ARC/Book Review: They Both Die at the End – Adam Silvera

Title: They Both Die at the End (2017)
Author: Adam Silvera
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction
Extent: 384 pages
Release Date: September 5, 2017
Rating: ★★★★☆

Goodreads Description

On September 5, a little after midnight, Death-Cast calls Mateo Torrez and Rufus Emeterio to give them some bad news: They’re going to die today.

Mateo and Rufus are total strangers, but, for different reasons, they’re both looking to make a new friend on their End Day. The good news: There’s an app for that. It’s called the Last Friend, and through it, Rufus and Mateo are about to meet up for one last great adventure and to live a lifetime in a single day.

Review

I should’ve known what I was getting into with this book. I mean, with a title like They Both Die at the End, what else can you expect but to be thrown right into Heartbreak Central? As it turns out, however, there’s quite a little bit more in the story rather than tears and sadness — I think it’s what Adam Silvera does best. 😉

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Book Review: Scythe – Neal Shusterman

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Title: Scythe (2016)
Series: Arc of a Scythe – Book 1
Author: Neal Shusterman
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopian Fiction
Extent: 448 pages
Release Date: November 22, 2016
Rating: ★★★★☆

Goodreads Description

In a world where disease has been eliminated, the only way to die is to be randomly killed (“gleaned”) by professional reapers (“scythes”). Citra and Rowan are teenagers who have been selected to be scythe’s apprentices, and—despite wanting nothing to do with the vocation—they must learn the art of killing and come to understand the necessity of what they do.

Only one of them will be chosen as a scythe’s apprentice. And when it becomes clear that the winning apprentice’s first task will be to glean the loser, Citra and Rowan are pitted against one another in a fight for their lives.

Review

So, funny story: I started writing this review quite a few weeks after finishing it, fully intending to give it a half-star lower than what I ended up, and as I was writing, I realised just how much I really enjoyed this book. The flaws I thought were flaws began to minimise, while things I loved expanded and took centre stage. Somehow, Scythe is the book I always wanted to read but never knew I wanted to read. Interesting, isn’t it, how a book can do that to you? 🤔

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Book Review: The Diabolic – S. J. Kincaid

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Title: The Diabolic (2016)
Author: S. J. Kincaid
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction
Extent: 416 pages
Release Date: November 1, 2016
Rating: ★★★☆☆

Goodreads Description

Nemesis is a Diabolic, a humanoid teenager created to protect a galactic senator’s daughter, Sidonia. The two have grown up side by side, but are in no way sisters. Nemesis is expected to give her life for Sidonia, and she would do so gladly. She would also take as many lives as necessary to keep Sidonia safe.

When the power-mad Emperor learns Sidonia’s father is participating in a rebellion, he summons Sidonia to the Galactic court. She is to serve as a hostage. Now, there is only one way for Nemesis to protect Sidonia. She must become her. Nemesis travels to the court disguised as Sidonia—a killing machine masquerading in a world of corrupt politicians and two-faced senators’ children. It’s a nest of vipers with threats on every side, but Nemesis must keep her true abilities a secret or risk everything.

Review

The Diabolic is the story of Nemesis, an artificial creature created specifically to the person she is chemically bonded with. Her entire life is devoted to Sidonia, a senator’s daughter, and when she has to impersonate Sidonia as the Emperor’s hostage to protect her, she does so completely willingly, even knowing that she might be walking straight into her death.

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Book Review: Red Rising – Pierce Brown

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Title: Red Rising (2014)
Series: Red Rising – Book 1
Author: Pierce Brown
Publisher: Del Rey (Random House)
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction
Extent: 382 pages
Release Date: January 28, 2014
Rating: ★★★★☆

Goodreads Description

Darrow is a Red, a miner in the interior of Mars. His mission is to extract enough precious elements to one day tame the surface of the planet and allow humans to live on it.

The Reds are humanity’s last hope. Or so it appears, until the day Darrow discovers it’s all a lie.

That Mars has been habitable – and inhabited – for generations, by a class of people calling themselves the Golds. A class of people who look down on Darrow and his fellows as slave labour, to be exploited and worked to death without a second thought. Until the day that Darrow, with the help of a mysterious group of rebels, disguises himself as a Gold and infiltrates their command school, intent on taking down his oppressors from the inside.

But the command school is a battlefield – and Darrow isn’t the only student with an agenda.

Review

It took me ages to actually pick up Red Rising! Everyone and their mother have recommended it to me, and while I was intrigued, science fiction is one of those genres that I’m not always in the mood in. Red Rising, though, blew me out of the water and I’m kicking myself for not picking it up sooner.

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ARC/Book Review: Replica – Lauren Oliver

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Title: Replica (2016)
Author: Lauren Oliver
Publisher: Hachette Australia
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction
Extent: 336 pages
Release Date: October 6, 2016
Rating: ★★★★☆

Goodreads Description

Gemma has been in and out of hospitals since she was born. ‘A sickly child’, her lonely life to date has revolved around her home, school and one best friend, Alice. But when she discovers her father’s connection to the top secret Haven research facility, currently hitting the headlines and under siege by religious fanatics, Gemma decides to leave the sanctuary she’s always known to find the institute and determine what is going on there and why her father’s name seems inextricably linked to it.

Amidst the frenzy outside the institute’s walls, Lyra – or number 24 as she is known as at Haven – and a fellow experimental subject known only as 72, manage to escape. Encountering a world they never knew existed outside the walls of their secluded upbringing, they meet Gemma and, as they try to understand Haven’s purpose together, they uncover some earth-shattering secrets that will change the lives of both girls forever…

Review

I wasn’t sure what to expect from Lauren Oliver’s Replica when I first started reading it — all I knew is that it is science fiction and technically two books in one. The two stories here are told from the perspective of two girls whose lives eventually intersect, and the idea is that you can either a) read all of Lyra’s story and then all of Gemma’s or vice versa, or b) read one chapter of one character’s story, then another of the other character’s story, and so on.

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