Thursday, March 5, 2020

Mini-Review: Hearts of Oak by Eddie Robson

Hearts of OakHearts of Oak by Eddie Robson
Publication: March 17th, 2020
Paperback. 272 pages.

About Hearts of Oak:
"The buildings grow. 

And the city expands. 

And the people of the land are starting to behave abnormally. 

Or perhaps they’ve always behaved that way, and it’s normality that’s at fault. 

And the king of the land confers with his best friend, who happens to be his closest advisor, who also happens to be a talking cat. But that’s all perfectly natural and not at all weird. 

And when chief architect Iona wakes from a long period of blindly accepting the status quo, she realizes there’s a mystery to be solved. A strange, somewhat bizarre mystery, to be sure, but no less dangerous for its improbability. 

And the cat is almost certainly involved!"

Ordinarily I would write a full review this book, but while reading Hearts of Oak I soon realized that this is one of those books that relies so heavily on the unknown that I actually want to keep this fairly brief so that I don't give much of anything away. (Also, I'd just like to say that I was mostly interested in this premise, but when I got to the line of "And the cat is most certainly involved!" in the synopsis, I was completely sold--and it was totally worth it.)

What I liked: Hearts of Oak is full of surprises and I swear I felt like I was getting whiplash at times from how much this book kept pulling out new twists and ideas that kept me so engaged. I was constantly curious because you can sort of tell that certain things are off, but it's hard at times to pinpoint exactly what until it's about to happen or it actually happens and then things start to unravel in such a fascinating way. I also really loved how subtle the themes were in this book--they're important and strong, but they aren't thrown into your face in an overwhelming way, which I really appreciated.

I also really loved how quirky this book was. It's not over-the-top strange or anything like that, but there are so many subtly odd things that really made this book stand out and also made me love the style of writing. The setting itself is one of the weirdly quirky things that was of particular interest to me and I found it fascinating how this society seemed to work.

What I didn't like: I wouldn't really say that there's anything I really disliked about this book, but there were some areas that could have used some improvement. The characters were mostly interesting and well-developed, but I feel like there could have been a bit more to them and their personalities--including secondary characters--to bring them to life and make me care about them just a little bit more.

Overall, I've given Hearts of Oak four stars! I apologize for this review being so vague, but I really don't want to give a single thing away. I absolutely recommend this if you're looking for something fresh and quirky with a plot that will continuously keep you on your toes!

1 comment:

  1. I'm glad you left your review vague, because I love going in sort of blind. I may read this next!