Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Review - The Girl with Glass Feet

The Girl with Glass Feet
by Ali Shaw

Before I completely tear this book to shreds, I'd like to just mention that I love the cover. Unfortunately, that's about all I liked.

Midas meets a girl named Ida, who is turning into glass.

Honestly, I can't come up with a better synopsis than that. This book just made me feel stupid. I didn't "get it". But, to be quite honest, I'm not entirely sure there was anything to "get".

The premise is intriguing and promises a sort of contemporary fantasy story. Unfortunately, it reads more like literary fiction. Bad literary fiction. There are endless descriptions that border on purple prose. Stop describing rocks and snow and get on with it, already. All the description felt like unnecessary padding... and I say unnecessary because the story was meaty enough to stand on its own, had the author done it right. He didn't, though. Instead, we're introduced to a number of mysteries that seem to have nothing to do with each other and which, in the end, are never explained. I don't think I've been this pissed off at a book's ending since I read Breaking Dawn (and that really pissed me off). As far as I'm concerned, it's lazy writing to introduce a bunch of mysteries and then not bother to explain any of them.

As for the characters, I wasn't impressed. They all read alike, and the author's habit of not using speech attributions made for some confusion in numerous places. Midas was not especially likable. Heck, nobody was especially likable. Everyone seemed emotionally stunted and odd, with the exception of Denver, a seven-year-old girl with the demeanour of a 37-year-old psychologist. (Don't even get me started on how her hair changed colour between pages 81 and 82. Editors, wake up!) I have a feeling that Midas was little more than a (rather blatant) self-insert... but even that didn't help make him anything more than a one-dimensional twit. Since the characters all acted alike, down to their mannerisms (it seems that the only way one can show distress is to put one's face in one's hands), when one of them went and did something a little different, it was jarring and seemed inconsistent. And, ultimately, when the conclusion came, I'd formed so little attachment to any of the characters that I didn't care.

The premise was a good one, and had it been done well, it could have worked. It's like this book wanted to be The Time Traveler's Wife. But without the chemistry between the characters, some basic answers about the mysterious affliction, and a decent ending that actually resolves something, The Girl with Glass Feet will only ever be a second-class wannabe.

Plot: 2/5
Characters: 0/5
Pace: 2/5
Writing: 2/5
Originality: 3/5

Overall: 1.8 out of 5


  1. Somewhere I have this book to read, though it sort of disappeared when I moved to Japan. :-( I guess that's not a horrible thing, though. It still sounds intriguing to me, but when literary fiction is bad, well, it can be VERY bad!
    Thanks for the honest review!

  2. Have I ever mentioned I love your reviews? Cause I do.

    It's just so awesome & refreshing to come to a blog and actually find out exactly what a reviewer thinks of a book, without holding back. I love your honesty and the fact that you're not afraid to say what you think!

    Awesome review! :D

  3. That sounds horrible! That's such a shame since that cover IS lovely... I know my friend bought this a while ago so I'll just have to warn her about this book. D:

    Lol, I love how you catch even the most minute mistakes! Good eye ;)

  4. So sorry to hear this book was such a let down! Especially since that cover is so wonderful.

  5. Great review! I have this one on my TBR pile and I'm still curious about reading it, but it's refreshing to hear another point of view on this novel. (I was pissed off by Breaking Dawn, too, so hopefully the feeling won't repeat here!)

  6. Wowah! Honest review and a great one. Girl with glass feet? Mmm, yep, maybe not that interesting after all.

  7. I must say I saw the cover and was interested in the book right away which is somewhat unusual for me. It's good to read well written and honest reviews to books. It helps to weed out the ones I can avoid because my TBR pile is already way too big! I'm still baby stepping my way through blogging, so it's good to get tips from bloggers such as you.

    On a separate note, it's great to read a blog from someone so close by. I teach in Surrey and live in Richmond. Some of your images are from the same places I have been with mom on our little photo jaunts.