My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Mystery, Dystopia, High School, Romance, Family
Kyla’s memory has been erased, her personality wiped blank, her memories lost forever. She’s been slated. The government claims that she was a terrorist and they are giving her a second chance—if she plays by their rules. But scenes from the past haunt her as she tries to adjust to a new life, family, and school, leaving her unsettled. Who is she really? And if only criminals are meant to be slated, why are so many other teens disappearing? As she and her friend Ben seek answers, Kyla is torn between the need to know more and her instinct for self-preservation.
I was hooked… until about halfway through. Then my interest started to dwindle considerably.
I have the main character and love interest to thank for that. Kyla was likable in the beginning, someone I could connect with, but I am tired of characters who believe and are told that they are ‘‘unique’’ or ‘‘different’’ or ‘‘special.’’
Or, in Kyla’s case, ALL OF THE ABOVE.
The concept makes sense. I’m not saying I agree with removing people’s memories, as an attempt to rid them of their terrorist thoughts and actions, but at least I understood the world Kyla lives in, and my mixed opinions on the whole process of slating actually made me want to read more for once.
But the world-building does not expand. What you’re presented with in the beginning is basically all that you get. There is a mystery of a sort, so we do learn more about the history of slating, but this is in no way comparable to other, better, more complex dystopian series.
Fortunately, the reading experience is enjoyable for the most part. This author’s writing is in no way impressive, but it is straight-forward and easy to follow. Kyla is prone to sudden outbursts of emotions, which add a high degree of intensity to the story – and intensity is probably the number one winning element in a story for me.
I’m pretty sure I would have enjoyed this one more if it had been one of the first dystopian books I had ever read, if I hadn’t already been familiar with this genre’s tropes. And with a different main character and love interest, it’s possible I would have even loved this to pieces, because it is indeed intriguing. Four stars for the first half and two for the second half.
PS. Did we need a vampire on the cover?
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