Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Extraordinary Means

I didn't exactly want to post on this book (which is Extraordinary Means by Robyn Schneider) (I don't post for every book I read, after all), but I wasn't certain why. I think that reading it has felt like a very personal experience and talking about it in any sort of vaguely public way just feels . . . not like something I want to do.

I can talk about basic concepts in the book. Like how it's a YA (or teen) book about a sanatorium/school for teens with a fictional strain of totally drug resistant tuberculosis. I can talk about that: it's an interesting concept, a twist on other ideas that you see that's unique enough that I really was curious to read this book, even from the summary. (Because, you know, I was going to read it, anyway, just because I watch Robyn's YouTube channel--even though she doesn't make many videos anymore, I still feel like it makes sense for me to continue reading her new books. I'm kind of loyal like that.)

But then talking about what I liked or disliked, what I felt like when I finished the book and what I took from it, that's where it gets hard. 

And I suppose that's okay.

Because I think this book started with an interesting concept and then transformed into something more than that concept. It isn't a book about disease or the possibility of dying or being under quarantine--it is, technically, but it's something else, too. I don't know. Maybe it's because I just read Divergent a couple months ago and it's still much in my mind, but I feel like there's a strain of thought or emotion that I got from that trilogy that I got from this book, too: you know how it is, when you were reading so many thoughts and questions about living and the choices we make and also the places where that trilogy took the reader and where the characters chose to go. It's kind of like that. This almost weightless place that exists in everyone's mind at some point. This place where we wonder who we are and realize that every choice we make about what we will do affects our entire lives and every bit of our lives matters and forms the people that we are. When you think like this, it's like time doesn't matter and all that matters is what we form.

Does that make sense?

I know this is hardly a book reaction--but I think that's okay. Maybe something like this is more likely to get you interested in reading this book. Oh, yes, and one more thing that might be good to note: despite all my philosophizing, I wouldn't call this a depressing book. So if you're worried about that part, I think you'll be fine. Yes, there is some sad material, but there's also a very specific balance of humor and enough of the themes about life in general that . . . I think there are other books that are sadder to read. This one is too weightless (in a good way) to drag you down.

No comments:

Post a Comment