Nothing proved to me how subjective this business is until I read and loved IMAGINARY GIRLS by Nova Ren Suma and then read the reviews on Amazon and Goodreads.
I mean I loved this book. Gorgeous prose and a voice that pulled me through the book. A combination of creepy, paranormal, and mystery.
And no one denies any of that in the reviews.
The biggest complaint is that the magic or paranormal aspect in the book was never explained. The term plot holes was used.
Some said the characters weren’t likeable. Ruby and Chloe (the narrator) were not good role models. #itotallydisagreed #lovedthem
Some said by the end they realized there was no point to the story.
Harsh? Right? I would argue against all those points!
Please don’t let that deter you from reading. I think the story was misunderstood. And it helped that before reading, I knew some things wouldn’t be explained. I was prepared.
As I see it, this story was a tall tale. A myth. A metaphor for the love of two sisters who have a crappy life. The older sister Ruby seems to have a magical hold on the town and on her sister, Chloe. But when you understand that these two girls are half-sisters whose dads aren’t in their lives and their mom is a drunk? They basically raised themselves. It’s a bit easier to understand their eccentric behavior.
In a tall tale the unexplained happens all due to the power of an emotion. It’s not meant to be explained. That would detract from the magic. Ruby comes to the conclusion that her sister is able to bend the rules of physics because of their bond, their love for each other. And for the magic to be explained and there to be a believable explanation for what happens with the dead body and why the whole town bends to Ruby’s desires would detract from the whole point of the story.
Love is powerful.
You can disagree. But don’t the let the reviews deter you from this delicious book. There were plenty of five star ratings too. Honestly? It’s this kind of writing and story that separates the traditional published and the self-published. For me.
Do low-starred reviews deter your from buying a book? Do you ever find a discrepancy based on subjectivity?