26 February 2009

Book Banter -- Land of a Hundred Wonders

Title: Land of a Hundred Wonders
Author: Lesley Kagen
Length: ~280 pages
Genre: literary fiction
Plot Basics: Gibby McGraw is the local town reporter in her small Kentucky town... all part of her effort to become QR (quite right) after a devastating car accident killed her parents and made her NQR (not quite right). In her investigative reporting efforts, she stumbles across the biggest story possible in her town... but her easily distracted mind makes it hard for her to report and leads her to learning that those she thinks are QR have their own secrets.
Banter Points: Kagen is a master of colloquial dialogue. Many times this just comes off and strange in books, with characters dropping consonants/vowels, etc. but Kagen does it so well that it work.
Bummer Points: Word Nerd was really excited for this book after loving Kagen's debut novel, but was a little disappointed with this one. The book moves along fine until the end, which feels like one great big infodump of information that the reader had no clues about throughout the book. While it does a good job of disorienting Gibby, it's too deus ex machina for the reader, to reveal that many truths that were un-hinted at all along.
Word Nerd Recommendation: Read Kagen's first book first and then read this one, if you want.

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