I’m not sure what prompted me to finally pick this book up. For what it’s worth, while I liked Spirited Away and LOVE My Neighbor Totoro (there’s a stage version starting in October for which I immediately bought tickets), I’ve found some of Miyazaki’s other work to be a bit inscrutable. While watching Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind in a pre-Japan-trip burst of energy, I…fell asleep.
That’s not to say that the adaptation of a book has much to do with the book itself, and honestly I’m not sure why I started with Miyazaki when I haven’t actually watched the movie adaptation of this book either…? Moving on, the point I was trying to make is that I’m not sure why I picked this up, although I did really want to love it. I’ve never read anything by Jones, despite her prolific output, and a part of me has always felt like a fraud of a young nerdy reader that I didn’t make my way through part of her output.
All in all I felt like this book was just a bit…all over the place. Jones clearly has a strong grasp on her world, but I found it hard to grab ahold of what was going on and whether the various parts were a coherent whole or more of vignettes. In that sense, it reminded me a lot of Spirited Away, which you have to sort of let wash over you as you tease out the plot. I see that it’s #1 in a larger series, but it doesn’t feel as such as I don’t really mind stopping after just this book. Perhaps it’s just something I should have read when I was a bit less rigid in my thinking 😉