14 June, 2010

Finnikin of the Rock Rant

I read Finnikin of the Rock recently, and it drove me up the wall. I think I slammed the book against the chair a few times, too, although I didn't chuck across the room even though I REALLY (and I do mean REALLY) wanted to. Library property, after all. I almost disliked it as much as The Wings of a Falcon, which is probably one of my least favorite books.

Okay, let me elaborate. I'll give you a list.

A) Finnikin is a jerk! I hate protagonists who are 1. Self-centered (which he is.) He's so nasty when Evanjalin doesn't talk (although she's more enjoyable when her mouth is firmly shut.) 2. Backbone-less. (which he is in several cases) He can't stand up for anything! He's cowardly in some situations, and whines. 3. Arrogant. (which he is.) 4. Inconsiderate. (which he is.) Of everyone.

B) Evanjalin is much too self-righteous. 1. The saying "It's better to ask forgiveness than permission" works in some cases, but she doesn't even ask forgiveness. It's just "I'm the queen! Make way! I know the right way to do everything and if you don't agree, I'll poison you!" Literally. She murdered those people in the castle without any forethought, and it is possible that not EVERYONE was involved with the bad treatment of the citizens. The authors does not illuminate that possibility; it's just left in the dark like "The queen is always right!" 2. She complains that "We need strength, not courage" or some such thing. Finnikin (I'm not defending him exactly; just being objective) tries to save these people and she's complaining. She doesn't seem to care about anything except her own people! Sure, queens have their duties, but she's ruthless. Arrogant, like Finnikin. 3. She LIED TO EVERY FREAKING LUMATERAN. Yes, a kind of agree with her decision, but she could have done it differently. Really, she could have simply broken it to them that "Yes, Balthazar is dead, get over it. Move on. Let's rally Finnikin and make him king," or something a little less deceptive.

And there is a general lack of morality. Finnkin is a complete idiot with women, Evanjalin is a terrible, incompassionate queen, Finnikin's dad is strange, the dad's men are stranger, and the list goes on. Women are treated like dirt in this book. Or at least very badly. Raped by the soldiers stuck in Lumatere, beaten, cast off . . . it goes on. There are also prostitutes, etc., and they don't have any sense! I'm only going to defend the people with some backbone, so I have to say that the females in this book are useless. They accept the status quo without a protest except for the murdering queen. C'mon, girls, let's MOVE. Let's rally the troops and demand an ERA!

So no, I didn't like this book AT ALL except for the quality of the writing. Melina Marchetta is a good writer, but I hated the plot and characters. which are almost at least as important as quality. But I do like the cover. :P Yes, out of all the aspects of this book, perhaps it is the cover that I enjoy the most. It looks promising, and it's too bad it's for such miserable characters.

(Yes, this was rant-y. But I really, really did not like it.)

Finnikin of the Rock, exit stage right. Thank you.

-----The Golden Eagle


Caroline said...

Whoa. I've never heard of it, but it sounds like a stinker.

The Golden Eagle said...

It's a stinker all right. A lot of people seem to like it, but I don't. Obviously. :P

laughingwolf said...

the beauty of ALL bad books: they show you exactly what NOT to do :)

The Golden Eagle said...

True. They're very instructive in that line. :P