Pretty much everything here originally appeared at my actual blog: By Singing Light. I particularly focus on upper middle-grade and young adult books. I also enjoy adult genre books, especially speculative fiction.
This is a marvelous and deeply weird book–weird in the sense that I’m not sure if I actually liked it or not. The children of the LaZelle family are supposed to come into their power in their teens, but Gypsum alone of her siblings has reached her twenties with no power at all. She has determinedly made the best of this. But then she abruptly comes into quite a strong power, except that it’s a twisted power, a curse power. What follows is Gypsum’s attempt to come to terms with her own power and find her place in the family that had often ignored her.
It’s also, as I said deeply weird in ways I can’t explain because they would be spoilerific. Suffice it to say that some of what Gypsum has to reconcile is the deeper and darker parts of her own personality, and that the ways she does this are fairly unique. I loved the bits about the magic. On the other hand, some of the family dynamic made me uncomfortable and I can’t tell the degree to which this is intended. I’ll also mention that Gypsum is fat and fairly comfortable being fat, although I can’t really say how accurate or sensitive the portrayal is.