Thursday, July 27, 2017

Of Monkey Kings, Giant All-Powerful Boom-Sticks and High School: Macky Reads The Epic Crush of Genie Lo

The Epic Crush of Genie Lo book cover
WHAT. A. RIDE. Seriously. Fast-paced, funny, well-written action fantasy with a very distinct cultural twist! I mean, my knowledge of Chinese legends is sparse, to say the least, but The Epic Crush of Genie Lo is to said legends the way Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson series is to Greek mythology. However, it's less middle-grade and more YA.

Let’s start with the writing style. It’s so well-paced and the voice is so clear and real that you may as well be IM-ing with Genie throughout the whole book. She just comes alive, large and in charge. (See what I did there, people who have read this book?)

I was expecting your typical badass teenage girl kickassery, so when I read the author’s preface about the Monkey King goes west, I’m like, hold up, I don’t see no Monkey King on this cover? But he’s in there, and boy, oh boy, is this tale amazing. It doesn’t make it about Chinese myth and legend, nor is it about Chinese-American culture (which I know very little about, what with not being Chinese American), but I can recognize some, if not all the odes to these cultural nuances.

Again, I want to ask someone who’s actually Chinese-American and more than familiar with the themes, tropes and stories in this book to see if it adds to the experience or takes away from it. Because I’ll tell you right now, this book is pure awesomeness. I rarely add people to my favorite characters list. I don’t like letting people in though I’m not above admiring new characters.

But Genie Lo? Criminey, but she is nine kinds of awesome. And this writer F. C. Yee! Promised some brilliant face wrecking action and boy, did this book deliver. I need book two now please. The world needs it! (In fact, I would sit through a 13 to 22 episode Netflix or TV series adaptation of this book, just because it’s that good and there’s just that much to work with.)

The Epic Crush of Genie Lo comes out August 8, 2017 and I highly recommend you go out and get it when it's released. Funny, action packed, brilliant storytelling at its finest!


Publisher: Amulet Books | Publication Date: August 8, 2017
Source: ARC received at BEA 2017 (Thanks!)

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