Sunday, 30 September 2012

My Name is Mina by David Almond

I was looking forward to reading this, since I am a big fan of Skellig by the same author, of which this is a prequel.  However, I am finding it extremely hard going, and have only managed to read about half of the book, despite it not being particularly long.

I should have known it was not necessarily going to be to my taste when one of the comments on the back described Almond as "the Gabriel Garcia Marquez of children's literature".  I really want to like Gabriel Garcia Marquez, but I just don't really get it.  It all seems a little bit try-hard.

Which, brings me neatly to My Name is Mina. Mina is an extremely interesting character, and brings a lightness and different perspective to the narrative in Skellig. However, it is the narrative that makes Skellig so wonderful, and this is what Mina lacks.  It's more of a stream of consciousness affair than a story.  I cannot think that it would hugely appeal to children, indeed A described it as "really boring" after a few pages.

There are some lovely moments in it, particularly the part where Mina has a conversation about sitting in the tree with an elderly lady, but it lacks "grip".  It is far, far too easy to put down.

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