Note: There are no major spoilers in this post.
I recently finished a young adult novel titled ADAPTATION by author Malinda Lo. I wanted to read this book for two reasons: 1) Because it has a queer girl romance subplot, and 2) Because I am a fan of Malinda Lo’s blog.
Here are my three favorite things about this novel:
1) It didn’t “feel” like a sci-fi novel: I have a hard time getting into fantasy or science fiction novels. Actually, that’s putting it mildly. It’s more than a hard time: I just don’t tend to like them. I think I might’ve put off reading ADAPTATION because I saw that it would be classified as sci-fi. But then I read a blog interview with Malinda Lo where the interviewer mentioned that ADAPTATION didn’t read like a sci-fi novel. That’s absolutely true. It felt like a realistic, contemporary YA novel that had a bit of an X-Files thing going on.
2) The romance subplot(s) were so well-handled: A (sort of) sci-fi novel kind of calls for the focus to be on its main plot. There was action, there were questions to be answered. However, there was romance. I need a good romance to get into a book. I don’t like Romance as a genre, but I need a romantic subplot to get me all excited about the story. The way Malinda Lo balanced her romantic subplots with the main plot worked extremely well, in my opinion. It totally grounded the story into the real world, with real people. Reese was a teenager experiencing her first taste of romance and attraction (torn between the mysterious, enigmatic girl, and the dreamy, good-guy debate partner)—all the while dealing with the freaky X-Files-type of stuff that makes up the main story. It totally supported the main plot, driving it even because the stakes were so much higher with Reese’s heart on the line.
Note: Page 134 really rocked my reader world. 😉
3) The POV (point of view) worked for me: I mention this because of my own dislike of third-person POV. In this case, we were so close to Reese that every time I picked up the book to keep reading, I’d have a moment of “Oh, right—this is in third” because it felt as intimate as a first-person POV; I expected to see “I” where I’d see “Reese” and “She.” I was so glad for this because initially, I had this thought like, Okay—this is a sci-fi novel in third-person POV? I don’t know… If anyone is thinking the same thing, then I advise you not to let that get in the way.
On Goodreads, I gave it a 5-star rating. This novel was a great read. There’s a sequel due out in September 2013, INHERITANCE, which I am looking forward to.