Review – The Forgetting by Sharon Cameron

What isn’t written, isn’t remembered. Even your crimes.
Nadia lives in the city of Canaan, where life is safe and structured, hemmed in by white stone walls and no memory of what came before. But every twelve years the city descends into the bloody chaos of the Forgetting, a day of no remorse, when each person’s memories – of parents, children, love, life, and self – are lost. Unless they have been written.
In Canaan, your book is your truth and your identity, and Nadia knows exactly who hasn’t written the truth. Because Nadia is the only person in Canaan who has never forgotten.
But when Nadia begins to use her memories to solve the mysteries of Canaan, she discovers truths about herself and Gray, the handsome glassblower, that will change her world forever. As the anarchy of the Forgetting approaches, Nadia and Gray must stop an unseen enemy that threatens both their city and their own existence – before the people can forget the truth. And before Gray can forget her.

The first thing i need to mention about this book is that there is self harm, not by the main character but it is by someone close to her.

I had been thinking about listening to the audio-book for months when i picked it up. I was bored and needed something to listen to while at work. When I started listening to it, I was iffy about it. Originally I was not a fan of any of the characters and I almost gave up about third of the way in, but i was told it would get better so i kept on reading.  The entire first half  of the book nothing made sense! It was getting very confusing in certain parts. There is very little to no explanation of anything in the first half but once the second half starts you figure out what exactly is happening and why. The first half of the book went really slow but once things started moving I could not stop listening to it

-Spoilers Ahead-
I was trying to not get attached to the characters but the more I read(well listened) the more I became attached to the characters.  I was intrigued as to why Nadia could remember but nobody else could. As the story goes on we find out that Canaan is actually not on Earth but on an entirely different planet. We find out that the people on the planet were supposed to be colonizing the it so that they could see if life was sustainable there. the farther in the story you get the more you find out about why Canaan is the way it is and who the original settlers were and why Grey is so important to Nadia.

Overall after you get to the second half of the book it is fantastic.  It improves ten fold which is nice. The story becomes much more fast paced and everything ties in. The person who does the voice for the characters does a great job at narrating each character and does them each justice.

3.5 Bards

The Forgetting

Kindle Edition: Check Amazon for Pricing Digital Only

Waiting on Wednesday

Every week Breaking the Spine hosts the bookish meme for book bloggers to share what books they are waiting on to be released!  This week I’m waiting on: 

Release Date: February 4, 2014

Two years ago, the aliens made contact. Now Cara Sweeney is going to be sharing a bathroom with one of them. 

Handpicked to host the first-ever L’eihr exchange student, Cara thinks her future is set. Not only does she get a free ride to her dream college, she’ll have inside information about the mysterious L’eihrs that every journalist would kill for. Cara’s blog following is about to skyrocket. 

Still, Cara isn’t sure what to think when she meets Aelyx. Humans and L’eihrs have nearly identical DNA, but cold, infuriatingly brilliant Aelyx couldn’t seem more alien. She’s certain about one thing, though: no human boy is this good-looking. 

But when Cara’s classmates get swept up by anti-L’eihr paranoia, Midtown High School suddenly isn’t safe anymore. Threatening notes appear in Cara’s locker, and a police officer has to escort her and Aelyx to class. 

Cara finds support in the last person she expected. She realizes that Aelyx isn’t just her only friend; she’s fallen hard for him. But Aelyx has been hiding the truth about the purpose of his exchange, and its potentially deadly consequences. Soon Cara will be in for the fight of her life—not just for herself and the boy she loves, but for the future of her planet.

Book Review: What’s Left of Me by Kat Zhang

Eva and Addie started out the same way as everyone else—two souls woven together in one body, taking turns controlling their movements as they learned how to walk, how to sing, how to dance. But as they grew, so did the worried whispers. Why aren’t they settling? Why isn’t one of them fading? The doctors ran tests, the neighbors shied away, and their parents begged for more time. Finally Addie was pronounced healthy and Eva was declared gone. Except, she wasn’t . . . 

For the past three years, Eva has clung to the remnants of her life. Only Addie knows she’s still there, trapped inside their body. Then one day, they discover there may be a way for Eva to move again. The risks are unimaginable-hybrids are considered a threat to society, so if they are caught, Addie and Eva will be locked away with the others. And yet for a chance to smile, to twirl, to speak, Eva will do anything.

I’m not going to lie; I thought I might get a little confused about the whole two souls in one body deal. I have the tendency to get confused if there are too many characters in one book, much less having one body with two souls. Kat Zhang did a marvelous job creating these characters and insuring both Eva and Addie have distinct voices and personalities. The main thing that helped me was that the book was narrated by Eva. That never wavered. If Addie had started narrating I would have been totally lost. 

I thought the concept of this book was fascinating. Zhang’s imagination must be out of control. She created this unique concept and she explores the depth of emotions that one might go through in this universe. What is not clear is why humans have two souls, have they always had them or is it some sort of evolutionary thing that has occurred or is this more like The Host 50 years in the future? Anyway I’m sure that will be explored in later books. 

Eva and Addie’s relationship is complicated and a little bit heartbreaking. Addie is the dominate soul, meaning she has full control of their bodies. Eva is just essentially floating in Addie’s mind. No one knows she is there, or can hear her. She has no control over their body, if she doesn’t want to read or watch TV she has no choice. Eva doesn’t really complain about this but you can tell sometimes it bothers her, and Addie who has the better end of the deal rarely feels guilt. The whole dynamic changes when they meet Hally who knows how to bring Eva out, and when they learn that there are still people living with both souls in their bodies. This revelation brings up new possibilities for the future for Eva at least. She may have the opportunity to have a life out of Addie’s head. But that means Addie has to be ok with not being present some of the time. Could this mean romance is in the future for both girls? How in the world is that going to work? 

The book also explores what happens to people who are deemed to be “not right” or “insane”. The girls and others are forced to submit to test and medications to cure them of the other soul in their body and to live in an institution. This part was well written and slightly heartbreaking for the reader. I felt so bad for all of them; I wanted to rescue them myself. The climax was exciting and nerve-racking and ensured that you finished that book no matter the time of night! 

I liked this book. It was a good read and I will enjoy reading more from this series along with more from this author. 

4 Bards.

This review was submitted to A Midsummer Night’s Read by Missy

Book Review: Beta by Rachel Cohn

Elysia is created in a laboratory, born as a sixteen-year-old girl, an empty vessel with no life experience to draw from. She is a Beta, an experimental model of a teenage clone. She was replicated from another teenage girl, who had to die in order for Elysia to exist. Elysia’s purpose is to serve the inhabitants of Demesne, an island paradise for the wealthiest people on earth.
Everything about Demesne is bioengineered for perfection. Even the air induces a strange, euphoric high, which only the island’s workers–soulless clones like Elysia–are immune to.

At first, Elysia’s life is idyllic and pampered. But she soon sees that Demesne’s human residents, who should want for nothing, yearn. But for what, exactly? She also comes to realize that beneath the island’s flawless exterior, there is an undercurrent of discontent among Demesne’s worker clones.

She knows she is soulless and cannot feel and should not care–so why are overpowering sensations clouding Elysia’s mind? If anyone discovers that Elysia isn’t the unfeeling clone she must pretend to be, she will suffer a fate too terrible to imagine. When her one chance at happiness is ripped away with breathtaking cruelty, emotions she’s always had but never understood are unleashed. As rage, terror, and desire threaten to overwhelm her, Elysia must find the will to survive.

 Sometimes when I’m bored (at work, driving, working out) I let my imagination run wild with what I think the world will look like in the future. Will there be cars or hovercrafts or just teleportation tubes? I can honestly say that the world that Rachel Cohn created is unique because I for sure never envisioned her world.
BETA is set on an island that is genetically engineered to be perfect. The air is even infused with a calming gas so that everyone is happy and healthy. Clones exist on this island to serve because mear humans would not suffice. The island is only for the rich (clearly), I mean who would want to live amongst the poor?  The main character is a clone of a teenager called a BETA. She is one of the first of her kind and is purchased by a well to do family to be a companion for their children.
The book follows Elysia as she slowly discovers her humanity that she shouldn’t have. She soon starts to retain some memories from the teenager she was cloned from. Elysia also discovers that she has her own thoughts and wants and needs that she should not have. This of course has to happen or there would be no book to read.
I really enjoyed the book. It was written well, the story developed at a good pace. Everything that happened was well thought out and the language was inventive, but not too far-fetched that you couldn’t figure out what was going on. I really like the world that Rachel Cohn created and the story that goes with it. It has some adult themes so I would recommend this for older “young adults.”
4 bards
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