About My Book Reviews

Friday, September 7, 2018

A List of Cages by Robin Roe

 Image result for A List of Cages
Title: A List of Cages

Author: Robin Roe

Genre: Contemporary

Grade Level: YA

-Trigger Warning: Child Abuse

-Movie Rating: R-objectivity against women, and violence against children

-Features: ADHD, Foster Care

(This review will only be over the first half)

Blurb (from goodreads):
When Adam Blake lands the best elective ever in his senior year, serving as an aide to the school psychologist, he thinks he’s got it made. Sure, it means a lot of sitting around, which isn’t easy for a guy with ADHD, but he can’t complain, since he gets to spend the period texting all his friends. Then the doctor asks him to track down the troubled freshman who keeps dodging her, and Adam discovers that the boy is Julian—the foster brother he hasn’t seen in five years.

Adam is ecstatic to be reunited. At first, Julian seems like the boy he once knew. He’s still kindhearted. He still writes stories and loves picture books meant for little kids. But as they spend more time together, Adam realizes that Julian is keeping secrets, like where he hides during the middle of the day, and what’s really going on inside his house. Adam is determined to help him, but his involvement could cost both boys their lives

My Scores:

Writing Style: Good

The writing style was okay. It’s by far not my main issue with this book. I mean I did have to read over a few sentences, just to make sure I understood them, because some of the word choices were unusual.

But it was not generic. This book was duel perspective, and I could definitely tell between the two characters voices, even if I hadn’t been told.

Characters: Annoying

The book switches between the perspectives of the two main characters, Adam and Julian. Though these characters were fully-developed, I just never got emotionally attached to them. 

Adam is a character with ADHD. He’s very outgoing, has a lot of friends, and lives a very openly. Julian is a character who has suffered tremendous child abuse. He’s very beaten down, shy, and fearful of the world. These two could not be more different, and yet they share a very unlikely friendship. However, as much as I wanted to root for their success, I only grew increasingly annoyed with both of them. 

Adam constantly objectifies women in his inner thoughts, and the messaging around that was ‘boys will be boys.’ If there must be vulgarity in a YA novel, I certainly expect for the messaging around it to be negative, not apathetic. 

Julian, despite his trauma, kept making stupid decisions that landed him in worse situations than he was before. It was very hard for me to believe that a person with his background would make the decisions he made.

So, on the whole, they just got on my nerves. 

Plot: No Plot!

This is my main issue with the book. There was NO PLOT to this story at all. It took half the book just to set everything up! Just to figure out what happened with Julian’s family and how Julian ended up where he was.

But that’s not a plot! There was no suspense to this story. None.
Everything in this first half could have been edited down to two chapters and no one would know.

I have no interest in finishing the book, so I’m not going to. Life is too short.

Overall: Total Garbage

This book is total garbage because not only was it boring, it was vulgar (specifically against women). If there is vulgarity in a YA book, I want the messaging around it to be against it, not apathetic.

Obviously, the message is against the abuse and bulling of children, but there are so many other books out there, better books, that make that message abundantly clearer.

My first pick? Scared Self-less by Michele Stevens.

Goodreads Rating: 1 out of 5 stars

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