Saturday, March 3, 2012

Incarnate by Jodi Meadows, A She Said/She Said Review

Hi, Amethyst here. I'm taking lead for this round of She Said/She Said. Why? 'Cause I finished the book first, s'why. In fact, I finished Jodi Meadows's debut novel Incarnate about forty-five minutes ago. I purchased it yesterday, and to be fair, I did have a 70-page head start before I began reading last evening.

I'd say it's a fifty-fifty split as to how I'm finished with Incarnate; fifty per cent, I'm kind of a sprinter when I read, so if I like a book, I tend to like it in fast forward, and secondly, Jodi's novel accomplishes earning both the descriptions "light" and "full. On the one hand, Jodi has an almost unconscious stream-of-conscious (say that five times fast) charm. Knowing her outside of the author/reviewer format, I can tell you, Jodi's bouncy enthusiasm and kitten-like perplexity shine right through, even in main character Ana's most wrought moments. On the other hand, I never got the feeling Jodi didn't respect the gravity of the sometimes monstrous events taking place in Ana's life, and her world. Even with the subtle touch uncertanties were uncertain, fears were fearful, and warm fuzzies were dandelions poofs at the height of summer.

What did I like best? The Almosts. The almost kisses. The almost weepings. The questions almost answered. I love the way Jodi managed to make me (metaphorically) lean forward so far out of my seat I ALMOST fell out of it, and yet, never once did I actually face plant into the carpet. There was that subtle grace again, the grace of almost.

What didn't I like? Yes, as much as I enjoyed Incarnate, I do have one or two gripes. First of all, the math of things was confusing. I'm no stranger to math confusing me, but even I generally get the gist within real applications such as generations and ages. Even for a necessarily convoluted (and very cool) concept, the numbers seemed to contradict each other more than they lined up. Maybe because I was reading too fast? I wanted a clearer explanation of the term "quindec" than what I gleaned from context clues. Also, early on in the book I was under the impression people had only been around for about a thousand years, but later it's stated they'd been living and turning through the revolving door of reincarnation for at least five millenia, not one. Trying to get the two things to agree in my head was a bit of a draw out.

My other gripe is a lack of Author Photo. Jodi's really cute. The world deserves to get to Awwww over the cute that is Jodi Meadows.

Last but not least, it should be mentioned, I read a copy of Incarnate I purchased, so it was as polished as need be. Michelle, lucky early bird, was blessed to have been granted an e-ARC, compliments of NetGalley. This means her copy may have been slightly different than mine, and therefor might (or might not!) reflect in her review (which I have not yet seen).

I bought the book, so I think that's a pretty clear Buy, right?