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BookRatMisty

BookRatMisty

Impossible

Impossible  - Nancy Werlin Slightly under a 4 due to the style and some issues, but all in all, I liked it. I was excited for this one because of this gorgeous cover. And in some ways, it lived up to my excitement, while at the same time, falling short in others. Werlin presents a very modern, disturbing slant on the age old ballad. She layers the book with enough realism and negativity (nothing is ever falsely sugar-coated; Lucy is a realist, if nothing else) that I was able to believe that things may not be wrapped up with the expected "happily ever after." I like having that doubt when I read a story, because I like thinking that an author is going to do what's right for the story and the characters they have created, and not cop out with an easy, happy ending. Because of this realistic streak and clearheadedness from Lucy, the magical elements of the story, no matter how far-fetched, seemed more balanced and true, which I definitely liked. Lucy felt real, and I cared about her and the plight of the Scarborough women.And I liked what Werlin did with the ballad. In her afterword, Werlin talks about how the book came about, saying she loved the Simon and Garfunkel version as a kid, but as she got older and really listened to the words (in which a man requests that a woman complete impossible tasks to be his true love), she had an epiphany: he doesn't love her, he hates her. Faced with this new 'understanding' of the ballad, Werlin set about fleshing out their story; clearly, there was once something between them, but something soured it. Her story of Impossible grew from this seed. This idea really struck me. I liked the idea that she was revisiting something and approaching it from a fresh angle, and that whole "thin line between love and hate" element was brilliant, I think, and a very adult take for a YA novel. I really liked this aspect.Unfortunately, it was inconsistent. Werlin's adult application to the story wasn't carried throughout. Sometimes the writing was very adult and forward, and sometimes it was almost juvenile and a bit weak for me. The characters, too, were inconsistent. The Elfin Knight (bad guy of yore) was very villainous, for sure; at times he made my skin crawl, which was great*. But there are more fine lines than the one between ♥/hate, and his villain-line was occasionally crossed into cheese territory. I wish she would have dialed it back just a bit at the end. And though Lucy felt fleshed out and real to me, the other important characters felt occasionally cardboard. Not always, by any means, but I just found myself wishing for a little more from them.Now, all this being said, I didn't dislike the story. It didn't live up to the excitement generated by its cover or the subject matter, or to the really good threads I saw running through it -- but it wasn't a failure, either, and I don't regret buying it. I could tell it was well researched and plotted out, but it just had a tendency, especially in the beginning, to feel a little clunky and young. In spite of this, I found myself engaged, and I didn't ever not want** to read it; I found myself thinking about Lucy and the tasks, and the story in general, and that's a good sign. With a little more finesse, I think I'd give it an enthusiastic recommend, but instead it's a reserved one. If you like fairytale retellings and stories that make you a little uncomfortable, you'll like this one and will likely be able to overlook the issues; if you don't, I'm just not sure...*Yep. Great skin-crawling. But that means it was effective, so that's a + in my opinion.**If that made any sense...