Review War: Crewel by Gennifer Albin

15 December, 2012 Review Wars 15 comments

Review Wars

Review War

Crewel by Gennifer Albin
Enter a tangled world of secrets and intrigue where a girl is in charge of other’s destinies, but not her own.

Sixteen-year-old Adelice Lewys has always been special. When her parents discover her gift—the ability to weave the very fabric of reality—they train her to hide it. For good reason, they don’t want her to become a Spinster — one of the elite, beautiful, and deadly women who determine what people eat, where they live, how many children they have, and even when they die.

Thrust into the opulent Western Coventry, Adelice will be tried, tested and tempted as she navigates the deadly politics at play behind its walls.  Now caught in a web of lies and forbidden romance, she must unravel the sinister truth behind her own unspeakable power.  Her world is hanging by a thread, and Adelice, alone, can decide to save it — or destroy it.

Crewel by Gennifer Albin

Kat Kennedy:
Today Stephanie Sinclair and I battle to death in the eternal question generations to come will be asking themselves: Which one of us is sexier?
No… wait, was that right?
Stephanie Sinclair:
Obviously, it’s me.
I’m sexy and I know it. I-I-I-I work out!
Kat Kennedy:
I am so attracted to you right now…
Stephanie Sinclair:
You can’t help it. Don’t fight it.
Kat Kennedy:
Actually, I think we’re supposed to be talking about Crewel by Gennifer Albin before your head loses the ability to pass through a standard-sized door.
Stephanie Sinclair:
Oh, yeah.
Well, this is an interesting review war because I think it’s the first time Kat gets to play the evil antagonist.
Kat Kennedy: 
Trufax.
This is the first one in which I have been the naysayer and Steph hasn’t shown off her black heart of doom
So far…
Stephanie Sinclair:
I thought my name was Soul-less Wonder?
Kat Kennedy:
We’ll work out your supervillian name later; for now we’re on the clock!
Stephanie Sinclair:
What’s your issue with this book, mate?
(That’s my Aussie)
^^[Ed. Note: hahahahhaha!  No.-KK]
Kat Kennedy:
Well, Heartless Heather, I took a lot of issues with the book.
I think we can safely start with the inherent sexismand move onto the terrible characterisation.
Stephanie Sinclair:
Well, the book was portraying a sexist society.
Kat Kennedy:
Yeah, and that I don’t have a problem with.
I illuminate more in my review, but the book had a huge imbalance of import on male and female characters.
It readily dismissed large chunks of women as useless, pathetic, or worthless – An action not so readily applied to men.
Stephanie Sinclair:
Who was depicted as worthless?
Kat Kennedy:
1. Every Eligible Adelice entered the academy with.
2. The other Spinsters are briefly met and then dismissed by the text.
3. There is not a single girl from Adelice’s home that she remembers fondly, and only two girls she briefly remembers at all – one very negatively
Stephanie Sinclair:
What about Elanor and Loricel?
Kat Kennedy:
You mean Token, convenient-to-the-plot Elanor,
and barely-there-Loricel?
Stephanie Sinclair:
Loricel was a woman with power (debatable as the book goes on).
Kat Kennedy:
She was also little more than a cut out – when juxtaposed against Cormac, it’s pretty insulting that she’s the best that can be provided.
Stephanie Sinclair:
And the men that are mentioned, only two are really depicted in a positive light.
Kat Kennedy:
Right, but that’s my point.
There aren’t that many men in the novel and yet TWO are positive characters.
If you are a man in Albin’s world, then you’re significantly more like to be positive or at least a neutral character.
I would include her father as a positive man in the book*.
Stephanie Sinclair:
Her father was barely there – as was her mother.
Kat Kennedy:
Yeah, and so are the majority of female characters in the book.
Stephanie Sinclair:  A
AND men.
You said it yourself that there aren’t many male characters.
Kat Kennedy:
I guess my point is, for a book that’s supposed to be about women, it focuses almost exclusively on the few male characters
and by doing so, ignores the many, many female characters that surround Adelice.
Stephanie Sinclair:
I think that is due to the love triangle.
Which we both agree was not awesome.
Kat Kennedy:
The TERRIBLE love triangle?
Stephanie Sinclair:
Yup
I’m totally with you on that point. I didn’t like it.
Kat Kennedy:
No.  And as you know, Gennifer Albin wrote a guest post on this blog, and it was a pretty good post.
I went back and read it – It helped me see more what she was trying to achieve regarding characterization,
and I appreciated that, but I ultimately think she failed to translate those motivations effectively onto the page.
Stephanie Sinclair:
I think what’s interesting is that there are so few important female characters. That says something different to me.
I guess I see it a little different.
Kat Kennedy:
How do you see it, Madam Malicious?
Stephanie Sinclair:
That the society has brainwashed not only the other females, but Adelice as well.
Kat Kennedy:
Yeah, I get what you’re saying, and that’s a valid point.
And because there’s a cultural bias inherent in the characters and society, I’m ready to let Adelice’s slut shaming go,
but I’m talking about the focus of the narrative itself – which is supposed to be above that.
Stephanie Sinclair:
I think the females in the book plays off a lot of stereotypes we see today to magnify the negatives of a misogynistic society.
Kat Kennedy:
Yes, but real women are more than plays off of stereotypes.
But, moving on, the actual world building was an exciting concept
I wish there had actually been more weaving in the novel. But the weaving concept was cool.
Stephanie Sinclair:
It was very different from your usual YA dystopian novel.
Kat Kennedy: 
Truish
Stephanie Sinclair:
ish?
Kat Kennedy:
Well, some of it was very Hunger Games.
Stephanie Sinclair:
Really? How so?
Kat Kennedy: 
The dresses, the media, Cormac himself.
Stephanie Sinclair:
Ah. I see what you mean.
Kat Kennedy:
That was very reminiscent of The Capital, the use of media and President What’s-His-Face.
-The districts
-The restricted travel
-The poverty
Stephanie Sinclair:
Minus blue hair, which I would totally rock.
Kat Kennedy:
You would!
Blue hair next?
We could both do it
Stephanie Sinclair:
I think it’s one of the colors I’ve yet to conquer. I’m just worried about the smurf jokes.

Smurfs: Do not have blue hair. -KK

Kat Kennedy:
Trufax.
I wish to posit that the actual plot of Crewel was really haphazard.
There was very little focus to it.
Stephanie Sinclair: 
Umm… that’s because Adelice was imprisoned for most of the novel.
Kat Kennedy:
Yes! Then traveling one minute. Back the next!
Most of it seemed contrived so that she could spend time with one boy or the next.
Then finally about 50 pages from the end she’s like, “I should do some shit!”
Then it ends.
Stephanie Sinclair: 
Lol! Well, that’s because THINGS WERE GOING DOWN.
Kat Kennedy:
[Ed. Note: That’s what he said. – KK]
Yes!
…Boring and predictable things!
Stephanie Sinclair: 
You predicted the ending?
Kat Kennedy: 
SO predicted it
Stephanie Sinclair:
Ugh, whatever, Kennedy!
You did not!
Kat Kennedy:
I did too!
There was this moment she was talking to Loricel,
and it was all like, “LOOK WHAT I’M SETTING UP FOR THE ENDING!  HAHAHAHAH!”
And I was thinking, “Oh, so that’s how it’s going to end.”
And it did.
Stephanie Sinclair:
*sigh* You are impossible!
Kat Kennedy:
Impossibly sexy?
Stephanie Sinclair:
Yeah, that too.
Rawr!
What did you think about only women being able to weave?
Kat Kennedy:
Well… I thought it was pretty horribly handled at the end,
but I don’t want to include spoilers.
Stephanie Sinclair:
Gah! How am I supposed to respond to a response like that!
Kat Kennedy:
By seducing me!
Which is the only way this Review War is going to end,
because I don’t think either of us are ever going to agree.
Stephanie Sinclair:
Sure we are. You can just say I win.
Kat Kennedy:
Okay.  I win.
The end.
Stephanie Sinclair:
You spelled “lose” wrong, darlin’.

 

Who won, who lost?  Comment below to give your opinion!

Kat Kennedy

Kat Kennedy

Co-blogger at Cuddlebuggery
Kat Kennedy is a book reviewer and aspiring author in the Young Adult genre. She reviews critically but humorously and get super excited about great books. Find her on GoodReads.
Kat Kennedy
RT @JustineLavaworm: Don't mind me just glorying in the beauty of the US edition of #MySisterRosa! https://t.co/H4aIxTXWTv - 18 mins ago
Kat Kennedy
Kat Kennedy

Latest posts by Kat Kennedy (see all)


15 Responses to “Review War: Crewel by Gennifer Albin”

  1. readingwishes
    Twitter:

    You two are hilarious. Great review war 😀 Also: in the “Review Wars” picture, who’s punching who? Who won? Who lost? I’m still a little lost on that too. Um, well done to both of you? *runs off before I have to make a final decision*

  2. AnimeJune

    Love the review war aspect! 
    And yup, I’m on Kat’s side. The minute Loricel revealed that Spinsters were all women because women are easier to control than men, I lost all faith in this book as feminist. The idea that women are morally weaker, just, ARGH. Wrong wrong wrong wrong.
    That and the fact that Adelice is crazy-jealous of a dead woman and tacitly reveals she’s glad her love interest’s wife and baby are dead.

  3. christinareadsya

    This was hilarious to read. You both make me wish I had a copy on hand, because I can’t seem to remember the book as well as you two did. Also, I have no wish to take a side o.O. Seems very dangerous :P.

  4. Kara_M
    Twitter:

    Surprisingly, I quite liked this book, BUT I also understand where Kat was coming from with the points that she made in this war and her review. And now I’m all confused over how I should feel about this book. I did like it, but there are some flaws. I guess it will all depend on the next book which is the way a lot of series books go with me. I call a tie on this one.

  5. parajunkee
    Twitter:

    This was great ladies! As usual. Unfortunately my low IQ and lack of female mindedness (I’m sometimes secretly a man pretending to be a girl online – but only sometimes) missed any kind of useful educational influence in regard to this book. I did like the book but my brain stopped at the love triangle in which all I could think was “ooooh pretty romance – make-out make-out!!”

  6. cynicalsapphire

    OH SNAP. I love that image. One of you just punched the other IN THE FACE. Love it.
    OMG, that banana. Where do you find this shit? Steph just won the sexy contest. Looks like our work is done here.
    Oh, wait. You guys are still typing? Well, geez. OKAY.
    I must say it surprises me that Steph’s always been the negative one, since I feel like she’s always more positive, like about Armentrout covers. 
    THE WORST LOVE TRIANGLE IN THE HISTORY OF LOVE TRIANGLES? Seriously, I can’t think of a worse one off the top of my head.
    Madam Malicious. That’s definitely Steph’s dominatrix name.
    Blue hair is very Daughter of Smoke and Bone. You guys should do that for when the third book comes out.
    BAHAHAHAH, nice use of “That’s what he said.”
    Sorry Steph, but Kat kicked your butt.

    • Stephanie Sinclair
      Twitter:

      cynicalsapphire LOL, yeah, I’m actually the negative one. This year I’ve read more books I’ve liked or have been in the mood for at that time, but this is usually not the case. I think I’ve learned to be more picky.
      I will give you an even worse love triangle: Enclave. I’m not even sorry I did that to you.
      Madam Malicious. Hmmm…  http://24.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m19nfpnqg91r3ovdbo1_500.jpg
      I would totally dye my hair blue. 
      Nooooooo!!!

      • cynicalsapphire

        Stephanie Sinclair So funny! Maybe you and I are just doing a better job of avoiding books that will make us ragey? I think I’ve been more positive this year overall, too. A big part of that was telling NG to piss off, and realizing I could turn down review requests and still be in good standing.
        I do not remember being bothered by the Enclave love triangle. O_O They weren’t secret brothers who kiss the same! I need to reread that book, because I loved it when I read it a few years ago, but it sounds like I might have been on some sort of medication or something.
        Bahaha, Madam Malicious.

  7. Kate C.

    Hahaha.  Great war, as always.  Just one thing I want to say to Kat’s point about the predictable ending (even though I will say right out I didn’t read this book) I think there is a slight difference between a reader/writer and a reader.  Readers who also write have a way of being able to see into the mechanics of a book’s layout and pick out where a writer is going to go with it.  It’s one of my many frustrations with reading books.  I am rarely surprised.  And when I am surprised (i.e. The Red Wedding via George R.R. Martin) it is so refreshing.
    Man, I wish you guys had the time to do more of these.  They’re so fun!

  8. Heartless_Lyn
    Twitter:

    She can’t be heartless – thank is my name.
    Hahaha! Every time I see you guys have a total polar opposite reaction to a book, I just go get my popcorn and wait….

Leave a Reply

CommentLuv badge