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Saturday, November 3, 2012

Audio Review: Switched by Amanda Hocking (Spoilers)

Posted by Irish in Review6 Comments

Publisher: Brilliance Audio (Audio); St Martins (Print)

Source: Publisher
Publication Date: 03 Jan 2012 (Audio); 03 Jan 2012 (Print)
Series or Standalone: Series
ISBN: 1455857637 (Audio), 1250006317(Print)
Format: Audio
Audio Length: ~8.5 hrs
Narrator: Therese Plummer

The Author on the Web:
Amanda Hocking – Official Site

Place(s) Traveled to: Forening, Minnesota

Rating: 1 out of 5 stars

First Line: A few things made that day stand out more than any other: it was my sixth birthday, and my mother was wielding a knife.

Buy the Book:  

Trylle Series Order

Book 1: Switched
Bonus Story: The Vittra Attacks

Book 2: Torn
Book 3: Ascend

This review contains some spoilers. Read at your own risk. 

I was torn about picking up Switched by Amanda Hocking as there was so much hype surrounding it. More often than not over-hyped books and I just don’t get along and this was the case with Switched. This is yet another book where I don’t understand the hype that surrounds it. It was poorly written with a highly unlikable main character and then there is the premise… changeling trolls. Trolls? Seriously? Ok, I get that this is an entirely new take in the paranormal world and I should embrace or something but I just didn’t buy it. 

Maybe I just didn’t get how the trolls could change out their children for human ones as they were too lazy or what have to raise their kids but they keep the human children and raise them? Then use those children as their servants and other laborers when they are adults? I just could barely contain my eye rolling through much of this audio whenever the troll culture was discussed.

Then there is the main character, Wendy, all she seems to do is mope about she and doesn’t really care about anyone or anything. Well, with except a dark and mysterious boy who she is also forbidden to date. And when said boy is removed from picture she mopes some more and doesn’t care if she lives or dies. blah blah blah. Whine whine whine. I also really didn’t like how every time she asked a question of someone the usual answer was along the lines of “you’ll learn that later.” Then something would happen, which would go back to one of her unanswered questions and she would get yelled at for not knowing. 

For the life of me I don’t know how I managed to listen to this book all the way through until the end. I think the only real positive thing that I could say about this audio was that the narrator, Therese Plummer, was good. She did a good job with all the voices and did the best she could with horrible material. While I don’t think I’ll ever read another Amanda Hocking book I will be willing to check out this narrator again. My only real complaint about her narration is that she reads the story a little too slowly and takes some long pauses during her reading. 

The Vittra Attacks by Amanda Hocking (Audio, 3 stars). An interesting short story at the end of the Switched audio. I liked this one better than the main story in the series. Loki is a far more likable character than than Wendy could ever be. What killed this for me was that it would randomly jump into another characters head for the sake of convenience. Which I find to be lazy story telling.

Others who enjoyed the book more than I did

  • Book Chick City – “SWITCHED held my attention from the offset. I liked the unique twist on trolls, and Wendy started to show admirable qualities towards the end indicating growth and maturity she lacked earlier in the novel.”
  • Coffee, Books, & Me – “This book was extremely addicting. I was hooked since the first page.”
  • Paranormal & Urban Fantasy Reviews – “This book had alot of great elements to it: action, secrets, mystery, and a hint of romance. With it’s easy flow and likable characters, its a must read with YA fans as well as Adults. I’m already looking forward to the rest of the series.”
  • All Things Books – “The characters were perfectly formed with personalities that were easy to become intertwined with and the descriptive way that the author painted the surroundings made it easy to form pictures in your mind. [The story] was gripping, exciting, full of adventure and fantasy and just great.”

6 Responses to “Audio Review: Switched by Amanda Hocking (Spoilers)”

  1. Laura W.

    “This book had a lot of great elements to it: action, secrets, mystery, and a hint of romance.”

    ^^Having elements of a good book does not mean that those elements combine to make a good book. Argh. They may as well say, “This book has everything that has made YA paranormal popular recently.”

    And I’m sorry, but after the Internet, I automatically think of the trollface when I hear “trolls.” 😛

    Someone who *does* do a good job with trolls in YA paranormal is Holly Black in the book VALIANT. To rescue a friend, the MC agrees to serve a troll for a year. She ends up saving his life and to return the favor, he teaches her how to actually defend herself so she doesn’t almost die the next time. They move from enemies to friends to enemies again to love interests.

    • Irish

      I agree with you but I don’t fault others for having an opinion that differs from mine. Though I do often wonder if I read the same book as they did. lol I also love Holly Black’s writing. I haven’t read Valiant yet but its in my list to get to.

    • Laura W.

      It’s not so much that their opinion bothers me, just the implication that you can throw x, y, and z together for a magic formula for a good/popular book.

      If Wendy starts whiny and becomes more mature, I might actually be interested in that. But from what you said of the rest of the book, it sounds like I probably wouldn’t like it.

  2. Caspette

    I have not read this series and I am reluctant too. I also do not generally get along with over hyped books. I thought you gave it a fair review though.