Welcome to today’s segment of Worst Read Wednesday! What better way to get through today than to hear my thoughts on one of the worst books I have ever read!
I like to consider myself a pretty optimistic reader. Typically, I am not one to judge books by covers, plot summaries, or other’s opinions. However, maybe I should have listened to some of the anti-hype this book received.
“I have been in love with Titus Oates for quite a while now–which is ridiculous, since he’s been dead for ninety years. But look at it this way. In ninety years I’ll be dead, too, and the age difference won’t matter.
Sym is not your average teenage girl. She is obsessed with the Antarctic and the brave, romantic figure of Captain Oates from Scott’s doomed expedition to the South Pole. In fact, Oates is the secret confidant to whom she spills all her hopes and fears.
But Sym’s uncle Victor is even more obsessed–and when he takes her on a dream trip into the bleak Antarctic wilderness, it turns into a nightmarish struggle for survival that will challenge everything she knows and loves.
In her first contemporary young adult novel, Carnegie Medalist and three-time Whitbread Award winner Geraldine McCaughrean delivers a spellbinding journey into the frozen heart of darkness.” –Goodreads summary
Upon reading this plot summary and the book flap, I immediately was intrigued. The whole adventure concept to the freezing barren Antarctic made me want to read the book as soon as possible.
While reading the book, I found Sym to possibly be the dumbest protagonist ever. An extremely good family friend, whom she calls Uncle Victor, plans this trip. Sounds endearing, right? Like myself, you’re wrong. Uncle Victor uses this trip as a way to seclude Sym from her mother and basically kidnap her in the Antarctic, and he continually performs multiple actions that demonstrate his extremely shady character.. While this concept initially seems interesting, the author did not explore this plot line very well. Rather, the author insisted on Sym standing by her Uncle Victor’s side. In fact, it was not until towards the very end of the novel that Sym rejected her Uncle Victor and came to her senses. I was and continue to be amazed. How and why would an author display such a dumb character? In the novel, the author made a point to portray Sym as freaskishly book-smart in regards to the Antarctic. She knew EVERYTHING there was to know about it, but her lack of common sense, especially with her Uncle Victor, completely goes against this intelligent facade created by the author.
In addition to poor character construction, the plot line was just as misconstrued and nonsensical. Sure, an author can integrate plot twists and surprises, but this author clearly did not know how to implement these in a professional or sensible manner. Rarely, do I ever have to reread passages multiple times for them to make sense to me, but The White Darkness made me reread, reread, and reread to the point where I just gave up reading many passages.
This book was such a disappointment. The overall plot created so much potential, but the author completely fell flat. Crash, boom, bang.
What are some of your worst reads? Let me know in the comments, and I may feature yours in the next Worst Reads Wednesday segment!