Saturday, June 30, 2018

Book Review: Protogenesis

Title: Protogenesis
Author: Alysia Helming
Genre: YA, Teen, Urban Fantasy, Greek mythology
Rating: 1 out of 5 stars

DNF at 21% 
Well, I broke my read 30-35% of a book before deciding to DNF. I’m sorry but this is just YA trash (and not the good kind). Now that I've had time to calm down some and sort out my thoughts I think I can write this review without too much ranting. But to sum up Alysia Helming's Protogenesis in short I would say it is painful. The writing, characters, plot, and everything else feel like a YA trope. I almost wondered at one point if she was making fun of the genre it was so cliche. 

The List of Ridiculous Things
I'm not sure how else to easily talk about all the issue I had with Protogenesis except to list them out for you: 
- Ever is not a name. It is a word. It is incredibly awkward to read things like "Ever carried her bag". In fact when our gal first meets him I had to read the paragraph twice to make sure I read correctly that his name is Ever. It's a ridiculous name and (so far as I could tell) added no actual value, except to confuse readers. 
- All teenage boys are gorgeous. Apparently this is quite the world (even though it appears to be Earth in our time period...) that our gal lives in. Every teenage boy she encounters (and even some male adults) seem to be drop dead gorgeous! This chick is either in hormone overload (which I suppose is possible as she's a teen) or else Helming can't find a way to describe people that isn't with positive adjectives.
- Coincidences galore. Our gal spends less than 12 hours in Greece (after flying from the USA), where she knows absolutely no one. She meets two people at the airport or during her travels in the first 12 hours. And somehow those EXACT two people just *happen* to attend the same school she attends? Really? 
But then the coincidences get worse... she happens to see a cats eye gem during her first 12 hours in Greece that seems to be important; and the next day at school in her geology class the teacher just so *happens* to talk about this gem? Where do I start with my complaints: geology is the study of rocks and earth not usually gems, what high school has geology class (isn't that just science class?), and what are the chances that she learns about this rare gem on her first day at the new school? I hate coincidences that are painfully obvious. At least try to work the plot points into a cohesive and believable story please. 
- I've read this before. Based on the prologue and the quick dispatch of our gal to a new country, plus the details of the blurb on the back; this is just Percy Jackson for girls. I've already read that book thanks, no need to read a female version of it. 

On top of all that the writing is very cliche. It must include every YA trope ever (hey check it out, ever is a word not a name!) in the opening chapters, Helming has written a forced plot and nothing is shown to us, it's all told in a stilted, amateur way. I hate to be so harsh but honestly I could not find a single thing to take away from this book that I liked, or felt like I hadn't read a thousand times before.

Please note: I received an eARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. This is an honest and unbiased review.

1 comment:

Leonore Winterer said...

Oh my. With how easy it is to publish ebooks (or even paperbacks) nowadays, there are bound to be some bad ones among them! I do know the 'everyone is gorgeous' issue, it's the same for one of the books I'm reading right now...but at least they have the excuse of being not (fully) human, haha.
As to Geology...I know we had some of that in Geography class (which is simply called 'Erdkunde' in Germany, so 'study of the earth/ground', which, I guess, can mean both Geography and Geology. We didn't get to talk about pretty gems, though!