Who? Todd Hewitt, 12 year old boy and his dog, MANCHEE.
Where? Prentisstown… in the New World.
What? Story set on a new planet in a town where all your private thoughts are projected out into the world. Argh, can you actually imagine?
Why? Well… that would be telling now, wouldn’t it?
Initial Final Page Thoughts.
OMFG. Proceeded by a scramble to buy the next book. I think this book had a more intense cliff hanger than The Italian Job.
This could also be a low point… but I’m going to class it as a high point, for I have found a series that grabbed me as much (maybe more… WOAH) as The Hunger Games. And yes, I may become a hermit and forget to eat while I read these books, but that’s a risk I’m willing to take. Manchee! I LOVE the writing style…was annoying at first, but it really compliment the fast pace and the ‘OMG’ of the story. No romance! Blood and guts! Manchee! A true, terrifying baddie. A great spin on the dystopian genre. Friendship! Did I mention Manchee?
It took a while to find out what the eff (see what I did there? If not… just read the book, dammit!) was going on. BUT… it was good because Todd had no idea what was going on either so you found out together. Also, the style that Ness writes in is how Todd would write, ie not very well. It’s a bit disorientating at first, especially when the Noise comes. But it all adds to the feel of this book. SO GOOD.
I mentioned the cliffhanger… which was amazing… BUT COME ON, PATRICK NESS. I made myself a deal not to buy any more books until I’ve read the ones I have got… and now my soul is tormented. What shall I do? Oh, who am I kidding? They’re already in my postman’s bag.
Oh Todd Hewitt. TODD HEWITT!! I love you and, even though for some weird reason I keep trying to picture you older, you are such a great character. I would have loved to be your best friend when I was twelve. Heck, I would love to be your best friend NOW. I’ve read a few reviews that have expressed annoyance with Todd, but I think they’re forgetting that Todd is a lot younger than most people think he is. Which explains why he is angry and confused and self-doubting and a bit of loose cannon. Considering he is so young and has been through so much, it is understandable and that’s why I love him. He’s realistic and honest and just because he doesn’t walk around with the whole ‘I’m special and therefore I am a martyr and must mope and be really annoying’ and makes mistakes and loses his temper, doesn’t make him a bad character. His reactions to the things he has to deal with are spot on for a twelve year old boy and they are the perfect combination of twelve year old boy indifference and ‘Whaaaat the hell?’
Also, he is a great great great friend. Sigh.
N/A…. although… I have thoughts that this could change in the next books… *ahem* and I would be OK with it… I think.
Oooooh Manchee. Seriously, in the past couple of weeks I have found myself wanting a best friend who comes in the form of a talking animal. Remember Taggle? Yeah he was great and funny and all.. but Manchee. He takes the biscuit, and I love biscuits. The thing is, the germ that is making everyone’s loud and clear and, well it also works on animals too. And as Todd says in the first page “The first thing you find out when yer dog learns to talk is that dogs don’t got nothing much to say. About anything.” To which Manchee replies “Need a poo, Todd.”
That is where the magic of Manchee starts. And I will leave you with that…
I will say only three things about t’other best friend because I feel like I’m already treading on spoilery egg shells…
1) She’s cute as a button.
2) She has a kickass backstory.
3) I can’t wait to find out more about her.
That is all.
This category is an interesting one because there are so many people who could technically be classed as a ‘baddie’ because of the situation they’re in and the whole belief system. Again, I don’t want to go into it for fear of spoiling it for you guys. But it is interesting, lot of debate could arise from some of the secondary characters who may at first seem evil, but all is not as it seems. However, one person is definitely a baddie….
Oh my god. Aaron. Ugh… shudder. So so so creepy. Again, don’t want to go too deep into my description, but I’ll leave you with a little note that I wrote on my Kindle about him : “What is he? The terminator?”
There’s one chapter that… ugh, not going to think about that this close to going to bed.
I know when you think of Duran Duran you think of 80s GODS who provided the world with some gems as ‘Wild Boys’, ‘Rio’ and ‘Girls on Film’ and their music is probably as far as you can get from the tone of this book. But… I think the lyrics to this are very apt for Todd and the journey he is on.
And I know Red did a respectable cover which probably goes with the book more but I feel like I would have betrayed my undying love for Simon Le Bon if I had gone with that choice. And I simply refuse to do that.
9/10. Ness is gruesome. Seriously, his descriptions are vile and gross and amazing and creepy as hell. There is a lot of violence in this book which probably explains why this series did so well with boys (which is great, more YA aged boys should read!) and girls who, like me, were raised on Tarantino. YEAH.
But, I think the most brutal aspect of this book was not the bloody violence but just the idea of everything. It’s hard to describe what I mean without ruining the story and I don’t want to do that, because this book is like a rollercoaster of twisting turns. But… let me just say this, the New World really is effed up and that’s why this book gets such a high angst rating because this angst will stick with you long after you are left teetering on the edge of that blasted cliff!
EVERYONE. But also BOYS who think reading is for simpering girls who like sparkly vampires and hate blood unless it’s theirs and it’s around the mouth of said sparkly vampires. People who want a book that offers a fresh take on the dystopian genre. People who love adventure books. People who are a bit sick of forced YA romance. People who have always wondered what it would be like to hear people’s thoughts. People who have always wanted a dog that could not only understand your thoughts, but talk to you about them… and who also chases squirrels. SQUIRREL. People who aren’t afraid to read a book with so many twists and turns that you may need to reach for the car-sickness tablets… but in a good way. People who have been blindly searching for another dystopian series to get obsessed with post-The Hunger Games. This one will do nicely, I assure you