Title: Crewel (Crewel World #1) by Gennifer Albin
Release Date: October 16th 2012
Published by: AudioGO
Summary (from Goodreads):
For generations, girls known as Spinsters have been called by Arras' Manipulation Services to work the looms and control what people eat, where they live, how many children they have, and even when they die. Gifted with the unusual ability to weave time with matter, sixteen-year-old Adelice Lewys is exactly what the Guild is looking for, and in the world of Arras, being chosen as a Spinster is everything a girl could want. It means privilege, eternal beauty, and being something other than a secretary. It also means the power to embroider the very fabric of life. But Adelice isn't interested. Because once you become a Spinster, there's no turning back.
This is my first audiobook and I admit, I am a novice at this and in no way knowledgeable about anything technical I should be looking out for in audiobooks or its reader, but Amanda Dolan did such a great job giving life to this book. Crewel, in itself is an interesting story but the way Amanda gave life to all these different characters, the way they speak and act, just made the story all the more interesting. Her voice helped me get immersed in the story even more as a reader. Not only does she sound really nice, she made the story even more engaging than it already is. When she changes her voice to switch to a new character, it's a wonder how she's able to give life and emotions to so many different people, to sound distinctly different each time she lends her voice to another person. Oftentimes, I'm in awe.
The concept of Crewel is very interesting, and that is what made me want to read this book. To have an alternate world built on top of the ruins of once was a place called Earth, it takes quite a rich and imaginative mind to think of something like this. A strong world building was combined with countless of conflicts left and right and Crewel can sometimes be overwhelming. I love that on top of one girl's story and her struggle to escape the destiny everyone is forcing on her, there's room left for complicated politics, sabotage, encounters with vicious people who would do anything to be on top, and sometimes, downright cruelty. There's a strong aversion to people who deviate in any way in Arras, and the kind of action the Council will take in order to keep people conforming to the rules leaves me wide eyed. The reality involved in making such a world often takes me aback, knowing just how much was sacrificed and how much was being taken for the world to be in order. Adelice's struggle to become a Creweler was what made me so absorbed and occupied with the story. I do think she's a great character, one with beliefs that couldn't be easily swayed and with things she needs to fight for, persistence, and eventually grows stronger with each hurdle she passes through as a Spinster. Sometimes I wonder if I should take pity on her, or if I should wring her neck for being so stubborn, or be sad for her for losing her family. Nothing in her life was easy, with the power she has and for being thrust into such a complicated world.
The main conflicts this audiobook presents was enough to keep me occupied, but I am so very conflicted with the love triangle in this novel. Though both Eric and Jost care for Adelice, I can't help but feel how can they both be trusted, if they can be at all. Adelice herself has felt insecure often because of the different circumstances surrounding both boys' lives, especially Jost's, which makes me feel that maybe she deserves someone else. Someone less bitter about life, someone less vengeful, someone she can grow with together. Jost has experienced a loss that was similar yet so different to Adelice. The fact that he's so grown up makes me feel like Adelice is on over her head if she stays with him. It's even harder to discern if Adelice is better off with Eric, because he's too wrapped up in mystery, too many secrets still surrounding him that half of the time I wonder if he's really a friend or an enemy. This is one part of the story where I am eager to know how Adelice will tackle.
Crewel is a highly imaginative novel, one that isn't afraid to tackle challenging issues that one usually doesn't see in a YA romance novel (Enora's story). Arras, the world where Crewel is set in, was very patriarchal, a world where women are viewed in a lesser way than men, and this alone opens up this novel to a lot of debates. It's a harsh world, with frightful, disgusting sides to it, and a girl was put amidst this place to see it all. With a strong heroine struggling to make sense of a world that has looked different in her eyes all her life, Crewel has a potent story that will gradually engulf readers with its inventive plot and fascinating world. There's a beauty in reading such a complicated world and trying to make sense of everything happening to it all at once. Highly readable, enjoyable and engaging, I highly recommend this audiobook for fans of YA fantasy looking for something new and different.
"How do you close opened eyes?"
"Like you do at night. You worked the loom until you're too tired to go on. And then your eyes close naturally."
- Adelice asking the Crewel how she was able resist touching the opened seam in the screen, revealing what's underneath it, the true appearance of everything around them.
"We don't do it for them."
"No, we do it in spite of them."
- Weaving for Arras
"Some things shouldn't be forgotten."
"Remembrance is never useless."
Content (plot, story flow, character):
Content (plot, story flow, character):
What a book to usher me into the world of audiobooks. I really enjoyed every moment of listening to this wonderful story.
Stunning: Worthy of a Goddess' Praise!