Sunday, January 5, 2020

Uprooted by Naomi Novik

UprootedUprooted by Naomi Novik
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This book was, in a word, meh. I really enjoyed the conflict, the setting, and the action in general. The rest was dismally disappointing: the characters, their relationships, the magic system, and the plot. Here are a few representative complaints:

Why doesn't Agnieszka have any homesickness or even mention her family when she is first taken to the tower? This is a huge miss and makes her a flat character. And seventeen seems too old for this role. Fifteen would make more sense to me, given the medieval setting.

She is always acting weak, which doesn't match her outspoken nature. Is it just the inaccurate trope of a weak female? In this book by a female author? Male characters push her around, even after she has come into her ability, and she shrinks when she should fight them. She allows herself to be bullied, if not outright abused, when her power easily gives her the option to stand up for herself.

Where are all the other wizards ? Only 5 are a part of the story, but apparently there are a whole book of them.

And after only 6 months of practice she can make oxen out of mud? And then she can teleport herself?

Sarkan can move people/objects around from a distance? There is no system to this magic. Limitless other than a little fatigue. What is the cost? What are the rules? There are so many opportunities for "The way it should have ended" videos with this one.

I often feel like my favorite fiction books wrap up too quickly, without enough explanation of what happened to the survivors of whatever destruction came upon them. Well, this book showed me why that might be the best solution. This book finished, and then went on forever with all kinds of details that I didn't need. Knowing that the action was over, this was annoying. It was nice to know what happened to the characters, but you have to give that info quickly and concisely, and let the reader enjoy whatever victory had been given them.