Tuesday, 14 June 2011

review: His Sweet Favour

by Diane Tucker
Thistledown Press, 2009
contemporary young adult
review copy received from publisher (thank you!)

Favour Wyatt's in her final year of high school, and she and her friends Maryruth, Brady, Rick and Leith already have a plan to start their own theatre company. But the foundations of their friendship are shaken from the very start of grade twelve: first, Leith announces he's been delivered a message by mysterious lights. Then Favour kisses Leith and doesn't hate it, much to his joy, and they begin dating seriously. And soon, Brady, Maryruth and Leith are involved in something almost cultlike, while Rick's developing empathic powers. Favour will have to figure out what to believe, and just what and who she is, to make it through.
The cover:

The whirling blond hair is very cool, and the title font and colouring is done well. What I don't get is the background. It kind of relates to the novel, but not really at the same time. I think my main issue with it is that it give enough a hint of the story.

The book:

I'd almost call His Sweet Favour an "issue book"; it touches upon several issues, but they're not the focus. It's Favour who the spotlight is on. She goes through a tumultuous year and her views on the world are changed several times, and as she goes through all this she grows strong. You just want to cheer her along when she acts to liberate herself.

That being said, none of the other characters come remotely close to Favour's likeability. Not cruel, domineering Brady, not limp Maryruth, not religiously obsessive Leith, not even the too-late-developed-to-like Rick. The adult characters are insanely abnormal to fit in. That's this book's biggest problem -- there are too many problems. It's just too hard to believe that anything involving a bipolar relationship, a mindreading cult and certain unexplained powers all in one novel.

His Sweet Favour is an intriguing journey of a girl at its best, but far too unrealistic and, though it does have some good imagery going for it, especially in the prologue, just plain weird.

Rating: 2.1 out of 5