the ocean for that).
In some ways, this book has a surreal flavor. Many times I wondered how much of Mor's magic-sensing abilities and magical frame of reference was just part of her imagination's way of dealing with some events that a young person doesn't know how to handle. But, then, I think that there is too much reality to the magic here to come to that conclusion, ultimately. At any rate, I liked how at times you couldn't tell.
This lovely book is a piece of fiction that feels so intimate and personal to me. I can only believe that the author poured her own love of books and some of her own experiences with books into this book. That kind of intense realness cannot be faked. Books are such a pleasure, one that never pales. You can find so much joy and pathos in a book that it literally is like opening a door to another world, where you can escape from your own little problems enough to gain courage to face another day. Whether that's a school full of mean girls, or parents who fight more than they show affection. Or physical problems, loss, loneliness, you name it. As an adult, that allure of books hasn't palled for me. I like to think that a grown up Mor finds just as much joy and solace in her books. And I can't fault her for it. I'm the same way.
Overall rating: 4.5/5.0 stars(”
“I am really struggling to review this book, partly because I knew next to nothing about the plot going in, and I really enjoyed it. So how do I review it except to say, try it, even if you don't like science fiction. This is more than just a genre book. And you may come away with a new appreciation for science fiction and literature in general.
If you have read the book, here are my thoughts...
This showed in black and white why I have a hard time with sci fi and usually gravitate towards mysteries. I want my questions answered. I wanted to know more about the fairies. I had the hardest time accepting their presence in the story. I wanted her to either get pulled into the fairy world, learn about the fairies, go on a grand adventure and defeat her evil mother (keep in mind I was just coming off of Neverwhere). If that didn't happen, I wanted her to realize that they were made up as a way to cope with the death of her sister. Either way I wanted to puzzle out the why and how of the fairies and come up with a nice explanation by the end. But instead they just existed and stayed existing.
I loved her conversations about books. Really, that's why anyone should read this book. I loved that she was saving Dodie Smith's I Capture the Castle for the next time she was in the mood for a 'really good siege'.
This book was a blend of things I don't typically care for. I don't have anything in particular against... coming of age stories, fantasy, not an immense amount of plot, memoirs, diary-based storytelling ... but none of those are things that make me love a book. But all those things put together created a haunting beautiful story that I will carry in my mind for a long time coming. I highly recommend this.
Pinterest board showing all the books mentioned in Among Others: http://pinterest.com/tinyampersand/the-books-of-among-others/”
“I'm kind of torn because I really wanted to love this book, but in the end, it was just missing something. The ending was one of the most rushed things I've ever read. I love how books are romanticized, and anyone who is a book lover will identify with Mor's true love and connection (albeit somewhat snobby/limited to SciFi) of books. I do love that in the end, this is a book about the magic of books. But there was so much blank space in the middle where not much happened, and that's a shame. There are also a lot of blanks, the situation with her aunts, what actually ended up happening with her mom, what the fairies were, and that's disheartening to walk away from. I don't know what else to say. I really wanted this to be the perfect book and I'm pretty sad that it wasn't coherent enough to be when it had all the right ingredients. ”Runa wrote this review Sunday, February 17, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No