Thursday, July 3, 2014

Review: Earth Girl

Earth Girl by Janet Edwards
Earth Girl #1
Publisher: Pyr, Prometheus Books
Release Date: March 5th, 2013
Source: Library
Date Read: 6/26/14 to 7/2/14
271 Pages
Rating: 

2788. Only the handicapped live on Earth. Eighteen-year-old Jarra is among the one in a thousand people born with an immune system that cannot survive on other planets. Sent to Earth at birth to save her life, she has been abandoned by her parents. She can’t travel to other worlds, but she can watch their vids, and she knows all the jokes they make. She’s an “ape,” a “throwback,” but this is one ape girl who won’t give in.

Jarra makes up a fake military background for herself and joins a class of norms who are on Earth for a year of practical history studies excavating the dangerous ruins of the old cities. She wants to see their faces when they find out they’ve been fooled into thinking an ape girl was a norm. She isn’t expecting to make friends with the enemy, to risk her life to save norms, or to fall in love.

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I heard about Earth Girl from a couple of bloggers, and I saw it available at the library, so I thought to myself "Well, why not". I loved the idea about portaling off worlds from the blurb, and discrimination between the Handicapped and everyone else. Just the whole concept was so unique and intriguing, plus my love for sci-fi is out of this world (hahaha, haha.....ha).

Earth Girl came off as a novel in journal format, though it never explicitly said it was. But I just figured, since we had access to all of our main character's thoughts, Jarra. Jarra is handicapped, and she can't portal (teleport basically) to other colonized worlds because every time she does, she ends up...um, I think fried, or just pretty much dead. In other words, her immune system can't handle what's on the other worlds. So she's stuck on Earth, until they come up with a "cure". There are many others like her, which make up most of Earth's inhabitants at this point. They are discriminated against because they're stuck there, and are constantly referred to "apes".

Jarra, being sick of this, comes up with a plan. Instead of enrolling in an Earth University for a Foundation History course, she enrolls in an Asgard University (another planet's university). Now you must be thinking, "What, but she can't go off planet???" and yes you're right. But all pre-history courses take place on Earth, because this is where pre-history actually took place. In doing this, Jarra can prove to all the others that they were taking a course with an ape, and then laugh at their faces! But to do this, she needs a fake identity.

And here we're introduced to Jarra the Military girl!

This amuses me way too much

The world-building is what really pulled this novel together. The author really put in a lot of detail, especially with the people coming in from different planets. Even though we never technically visit these planets, I could see the different characteristics of each world based on the side characters in the book. The only downside to this is that there is new info on every page, along with the whole lectures and classes on dig sites and history. Yes, the dig sites that the class goes on is another huge topic of the book. Jarra and her team pretty much spends their time "tagging" rocks to be lifted and carried away, in order to uncover the secrets of New York Main, otherwise known as New York City. The terminology of all of this is somewhat dense (especially with that small font, ugh). Some of it may have went over my head. It also kind of reminded me of the battle systems in Ender's Game, combined with Jenga!

Another note, there is some funny made up slang terms used as well. Like "That's totally zan!", or "nuke it", or "I was completely grazzed". When I first saw this, I was literally laughing out loud, because it just sounded too cheesy.

I just, I just can't with this. It took me awhile to get used to.

Character-wise, I did like Jarra. And also her romantic partner Fian, who I didn't have a strong connection with. Fortunately, it was not insta-love, but more of a forbidden love for Jarra, because she's Handicapped and discriminated, and also lying about it to everyone in her class. Throughout the beginning of the novel, she knows this, and tries to keep her distance from his advances. But then, her lies and reality start to mess with her head, and she starts believing that she really is a Military kid. Honestly, this even started to confuse me as well, because she acted like she could portal off-world, and she acted like she had parents, etc.

Earth Girl is definitely a great sci-fi YA novel, especially for those that don't mind the constant flow of information throughout the book. I thoroughly enjoyed it, even though it mainly focused on the history and its terminology. Looking forward to the next two books in the series. I hope I'm not disappointed! (Though the next one is about aliens, I wonder how the author will pull that off.)

10 comments:

  1. Glad you liked this one, Valerie! I remember giving this one 4 stars because I enjoyed it as well, despite the HUUUGE info-dumping every other page (I'm exaggerating, of course, but I'm not kidding with the info-dumping. There were too many!). I didn't have a strong connection with Fian, too. He seemed so boring to me, and in the next book, he became even too boring >_< The latter part of her being convinced of her lies was kind of confusing to me as well, and felt kinda forced, but eh, I went along with that.

    When are you reading the next book? I hope you like it more than I did, as I gave that one a 1 star haha.

    Faye at The Social Potato

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    1. THE INFO DUMPING. The book I borrowed had incredible small font. So I felt like I was straining my eyes the entire time, and my eyesight is bad enough!

      I saw the next book at the library too, so I may pick it up later. Although I do have a lot of other books on my summer TBR list haha. I swear if there's small font in the next book too...ugh.

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  2. Ohhh, I need this one. I NEED IT RIGHT NOW. I like sci-fi and I honestly haven't read nearly enough. I love the premise of this too...and also the #fabulous gif. Omg, why have I not seen that gif before?? Day = made. Thanks, Ender.

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    1. Haha yes you should read it! It's quite good, though lots of information. AND I KNOW THAT GIF. Isn't it fabulous lol.

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  3. I have this one to read - a signed copy as I met Janet at a sci-fi con last year. Funnily enough I didn't really know too much detail about it til I read your review, and now it looks like another one I'm going to have to read whilst I can before I go off to uni. Too much to read, not enough time! :P

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    1. WOW a signed copy! I would like a signed copy of anything to be honest hahaha. Yes but definitely read it when you have time on your hands!

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  4. I love the cover!!! And I have no idea why I didn't heard about this before.

    The plot looks interesting and I love that you mentioned that it's not Instalove. (a reason to read it) i really need some SciFi on my shelf. The MC sounds awesome too. I wonder how many books there is in this series.

    Great review, Val! :)

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    1. Thanks Paula! I love it when it's not instalove too haha!

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  5. Eep, so glad that you liked this! I loved how it sounded so much I went and bought my own copy last year, but never got around to reading it, in typical procrastinator fashion. :P One of the things holding me back was the amount of mixed reviews this book got, but I think your review pretty much has me convinced by now.

    This has good world building -- finally! A lot of the books I read this month had shaky worlds that weren't TERRIBLE, but weren't mind-blowing either, which kind of bugged me. Yet another reason I'm looking forward more to Earth Girl now. It's so nice when an author is able to build the world up so much and with so much detail while not going all info-dumpy, too.

    Lol at those slang words, though. At least they weren't annoying. One book in particular comes to mind whenever I hear "made-up" slang words, and that book is The Murder Complex by Lindsay Cummings. The author apparently had a problem with actual cussing, so she substituted swear words like "shit" with "skitz," or "f*ck" for "flux." I mean, I don't have anything wrong with books that have no swear words, but this just got plain annoying and ridiculous. So glad that wasn't the case here, even if it WAS a little cheesy. (That's totally zan? Seriously?! xD)

    Thank goodness the romance didn't suck. I'm usually okay with only mediocre romance, just as long as it doesn't have instalove or any of those other stupid tropes like super dramatic relationships. But of course, it's always a plus when you actually like the love interest as well.

    Fantastic review, Val! Can't wait to start reading this soon. :)

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    1. Ooo I haven't looked at other reviews for Earth Girl yet, though I'm excited to now. I can see how it got mixed reviews, like character wise, but I think that's it. I thought the world-building was great, and although maybe some readers can't handle new info on almost every page, but I know sci-fi fans would definitely enjoy it.

      SLANG WORDS. This is really bad, but I'm starting to lean towards saying "This is amaz" instead of amazing. Like why. It's stuck with me. Forever. But "flux"? What. That also means "flux of information" or something hahaha.

      Yeah it wasn't instalove thank god. It was just, well, a romance. I mean without it, I think it wouldn't have been as good just because it adds to the plot. But it didn't give me THE FEELZ or anything.

      Thanks for the awesome and long comment Megan!!!! I'm looking forward to your own review on it!

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