Thursday, 4 April 2019

Re-Imagining The Elements | The Dysasters (Review)

P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast have returned with a stormy read!

When I was getting back into reviewing post-hiatus, I took a little while to pick the books I wanted to review. After having read a bunch of books with seemingly tired or recycled concepts (for leisure), I was ready to pick something up that was unique. Something that was going to hold my attention and get me immersed from the get-go.

The Dysasters was my first pick.

When I read the blurb for The Dysasters, my inner Avatar the Last Airbender fangirl jumped for joy! The use of natural elements - water, earth, fire and air - in fiction is usually sporadic or secondary to the plot itself. But The Dysasters held the potential to reimagine the elements and produce a story that would be both inventive and captivating.

A big thank you to Pan Macmillan Australia for sending me this copy to review! The full review is down below - but if you'd like a quick summary of my thoughts, feel free to check out my Instagram post on The Dysasters for a mini review.

So without further ado...let's get into it!

The Dysasters
By P. C. Cast and Kristin Cast

Genre(s)Children's/Teenage Fantasy, Magical realism, YA

Publisher: Pan Macmillan Australia
Pub Date: 26th of February 2019
Page(s): 320
Price: $18.99 (AUD)

Rating3.9 out of 5 stars

Best part(s): My favourite part of The Dysasters was the use of illustrations to elevate the story itself. The comic-esque art style was entertaining and enjoyable - it never felt excessive or ill-placed. Every illustration had a purpose and helped to bring the characters and action of The Dysasters to life.

As I mentioned previously in my review intro, the concept of the elements is one that holds so much wealth when it comes to storytelling, if an author approaches it in the right way. And The Dysasters as a series seems to be on the path to creating a memorable team of characters with intriguing elemental capabilities.

I also really enjoyed that the main protagonists Foster and Tate didn’t always have the perfect witty comeback, or one-liner. Rather, they constantly floundered when it came to navigating conversations with one another - adding to the story’s sense of realism. The banter they did have was fairly comical and added a degree of levity between scenes of scientific information and the building of character interrelationships. Foster and Tate are not perfect characters, yet their flaws make them far more interesting and less like the typical YA caricatures of teenagers I'm used to reading about.

Least favourite part(s)The romance between Foster and Tate - although not terrible - felt a little speedy for my personal tastes. A slower build up would have been a great way to show their emotional development as characters and wouldn't have overshadowed the plot as much, or felt as forced. However - as I am assuming that each book in this series may be focused on one of the elemental 'pairs' - I understand that a single book may have been all that was able to be devoted to building up Foster and Tate's romance.

Apart from a few pacing issues here and there, The Dysasters was the kind of refreshing YA read that makes me excited for what P. C. Cast and Kristin Cast will come up with next.

Find out more about the book & add it to your Goodreads bookshelf today!

‘“The other pairs, they each have different abilities.”
Foster nodded. “Water, fire, and earth.”
“The Planeteers. We’re the Planeteers!” Tate’s eyes were so wide Foster half expected them to pop in and out of his head like in a cartoon.

Foster cocked her head. “You lost me.”

“Captain Planet,” Tate said matter-of-factly.
Foster clicked her tongue. “Nope, still lost.”’

If you could control any element what would it be? Will you be adding The Dysasters to your TBR?

Let me know in the comments below!

Although I was provided with a review copy by the author and/or publisher, all opinions expressed in this post are purely my own. To find out more, please visit my disclaimer page.

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