Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Engn by Simon Kewin

Why I read this book?

I received this book as part of the LybraryThing Early Review and here is my review.

What's the book about?

The book tells us the story of Finn, a boy who grew up in a peasant society with the fear of being taken to Engn, a frightening place, full of machines, dark spirited men and uncertain perspectives of ever coming out again. As a I child, Finn sworn to destroy the very heart of it if ever he was to be taken in. 

What was the thing I liked the most?

I enjoyed the relationships built in the book, Finn and his family, with the woman in charge of communications and with his best friends, Diane and Connor.

What about the main character?

Finn is a boy that has settled his mind in doing what he promised, always. While this is a very nice quality, he is also stubborn in his ways. It pays off, sure, but I felt like there was no growth of the character, he was always right, he did no wrong. He is also very loyal to the people he loves, and also very bright. He is a good character, but as I mentioned he is a bit one dimensional and that makes him predictable.

Final thoughts

A lot of people said this is a steam punk/dystopian book, but I'm not sure about the steam punk part; yes there are some machines mentioned, I mean the name of the book references engines, but the whole steam part was not that big (not to my eyes) I would call it more industrial than steam punk, and even so. I'm also not sure it is settled on Earth, because at a certain point they talk about 18 hours shifts and called it half a day. Not that the book was suposed to be on Earth, but it was just never fully explained...but that's just tiny details.

As for the story itself, I thought the premise was interesting, but the whole machine world was not exploited (in my opinion) it served more like a background; I kept thinking that a similar situation for the characters could've taken place without the machine idea. 

The end was ok, not very exciting and unfortunately presented a lot of questions that were never answered, questions that would've given the whole machine perspective a better "aftertaste" for me.

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