Challenge 48 ~ “A book set somewhere you’ve always wanted to visit.”
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
This, for me, was the least challenging challenge of them all – ‘somewhere you want to visit’ translates as more of ‘anywhere – past, present, future, alien etc.’ So, why this book out of them all? Do I have an unquenchable passion to visit India? After reading I certainly have a desire to visit there, but I can’t say it’s the place I would go if I only had one more day on Earth. I’ll admit, I originally chose this novel for the book that makes you cry – a much harder challenge on this year’s list. I’ve only cried at two books in my life (which, as a bookworm, is a statement and a half), namely Oblivion by Anthony Horowitz and the prequel to Jasmine Skies, Artichoke Hearts. And whilst I was happy to state this as my reasoning for fitting this into that category, I soon found that the next book I read (I Was Here by Gayle Forman) brought me so close to tears that it was much more fitting.
So, a (-n excessively long) paragraph in, and I haven’t told you anything about the book. Well, it was an enjoyable read, and it certainly kindled a love for India. Brahmachari’s descriptions played to all of the senses, kindling an acute awareness of the stunning and awe-inducing atmosphere in which the action took place. That being said, there were occasions in the more unfamiliar settings where basic descriptions would have been of greater assistance (particularly as someone who’s never visited Asia!) If I had to request one section of the novel to be re-written, I would certainly pick the beginning as Brahmachari introduces so many characters that it becomes a little overwhelming (especially when the reader is still trying to re-accustom themselves with the characters from the previous novel.)
Jasmine Skies is a pleasant enough story, full of incredible environments and atmospheres, which boost the strong characters through the tale. It provides an unusual story, highlighting the joys of experiencing life in another country, and even works a pretty clichéd side story into an enjoyable plotline. Whilst it is part of a series, it can easily be read as a stand-alone, and has something to offer even those at the more mature end of the young adult genre.
Recommended for fans of:
- Artichoke Hearts by Sita Brahmachari
- Love, Audrey by Suzanne LaFleur
- The Cat Ate My Gymsuit by Paula Danziger