Come Tumbling Down by Seanan McGuire
Publication date: 01 February 2020
Page count: 208 pages
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
This is a spoiler-free review for Come Tumbling Down, but may contain spoilers for the other books in the series: Every Heart a Doorway, Down Among the Sticks and Bones, Beneath the Sugar Sky, and In an Absent Dream.
I have a funny relationship with the Wayward Children series — two of the books are my absolute favourite fantasy books, one I really hated, and another left me feeling very ‘meh’. I was very excited to read Come Tumbling Down, but also very cautious due to my mixed feelings on the series so far. Ultimately, this book was just fine, although I think I have now figured out what works and doesn’t work for me with this series.
When Jack left Eleanor West’s School for Wayward Children she was carrying the body of her deliciously deranged sister–whom she had recently murdered in a fit of righteous justice–back to their home on the Moors.
But death in their adopted world isn’t always as permanent as it is here, and when Jack is herself carried back into the school, it becomes clear that something has happened to her. Something terrible. Something of which only the maddest of scientists could conceive. Something only her friends are equipped to help her overcome.
Eleanor West’s “No Quests” rule is about to be broken.
I think that the main reason I didn’t on with Down Among the Sticks and Bones and felt ambivalent toward Come Tumbling Down is the fact that I just don’t get on with the Moors as a setting — something about it just doesn’t click with me, despite the fact that I should love it. As the settings of these books are such a vital part of the stories, Come Tumbling Down started off on a bad foot for me. However, I also think that the plot and story just didn’t connect with me either. As much as I love Jack and Jill as characters, I feel like they’ve not had justice done to them and their stories — I feel like there’s a lot of potential there that just isn’t reached for me — and I’m getting a bit bored of them.
I feel like this is a book that wont be memorable for me, which is such a shame given how deeply I love Every Heart a Doorway and In an Absent Dream. I’d love more fresh faces and stories — although I desperately want Christopher to get his own book — as well as new settings in this series. I think this may be why In an Absent Dream appealed to me so much — Lundy was a side character that got her own, individual tale and unique world and it just worked so well for me. I worry that at this rate, the Wayward Children series is going to get dull if we keep seeing the same people over and over again!
This is a short review, but I honestly just don’t have many thoughts on this book! It was very ‘meh’ for me and I hope McGuire manages to breathe new life into the series with the next book.
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