Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Ship Breaker review

Description: In America's Gulf Coast region, where grounded oil tankers are being broken down for parts, Nailer, a teenage boy, works the light crew, scavenging for copper wiring just to make quota--and hopefully live to see another day. But when, by luck or chance, he discovers an exquisite clipper ship beached during a recent hurricane, Nailer faces the most important decision of his life: Strip the ship for all it's worth or rescue its lone survivor, a beautiful and wealthy girl who could lead him to a better life...

In this powerful novel, award-winning author Paolo Bacigalupi delivers a thrilling, fast-paced adventure set in a vivid and raw, uncertain future.

My thoughts: After finally reading this book, I can see why it won the Printz award! Every aspect of this book was well fleshed out by the author, especially the worldbuilding. This is weird because I almost felt as if I was physically dropped in the middle of this world with a limited amount of time to know more about it. Yet, I close my eyes and I can still see the waves that Nailer saw. I can feel the poverty and the hope, or the lack thereof, all around me.

This feeling of actually being there also comes from the plot pacing.  There were times that I’d be reading (normally at a particular moment where Nailer was nervous or scared) and my body would literally jerk away from the book as if I had to pull myself from the story because someone touched me or called my name (then they’d look at me strange). That’s how into this book I was! Everything was intense and fast.

And it’s amazing how every point the writer made led to many other points down the line. Everything in this book was connected to something else. If something interesting happened in the beginning of the book, it was always some type of foreshadowing for the future. And its crazy how Nailer’s one decision at the beginning of the book led to the future adventures he would be forced into. If he had chosen differently, this would have been a very dull book. Or there would have been no book at all.

Side note(s): I love having romance in the books I read. But I always enjoy finding an author who can make a book exciting without the need of a love triangle, or the star crossed lovers “ploy.” This book was a reminder that I don’t need two main characters to be madly in love with each other for a story to work.

Another thing that stuck with me throughout that book and even after I’d finished it was the idea of family.  Blood is just one thing that COULD bind you to someone, but not necessarily. Basically, the definition of family shouldn’t just be limited to the group you were born into.

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