Review: Crewel by Gennifer Albin

Gennifer Albin
Series: Crewel World, #1
Release Date: October 16th, 2012
Publisher: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux
Number of Pages: 368
Source: NetGalley
Rating: 4 of 5 stars

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Incapable. Awkward. Artless.

That’s what the other girls whisper behind her back. But sixteen year-old Adelice Lewys has a secret: she wants to fail.

Gifted with the ability to weave time with matter, she’s exactly what the Guild is looking for, and in the world of Arras, being chosen as a Spinster is everything a girl could want. It means privilege, eternal beauty, and being something other than a secretary. It also means the power to embroider the very fabric of life. But if controlling what people eat, where they live and how many children they have is the price of having it all, Adelice isn’t interested.

Not that her feelings matter, because she slipped and wove a moment at testing, and they’re coming for her—tonight.

Now she has one hour to eat her mom’s overcooked pot roast. One hour to listen to her sister’s academy gossip and laugh at her Dad’s stupid jokes. One hour to pretend everything’s okay. And one hour to escape.

Because once you become a Spinster, there’s no turning back.
Well, this is going to be a difficult review to write. Trust me, if I could, my entire review would comprise of a bunch of gifs depicting happy dances, like so:

And no, I don't know what that last gif is exactly. Sure, it might be irrelevant, but what I do know is that it's a woman in a crab costume and it's staying.

Now, where was I? Oh yeah, how if I could my entire review would be of gifs, but apparently, that's not a "proper" review, because it doesn't have to do with the contents of the book. Hmph. Well then! Here goes my attempt at writing a review for Crewel, but don't say I didn't warn you: it will be a jumbled mess. (Just go to the bottom of this review for a much shorter evaluation on my thoughts of this book.)

It's been almost a full day since I finished reading Crewel, and I have no clue as to how I'm going to put my thoughts of it into words, or even describe the book in any way. I could write my own synopsis for Crewel, like I normally would at this point in the review, but,

1) I'm afraid of giving away too much, and would like anyone interested in reading Crewel to go into it knowing as little as possible;

and 2) I honestly have no freaking clue how I could possibly write a synopsis for this book.

What I can say, however, is that the basic plot for Crewel is absolutely brilliant, and that this book is one of the most original and creative books I've ever read in my life, and definitely the most original and creative book I've read this year. You can tell that Albin clearly put a lot of thought into what she wanted Crewel to be, and the world in which Crewel takes place is breathtakingly detailed and captivating.

Along with the flawless world building and the sheer originality (something we as readers, unfortunately, don't find very often in YA), the characters are all very likable and flawed (and, therefore, believable), and the Albin's writing is stunning and gorgeous. Back to the characters in Crewel: we're immediately introduced to our protagonist, Adelice. While Adelice is not the smartest, strongest, or all around best protagonist you'll ever read about, she's still a very likable character, and she is very easy to sympathize with. And while she is a bit naive when it comes to boys, it was understandable considering she was raised in a sector of the world where people were segregated by gender.

And, since we're on the topic of boys and Adelice's naivete towards them, then I might as well say it right now, that yes: there is a love triangle, and this is the main - if not only - reason Crewel is receiving four stars from me as opposed to five. I really have zero tolerance for love triangles now, since they appear so, so often in YA, and I especially have no tolerance when there's the one person in the love triangle the indecisive teenager is obviously going to end up with, and then there's the other one, who really only exists to add stress to the main relationship. And, adding to that, I just didn't find anything special about the two love interests in Crewel, and in the end, I have a blurred opinion on both of them.

However, despite the unfortunate and predictable love triangle, I found Crewel to be a thoroughly interesting and brilliant debut, with an ending that is sure to provide an even better sequel. While it's not a perfect novel, it was just what I needed to rid me of my crappy book streak, and I loved it.

And now, for those of you who didn't want to go through the inevitable torture that you'd be put through if you read my mess of a review (or, if you've read the review and are now reading this, for which I applaud you in making it this far), here's the much shorter evaluation on my thoughts of Crewel:


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