Book Title: The Alex Crow (Standalone)
Author: Andrew Smith
Number of pages: 336
Skillfully blending multiple story strands that transcend time and place, award-winning Grasshopper Jungle author Andrew Smith chronicles the story of Ariel, a refugee who is the sole survivor of an attack on his small village. Now living with an adoptive family in Sunday, West Virginia, Ariel’s story is juxtaposed against those of a schizophrenic bomber and the diaries of a failed arctic expedition from the late nineteenth century . . . and a depressed, bionic reincarnated crow.
(re: Goodreads @ The Alex Crow – Andrew Smith)
Should this book be picked up? the tl;dr spoiler-less review:
— A multilayered story filled with stark humour, intrigue, and unhinging pathos to deliver a witty tip of the hat to a world run amok by testosterone
— Follows four perspectives, each with a different time period, style of writing, and tone. The juxtaposition in narratives doesn’t immediately pay off until later in the story
— A diverse, weird, satirical YA-read exploring boyhood through a migrant experience (Syria) to an American society of “boys being boys”
— Trigger warning: there are a lot of sexual innuendos to last a lifetime but they are completely in character. Teenage boys are keenly represented in this novel
— Rating: 3.8/5
I’m really unsure how to review a book like this. (I am also so, so sorry that it has taken this long to fully flesh out my thoughts considering this was an ARC I received for early review. Ahh.)
Full disclosure: I received an advanced reader copy of The Alex Crow through Goodreads First Reads. I extend thanks to Dutton Books via. Penguin Random House Canada for providing me the opportunity to review this book.
Disclaimer: Limited-to-no spoilers in this review (only to describe the basics of the premise). Other pertinent analyses holds no spoilers.