Sunday, June 10, 2012

The Drowned Cities

Okay, Bacigalupi is the author who finally makes me take a stand and say "It's not a fucking YA book just because some of the central characters are youths." He started pushing it with Ship Breaker, but this is the one that goes all the way over.

Will older kids (read: Teenagers) be cool with it? Yes. Will some (not all) of the younger ones? Yes. Hell, I was reading King and his ilk by the time I was 10, and I'm not overly-damaged. The violence is fairly constant, and not in any way sanitized.

But will they grasp some of the messages within it, regarding fanaticism, indoctrination, loyalty and the like? I'm not sure. Though I'm also not sure if they need to. Maybe taking it in solely on the level of "Tool is a badass" (to quote another reviewer) is enough... and maybe it'll stick with them enough to warrant a future rereading of it.

While I both loathed and loved it, in a Dancer in the Dark kind of way, I hope Bacigalupi plans an eventual return to what's both a horrifying and intriguing place... the world of the Drowned Cities. A world that is, sadly, all too believable.

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