Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Review: Glory O'Brien's History of the Future

Title: Glory O'Brien's History of the Future
Author: A. S. King
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: October 14, 2014
Source: I received a complimentary ecopy in exchange for a honest review.

In this masterpiece about freedom, feminism, and destiny, Printz Honor author A.S. King tells the epic story of a girl coping with devastating loss at long last--a girl who has no idea that the future needs her, and that the present needs her even more.
Graduating from high school is a time of limitless possibilities--but not for Glory, who has no plan for what's next. Her mother committed suicide when Glory was only four years old, and she's never stopped wondering if she will eventually go the same way...until a transformative night when she begins to experience an astonishing new power to see a person's infinite past and future. From ancient ancestors to many generations forward, Glory is bombarded with visions--and what she sees ahead of her is terrifying: A tyrannical new leader raises an army. Women's rights disappear. A violent second civil war breaks out. And young girls vanish daily, sold off or interned in camps. Glory makes it her mission to record everything she sees, hoping her notes will somehow make a difference. She may not see a future for herself, but she'll do anything to make sure this one doesn't come to pass.

While I enjoyed the creativity in this book, the writing style and characters didn't while do it for me.

Glory is not a likable character. He best friend Ellie is not a likable character. Her father would almost be likeable if he had a life. Darla might have been likable if she was alive.

What bothered me most able Glory was her apathy. I don't connect well with apathetic characters and Glory was no exception. She didn't have any goals, didn't have any relationships besides Ellie (who she doesn't even really like) and her father and didn't care about anything.

I also didn't like the writing style. I know it was supposed to be Glory's thoughts, but she would tell the reader something in her head, then repeat it by saying it out loud. I didn't save any exact quotes, but it was kind of like this: "When I came home, my dad was watching tv. He doesn't usually watch tv. 'Why are you watching tv?' I asked." It kind of threw me off.

With that said, I found this to be a really creative book. Glory's history of the past and future was really interesting and I found myself waiting for those chapters that were interspersed in the rest of the book, but I certainly preferred them. The whole thing with the bat was a bit too bizarre though in my option.

There were some really interesting elements to this book, but it wasn't an overall success for me.

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