In the small town of Ealing, Iowa, Austin and his best friend, Robby, have accidentally unleashed an unstoppable army. An army of horny, hungry, six-foot-tall praying mantises that only want to do two things.
This is the truth. This is history. It’s the end of the world. And nobody knows anything about it. You know what I mean.
Funny, intense, complex, and brave, Grasshopper Jungle brilliantly weaves together everything from testicle-dissolving genetically modified corn to the struggles of recession-era, small-town America in this groundbreaking coming-of-age stunner.
©2014 Andrew Smith (P)2014 Penguin Audio
Be prepared for a horny teenage boy in this apocalyptic-coming-of-age story where our protagonist, Austin, is a history obsessed boy who is in love with his girlfriend and his best friend. Read the book description, it will tell you better. What I will tell you is this: 1) Read this book. Don't think about it, just do it. Cursing give you the willies? Get over it and read this book. 2) Be prepared for repetition - these are teenagers and they hear things in their heads over and over... and we're just along for the ride. 3) Laugh. Gasp. Think. and 4) Read everything else by Andrew Smith, just so you will know he's a fabulous author, but this book is so far above everything else - it's almost a little daunting.
My only drawback is listening to it - Philip Church has a pleasant voice, almost news-broadcaster-esque. It almost doesn't fit for this story, but at the end, I think I see why they chose him.
A different narrator
He sounded like my old Kindle Keyboard text-to-speech...monotone droning. I know everyone has their own style, and typically within 15-30 minutes I can get in the groove, but his performance kept getting worse and worse. His voices were like someone reading to a child...trying to elicit a giggle. He made the dad sound stupid (darp). I can't even explain how bad his voices were. Everyone in the book sounded like they were retarded. I tried, but I couldn't get past how bad his narration was.
I adore Andrew Smith. However, I couldn't force myself to finish this audiobook. I will get the Kindle version, and just read it.
The writing was smart and funny. Really great story.
Maybe if it was a reading of the phone book. Or a dictionary.
Read another book.
I wanted to like this book. I thought it was funny and unique spin on the teen apocalyptic genre--teens being teens while the world ended. Once I figured out what the unstoppable soldier was a metaphor for, the story dragged and wasn't funny anymore. It seemed mean. Also, there were so many jokes and talk about testicles that I thought I was stuck back in middle school. Ugh.
Complex character relationships andcompelling themes make for a satisfying story but it's all overshadowed by a tedious writing style, which, while comically dry and suitable, given the context, is too often repetitive and rambling. Edgar Wright's film adaptation will undoubtedly be better.
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