25 March 2016

Review: Passenger by Alexandra Bracken

Reviewer: Kayla
Author: Alexandra Bracken
Pages: 486
Format: Hardcover
My Rating: 3/10

Summary (Goodreads. Da real MVP):
Passage, n.
i. A brief section of music composed of a series of notes and flourishes.
ii. A journey by water; a voyage.
iii. The transition from one place to another, across space and time.

In one devastating night, violin prodigy Etta Spencer loses everything she knows and loves. Thrust into an unfamiliar world by a stranger with a dangerous agenda, Etta is certain of only one thing: she has traveled not just miles but years from home. And she’s inherited a legacy she knows nothing about from a family whose existence she’s never heard of. Until now.

Nicholas Carter is content with his life at sea, free from the Ironwoods—a powerful family in the colonies—and the servitude he’s known at their hands. But with the arrival of an unusual passenger on his ship comes the insistent pull of the past that he can’t escape and the family that won’t let him go so easily. Now the Ironwoods are searching for a stolen object of untold value, one they believe only Etta, Nicholas’ passenger, can find. In order to protect her, he must ensure she brings it back to them—whether she wants to or not.

Together, Etta and Nicholas embark on a perilous journey across centuries and continents, piecing together clues left behind by the traveler who will do anything to keep the object out of the Ironwoods’ grasp. But as they get closer to the truth of their search, and the deadly game the Ironwoods are playing, treacherous forces threaten to separate Etta not only from Nicholas but from her path home... forever.

My Thoughts:

You cannot fathom the distance I would travel for you.

((you cannot fathom the distance i would travel to get the heck away from this book))

If you haven't noted the extremely long timeline of my progression through this book, let me inform you that it is far too long, almost unnecessarily so. I could blame the overwhelming number of novels and things I've had to read for school for the reason as to why this took me so long to read, but I'm gonna be straight with you: this book was not gripping whatsoever.

At first, I thought the premise was extremely interesting and the first three to four chapters had so much potential. Throughout the novel, we get so many informational dumps, the plot was very jumpy, and there is still a lot of aspects of the world I do not understand. Again, the potential for the plot was and still is there, but I really don't think I'm going to be continuing with this series/trilogy/whatever. Also, it was so slow. So. Slow. So. Unbelievably slow. The basic plot was introduced to us 200 and some pages in. There was so much unnecessary writing that could have been easily scrapped. I feel like Alexandra Bracken tried so hard to make this world as intricate and deeply unique as humanly possible that it just left way too much underdeveloped or unexplained that I could not grasp any of it.

This is the first Alexandra Bracken book I have read, so this is the first time I have been acquainted with her writing. It was not the worst writing style I have ever experienced, but it certainly wasn't beautifully outstanding. I think the descriptions of many of the things was quite matter-of-factly and the novel lacked artfully beautiful imagery that I love.

Not even the characters could salvage this story for me. I found Etta to be quite self-righteous and annoying, but I did like her "I don't need no man to protect me mentality." Even so, her thought processes had me questioning her judgment and I just could not connect with her in any way shape or form. As for Nicholas, I did like his character and I liked the way got into his mindset of living in his time period as a person of colour that had to deal with things such as slavery, something I myself as a white person in this day in age has never had to personally go through. I also enjoyed the racially diverse characters other than Nicholas, like Hasan. Honestly, Hasan was my favourite character in the book, which kind of sucks because he was introduced like 350 pages in. Still, he was refreshing and new and I loved his sarcastic comments about Nicholas to Etta and his loyalties.

Other than that, I can't say much more about this book because I quickly lost interest in it. There were many information dumps that I could not grasp, Etta was boring and unrelatable, and I just completely lost interest in the book and had no care in the world to continue, but stubbornness won out and I finished anyway. I can see the potential and why some people would really like this book, but it just was not for me.

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