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Some Kind of Animal av Maria Romasco-Moore
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Some Kind of Animal (utgåvan 2020)

av Maria Romasco-Moore (Författare)

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygDiskussioner
265715,801 (2.83)Ingen/inga
Medlem:literarylifelines
Titel:Some Kind of Animal
Författare:Maria Romasco-Moore (Författare)
Info:Delacorte Press (2020), 384 pages
Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek
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Taggar:to-read

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Some Kind of Animal av Maria Romasco-Moore

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Visar 5 av 5
Literary Merit: Not really there
Characterization: Okay
Recommended: No
Level: High School

Jolene has an unusual secret. She has a secret twin sister, Lee, who lives in the woods that surround the small town where Jo lives. They're both 15 and go running together most nights. As Jo's grades begin to tank, though, she decides that it would help if she didn't go out with Lee as often as she does. When Lee sees Jo with another high schooler in the woods, she becomes angry and attacks Henry. Since no one else was witness to this event, the townsfolk assume that Jo is the assailant. Jo feels torn about whether or not to reveal her secret twin sister to clear her name. Perhaps Jo will decide to go with Lee's suggestion of living in the woods together and forsake the modern world.

The opening chapters of this book were really intriguing. I love the concept of a secret, almost-feral twin sister living out in the woods.

Overall, though, this book has a number of flaws that keep me from being able to recommend it. The most glaring of these is the death of two men that were left completely unresolved. Additionally, the ending is unbelievable and doesn't tie up many loose ends. ( )
  SWONroyal | Jan 11, 2021 |
I didn't struggle with the pacing of Some Kind of Animal but it just left me wanting and the content seemed a little extreme from what I was expecting. I would put this book in a similar vein as The Hiding Girl by Dorian Box but that story felt a little more complete than this one. It was a little bit difficult to connect with Jo and her reactions to the events of her life and it made me feel distanced from the story. Only towards the very end of the novel do we really learn much about Lee, her sister; how she's been living, what she's gone through, etc. I despised girls like Savannah in high school and apparently, my feelings on that haven't changed. The stuff chosen to bring into the woods irked me a bit - at 15 I would have thought the girls would be a little bit smarter about the items chosen. I think that if the entire premise aside from Jo & Lee being twins was just inside Jo's mind - that would have blown it away for me.

This book contains quite a few sensitive subjects and profanity of all kinds. Mainly underage drug use, addiction, teen pregnancy, murder, death of a parent, physical punishment, and neglect (although no one believed Jo about her sister). Jo is 15 years old, resides in a small neglected mining town in the Ohio Appalachian Mountains where the rules for kids are more lax, and the residents are more old school in their approach to raising children.

As a parent, I would have a hard time letting my kid of the same age as Jo read this book. I know that many of these situations exist in the daily lives of children and I believe stories like this one need to be read too - but if it were my daughter reading it I would choose to buddy read this one. This book was an interesting concept but was very morally gray. I would be selective in recommending it and definitely to an older young adult audience who enjoys thrillers. Thank you to Delacorte Press and NetGalley for the opportunity to read this dark and twisty thriller as a digital ARC - all opinions are my own. ( )
  thereviewbooth | Jul 31, 2020 |
Series Info/Source: This is a stand alone book that I got through NetGalley for review.

Story (3/5): Jo lives in a small Appalachian town with her aunt. Jo’s mother disappeared fifteen years ago and the mystery of this casts a shadow over Jo. Unfortunately, no one knows that Jo has a secret that is causing her day to day life to fall apart. She has a sister who lives in the woods, a sister who desperately wants Jo to join her in the woods. As Jo struggles to unravel the mystery behind her family she gets drawn deeper into her sister’s world.

This was an interesting mystery but the whole thing just ended up feeling kind of anti-climatic and unfinished to me. By the end I just felt like, “Uh, okay….so what?”

Characters (3/5): Jo was okay but I was pretty frustrated with how long she had kept her sister’s secrets. I get that she couldn’t trust many of the adults in her life, but she never really tried to trust them either. I also didn’t understand some of the side characters, like her “love interest” Henry, why was he even in the story? Then there is her wild sister Lee, another interesting character but not well developed. All the characters felt kind of selfish and confused and made a lot of bad decisions which was frustrating.

Setting (4/5): I enjoyed the setting in a small Appalachian town and the forest surrounding it. The author did a good job making this sleepy small town setting really come alive for the reader.

Writing Style (3/5): This was a bit of a mess overall. I never felt like there was much propelling this story forward. Yes, there was the mystery about Jo’s mom but I never felt like it really mattered. Also there was Jo’s sister but I never felt like there was a good outcome for her and the way it ended was very non-committal. The writing was okay and the descriptions of the surroundings were good. Everything else felt really under developed and unfinished to me.

My Summary (3/5): Overall this was an interesting idea and I loved the description around the settings. However, the story didn’t have a lot to drive it forward. I also felt like the characters and the resolution were unfinished. It was an okay read but I didn’t love it and wouldn’t necessarily recommend it. If you have a particular interest in children that grow up literally wild, you might enjoy this. ( )
  krau0098 | Jul 9, 2020 |
A weird and creepy story, no less enjoyable for its eccentricities.

(Full disclosure: I received a free e-ARC for review through NetGalley. Content warning for child abuse, domestic violence, addiction, mental illness, and misogyny.)

"I hide myself as much as I hide my sister. I hide the person I am when I’m with her. When I was a kid it was easier. How I acted in the day wasn’t much different from how I acted at night. Outside of school at least, the kids of Lester roved about, playing in the woods behind someone’s house or alongside the train tracks, fighting with sticks, running races, trying to catch fish in Monday Creek, acting out plays with dead bugs as the actors. But as I got older, there were more and more things that weren’t acceptable or cool, especially for a girl.

"I added them all to the secret half of me."

***

"That’s the one thing we do all have in common. Pretty much every kid I know is looking forward to the day when they can escape this place. Savannah dreams about moving to a city. She’s always going on about her second cousin in Cincinnati. Other kids talk about heading up to Columbus or down to Delphi.

"Me, though, I already escape every single night."

***

"We are lambs who refuse to learn, I think. We will wander until the end of our days, not afraid of wolves. But together. Always together."

***

Fifteen-year-old Jolene "Jo" Richards has a sister - an identical twin only she knows about. Lee is a wild thing, a feral child, who lives in the national forest that surrounds their hometown of Lester, Ohio. At night, Jo sneaks out her bedroom window to run with Lee. By day, she pretends to be an ordinary, unexceptional girl.

Well, as "normal" as a kid like her can be; it's hard to stay under the radar when your mom is missing and presumed dead, a likely teenage murder victim. Jolene, for whom Jo was named, had Jo at fifteen. When Jo's grandmother Margaret found out about the pregnancy, she kicked her daughter out of the house. For a while, Jolene lived in a double-wide trailer on the outskirts of town with "the Cantrell boys" (said in ominous tones, natch), Logan and Brandon. Logan, the older of the two, was widely considered bad news: he sold drugs, abused women, and is possibly Jo's father. (It's hard to know for sure; Jolene was "friendly," as they like to say.)

The last time anyone saw Jolene alive, she was enormously pregnant and pounding onion rings at the bowling alley - in the company of none other than Logan and Brandon. A week later, Brandon showed up on Margaret's doorstep and thrust a newborn baby into her arms. Now Jo lives with her Aunt Aggie ... and haunts the night with a specter that only she can see.

When a teenage boy is attacked in the woods, Jo the only witness (it happened during her first kiss, the horror), the crime sets off a cataclysmic chain of events. For nearly a decade, Jo has tried to keep Lee hidden, a secret. Lee is wild and paranoid and free; discovery equals captivity, imprisonment, domestication. Maybe even scientific study. Certainly death - if not of Lee's body, then her spirit.

But is Jo willing to trade her own freedom for Lee's? After all, the girl who attacked that boy wears Jo's face. Everyone thinks it was Jo who ripped out a boy's throat during a midnight makeout session. As if her rep wasn't already sketchy enough.

Some Kind of Animal is, well, kind of bonkers, and I mean that in the best way possible. I try not to shy away from 3-star books, because every once in awhile I'm delightfully surprised by a story that everyone else seems to hate - or hold ambivalent feelings for, at best. (See, e.g., The Blondes by Emily Schultz.) Some Kind of Animal is 110% one of those books: it's bizarre and meandering and the plot never seems to lead where you think it will.

It defies easy categorization. Is it a mystery? A supernatural thriller? A horror story? A psychological study? A cultural critique? All of the above?

Some Kind of Animal is its own beast, and it's what I love most about it.

If I had to sum it up as a mashup, I'd pitch Some Kind of Animal as Thelma & Louise meets Our Endless Numbered Days (or insert your own YA survivalist story here), maybe with a touch of The Grace Year. It's so many things, but at its core beats a fierce feminist heart. This is a story about sisterhood, in both the literal and larger sense. About the way society judges women - and conditions women to judge one another.

Through Jolene and Jo and Lee and Savannah, Moore interrogates slut shaming and woman hating. Collectively, they are living, breathing illustrations of how society prefers its women dead and tragic - and maybe just a little bit sexy - rather than alive and wild and in control of their own sexuality. Each is a fascinating character in her own right, but it is their relationships with one another that truly sparkle and ignite.

Some Kind of Animal is also a compulsive thriller; more than a hundred pages go by before Moore lets use know whether Lee is simply a figment of Jo's imagination (no spoilers here!). There's a supernatural, otherwordly vibe to the story that I adore; these pages are populated by the night creatures, and I half expected a witch or vampire to emerge at some point. The pacing is pretty wild, too; it feels like you're reaching the climax of the story about halfway through - but, alas, there are still 190 pages left! Where will Moore lead us next? (Astray, hopefully, because these liminal spaces are where the magic happens.)

Anyway, I'm glad I snagged an ARC before the reviews started rolling in; I might have passed on it otherwise. It's the kind of story you either love or hate, and I fall firmly into the former camp.

(This review is also available on Amazon, Library Thing, and Goodreads. Please click through and vote it helpful if you’re so inclined!)

http://www.easyvegan.info/2020/07/28/some-kind-of-animal-by-maria-romasco-moore/ ( )
  smiteme | May 29, 2020 |
This book was not what I thought it would be, and not in a good way. If it was fantasy, or allegory, or just an unreliable narrator (which is the expectation that the blurb and the whole first half build up) that would be one thing, but instead it's all meant to be taken literally, which is just too silly. I guess it's true that children can have some very unrealistic ideas about things, but the range of horrible things the main character allows to happen and the horrible things she causes to happen are wildly out of proportion with their consequences, and not even in an interesting way, just in a way that makes the reader scoff. The ending for these characters is undeserved. ( )
  bibliovermis | Jan 21, 2020 |
Visar 5 av 5
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