Monday, August 8, 2011

My thoughts on the Tyme's End

Before I begin, let me just say that my affection for YA fictions had deteriorated ever since high school. Though I still read some of them from time to time, I always found it difficult to read through teenage adolescence. I'm not sure why. I think it's personal, but then again, maybe I got bored easily.

Tyme's End is written by B.R. Collins, who is very talented in story-telling. In fact, I think this book pretty much shows how much she shines in telling a story. I really like the pace of this book; the whole plot started from present day continuing to the past, the whole mystery revealed only towards the end of the book.

But this is certainly not a book I would have said worth my money. It is just- I'm not sure how to say it.... Not my cup of tea, perhaps?

When I picked this book up at Times (Suria Sabah), I admit the cover made me curious (against my better judgment about the whole "don't judge a book by its cover" stuff) and the synopsis is very interesting;
Bibi feels out of place wherever she goes - everywhere, that is, except for Tyme's End, the deserted house she breaks into whenever she thinks nobody is nearby.  There she meets Oliver, the owner, who has returned after ten years away.  Bibi's and Olivers's lives become inextricably linked as they are both pulled towards Tyme's End.  For Tyme's End is more than just a house.  It is a house that can be by turns romantic, beguiling, sinister and malevolent.  It is a house that once had an evil and manipulative owner.  And nobody who enters Tyme's End must prepare themselves for terror. 
What terror?

I found a lot of positive reviews for this book, as well as disappointed readers who wished the book hadn't been divided into three parts, who wished for the writer to just focus on the relationship between Bibi and Oliver and just get rid of the other two parts.

My problem with this book is not that it is divided into three parts, because I think the book is a lot more interesting that way. Instead, I found my problem lies with the characters. Actually, the whole reason for me not liking the book more is because of the characters.

In the first part of the book, we are reading through Bibi's POV. She is a sixteen years old girl who feels out of place everywhere she goes, except for Tyme's End. I have to say I'm very annoyed with her. I couldn't connect with Bibi at all despite all the emotions and tantrums she's throwing all around the pages. Her little crush on Oliver makes it much more unbearable for me to read that I have to force myself to finish the first part alone. Maybe it's because I cannot understand simple attraction, or maybe I cannot understand her need to keep thinking about wanting to get close to Oliver, touch Oliver, feel disappointed just because Oliver didn't keep holding her hand and such. I mean... Bibi is just so annoying. At least for me. And Oliver is boring too, despite the mysterious aura he keeps emanating, or Bibi thought he keeps emanating... But then I do some thinking and hey, Bibi is one lonely girl, and she sees another person who seems to be lonely. So I kinda understood the intimation between the both of them. So I conclude to myself that I just find the way Bibi looked at life is tedious and monotonous. If only if she has been witty like a certain Alfred Kropp, I don't feel Bibi and I are going to get along.

The second part is Oliver's POV. I enjoyed this part more than the first part. He's a troubled young boy desperate for the love of his estranged father who has an ongoing issue with his grandfather. He grew up being bitter in life, but gets along really well with his grandfather, whom he loved very much. But though I enjoyed the second part more because of the mystery about H.J. Martin begins to unravel, I find it very hard to sit through Oliver's POV. For one thing, he is as bitter as Bibi and pretty much irrational. Alright, let me knock myself on the head for writing that; since teenagers are supposed to be irrational most of the time. Sorry, should have thought about that. The whole point of YA novel is to appeal to the appointed age. But still, Oliver is pretty much like Bibi, in a sense he is not that much a different character from Bibi. But at least I don't fell asleep for every 2 minutes while reading the second part.

The third part is from Oliver's granddad's POV. The grandfather's name is also Oliver (maybe that's why I found a lot of people on the internet saying the book is confusing.. lol). OK, let me just say the third part is exactly what I have been expecting of this book. This is the only part of the whole book that I love. The other two I can appreciate, but to love the stories is beyond me. In the third part, I finally feel the suspense that I am supposed to feel in the first two parts (in which I spent most of my time being confused as to why they are important at all). Unlike Bibi and Oliver the grandson, Oliver is actually the more interesting and complicated character. I can feel his struggles and difficulties better than I could feel Bibi's and Oliver the grandson's, the two whom I thought spend most of their times being brats. Although Oliver is being a brat himself, at least his pain and confusion seemed genuine. I cannot understand why everyone lashed out the third part being the most boring of all. The third part should have consume the whole book. It is the only part and the only character I can feel for.

But another aspect of the book that disappoint me greatly is how little time is given to explain the mystery behind Tyme's End. I mean, yeah sure I understood about everything towards the end but come on, the ending is just- it just end so suddenly. The whole mystery is supposed to be about a manipulative, scheming man whom all I know of is that he did some kind of evil thing in the past and- well, just that. Just the whole thing on the cover and nothing more. So I lay myself down and do more thinking, so the author is trying to convey about how evil this guy is that his actions affect other people greatly. But I'm not satisfied with the way the story ended or the way the antagonist is handled. I want to know MORE about this evil traits he possessed. I don't want to just hear that he "did some evil things in the past" and a little hint or two about his evilness. His manipulative nature is vague at best. Yes he showed symptoms of a sociopath, but just in that one scene where he tortured a bug to dead. I mean, I'm not really convince of his "insanity", or of his evilness. Apparently I don't give a damn about the antagonist at all to even care about his behavior.

So I guess it is only fair for me to give this book 2 out of 4 stars.

2 comments:

  1. @Eric Her name is Olivia... (I think) hahahah I don't even care to remember aa... Bibi is her nickname :3

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