The Collaborators!: “Redwall” by Brian Jacques

Two posts in 24-ish hours … I can do this.

So, as I alluded in the last entry, I couldn’t get my act together / find a free copy of the sequel to Miss Peregrine’s in time to be able to Collaborate on that title.  As was custom, I asked Erica what was on her list (because she makes lists; I am waaaaaay more loose with what I decide to read.  If my reading habits were personified, I’d be a woman of ill repute.  or something), and this was on it.  And since Redwall has been around for ages, I felt confident I could pick up a copy at ye olde librarie.


And I could.  So I did.

Now, I had never read Redwall when I was younger.  I have distinct memories of one of my elementary school friends practically devouring the entire series (I wanna say, Pat in fifth grade?), but it never interested me.  In my formative years, I was reading Trixie Belden and Nancy Drew mysteries.  I was never interested in the Goosebumps series, and — I’ll let you in on a sad, terrifying secret — Harry Potter didn’t exist until I was in high school.  By the time I was in junior high, I was reading John Grisham and Alexandre Dumas.

That sounds like a weird combination; I know.  See, the Disney version of The Three Musketeers starring a young Chris O’Donnell as D’Artagnan, Kiefer Sutherland as Athos, Oliver Platt as Porthos, and a de-coked Charlie Sheen as Aramis had recently come out (or I was finally old enough to watch it), and in seventh grade, I found a copy of the unabridged text and tried to read it for a project.  I got a C+, because my teacher didn’t tell me to not read frickin’ Alexandre Dumas at the age of 13.

So I was never interested in Redwall.  And when Erica mentioned that, I pretty much said “That’ll work,” found a copy, and I’ll admit, I started reading it a week ago.

… It’s been rough.

And I’ll get into it more in my review, but I was very wary of continuing with it.  I mean, I knew I had to, for two reasons: 1) It’s a freaking Collaboration, one cannot Collaborate by oneself; and 2) only four entries ago I proclaimed that I would never again not finish a book.  Even I don’t stand for those levels of hypocrisy.

Okay, so now comes the part of the night where I read Erica’s pre-review and see what else I have to say about it …

Anywho, this year we just might come close to 20 books that we collaboratively review! She might disagree but I think if we push each other it can totally happen!

SLOW YOUR ROLL, KID.  Let’s be real for a second: I barely read 27 books last year.  That includes the three we Collaborated on before December 31.  And you want to push each other to twenty??  That’s over two a month between now and the end of the year!  And this one is coming to fruition in February!  Let’s compromise and shoot for a dozen, while knowing that if we can get to ten we’ve done pretty damn well.

(Also, I get to pick at least half of those.  Fair’s fair.)

Yes, I was able to get my copy very easily at the library.  And allow me to step on a soapbox to all my readers for a moment: the library is a wonderful, wonderful thing.  It is free (unless you’re a horrible person like me and forget to renew your books and/or can’t finish them in the time allotted and/or are really like me and check out six books at a time totally forgetting that you work fifty hours a week and are really only awake at home for four hours a night before needing to go to bed and there is no WAY you can read six substantial novels in three weeks, I mean seriously Alaina, how stupid are you sometimes), there should be one in every town, and if they don’t happen to have a book you’re looking for, they can get it from another library.

I am extremely lucky in that the parking garage where I now own a parking space (that is not free, lemme tell ya) is directly across from the main branch of the Portland Public Library.  Tonight, on my way to my car, I detoured across the street and returned Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.  Next week, I hope to return Redwall and the graphic novels of Buffy: Season 8 I picked up (because after I found out who dies, there was no way I was buying the comics… *SNIFF*), and then eventually I’ll continue my horrible habit of having five books out at a time and only reading one of them.

If a book I want is in another branch, I can request it and they will send it to the branch of my choice, so I don’t have to go out of my way.  If I’m searching for something through Interlibrary Loan, I think I have less time to read it, but it’s still free.  They have DVDs, and audiobooks, and free computers, and tons of non-fiction, and … the library is awesome, okay?  I fricking love libraries.  I want to have one of my own someday.

Okay, that was a much taller soapbox than I anticipated.  ANYWAY.  (drink!)  I’m nearly halfway done with Redwall, I hope to finish it over the weekend (in-between some TableTop-ing with friends and a Hannibal: season 1 rewatch [OH GOD IT COMES BACK THREE WEEKS FROM TOMORROW AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH I AM NOT PREPARED]), and then will be more historical fiction for some reason, and then I might make Erica read a trashy romance novel for our next Collaboration.

(just checking to make sure you read this!)


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