Saturday, 18 June 2016

Relax, I'm a Ninja by Natalie Whipple|| #reviewfriday

I love ninjas. I love their garb, their dark uniforms, their gleaming swords and their never ending bag of tricks. So, when I saw a Ninja story and not just any Ninja story, but one that had demonical aspect of it(you'll get the pun, when you read the book), I jumped on the chance to read it. Relax, I'm a Ninja is an young adult paranormal romance(don't know if I can classify it like that), written from the male protagonist's point of view.

First off, I have to give you a warning. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo had set a new standard for me. That book was a subtle tornado. The writing was subtle, but the emotions evoked were powerful. And I will try my best to judge this book without comparing it to that one, because that will be totally unfair, seeing how it is set in two different worlds.

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Seeing as I'm more a fan of discussing a book, than writing a review, I will write it in bullet points. That way it's better for everyone. If you want to ask anything specific about the book, then drop me a comment and I will reply back.

Title: Relax, I'm a Ninja

Author:Natalie Whipple

Genre: Y.A, fantasy, Asian martial arts

Blurb: A Clan of ninjas in San Francisco may sound improbable—but as the son of a ninja master, Tosh Ito knows what lurks in the shadows of his city. Or at least he thought he did.

When a killer with a poisoned blade starts cutting down teens, Tosh enlists Amy Sato—newest ninja recruit and his best friend’s crush—and sets out to uncover the killer’s identity. What they find is ninjutsu more evil than they could have ever imagined.

As Amy and Tosh grow closer, they discover their connection unleashes a legendary power that could stop the murders. Problem is, that power may be exactly what the killer is looking for, and wielding it could cost them both their souls.
  • I loved how well Tosh was written. For a female author to pull off writing in first person a teenage boy's story is not that easy. So kudos to Natalie.
  • This is more of a corollary of the first point. Tosh goes from seeing Amy as his best friends crush to falling for her hard. The way he thinks about her at first, the emerging feelings, getting over his long term crush and falling for Amy, all of it was realistically portrayed. Even though there were a few places where I doubted whether I was in a teenage boy's head, for most of the time, I felt like I was reading about a real person.
  • Amy-the female protagonist: she is not flawless, she is not a pushover and she is definitely not one to stand back when some other girl makes grabby hands at Tosh. Her impulsive and competitive nature, her shyness, her jealousy, I could see it all even when it was written from Tosh's point of view.
  • The plot twists were clever and well placed. The last one didn't come off as a big surprise, probably because the author didn't want to make it a big surprise. Overall, I liked the pacing of the book. 
  • The secondary characters, the friends as well as adults were well fleshed out. In most of the Y.A books, they are absent or even if they are present, are mostly cardboard cutouts. The book was a welcome diversion from that.
  • Now let's talk about my favorite part- Book cover. I liked the book cover because of the fonts. It was big, bold and looked like glowing brush strokes. I don't know whether it was intentional, but the glow is an important part of the book. That said, if it wasn't for the title, I probably would have skipped the book. Because a guy in a hoodie, no matter how mysterious is not the cover I would expect for a fantasy ninja book.
So, do I think it's worth the time?
Yes, it was. And I recommend it for those who love Ninjas, nerds and male P.O.Vs.


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