Whoops, I DNF-ed some ARCs!
Last week, I praised some of the Bookcon ARCs I had read, but with the good always comes some bad. I ended up DNF-ing two ARCs I got at Bookcon, and I thought it’d be nice to talk about them, since both of them ended up failing my expectations, and my job as a bookworm is to save people from bookish disappointment, obviously!
(Also, just in case you were wondering, this wasn’t posted yesterday because I had no wi-fi over the weekend – from Saturday afternoon to Monday afternoon – and I hadn’t written any review, so I had to skip yesterday and post today instead!)
Genre: Dystopian, Sci-fi
Series: Words #1
Release Date: August 29, 2017
In a world where every word and gesture is copyrighted, patented or trademarked, one girl elects to remain silent rather than pay to speak, and her defiant and unexpected silence threatens to unravel the very fabric of society.
Speth Jime is anxious to deliver her Last Day speech and celebrate her transition into adulthood. The moment she turns fifteen, Speth must pay for every word she speaks (“Sorry” is a flat ten dollars and a legal admission of guilt), for every nod ($0.99/sec), for every scream ($0.99/sec) and even every gesture of affection. She’s been raised to know the consequences of falling into debt, and can’t begin to imagine the pain of having her eyes shocked for speaking words that she’s unable to afford.
But when Speth’s friend Beecher commits suicide rather than work off his family’s crippling debt, she can’t express her shock and dismay without breaking her Last Day contract and sending her family into Collection. Backed into a corner, Speth finds a loophole: rather than read her speechrather than say anything at allshe closes her mouth and vows never to speak again. Speth’s unexpected defiance of tradition sparks a media frenzy, inspiring others to follow in her footsteps, and threatens to destroy her, her family and the entire city around them.
Originally, I was super excited for this book! The cover was nice to look at, the concept sounded amazing and different from most dystopian novels, and I saw zero mention of any romance, so I was really happy when I managed to get a copy of it at Bookcon. I was quickly disappointed. From the beginning, something just felt…off. It was interesting, but I still felt a little bit bored about what was going on. I was still sticking with it since I was so excited for this book and didn’t want to give up on yet…until Speth is saved from sexual assault by a rebellious group of people who are against the strict government, and – you guessed it! – one of the members is an attractive boy her age with an air of sarcasm about him. I knew from that moment on that it was just becoming yet another YA dystopian novel that I’ve already read and has been done better, so I quit. I’m so disappointed in this one since it had such a good concept, but it didn’t work out! I seem to be in the minority, so maybe others might enjoy it!
Genre: Contemporary, Sci-Fi, Fantasy
Release Date: September 19, 2017
Jane has lived an ordinary life, raised by her aunt Magnolia—an adjunct professor and deep sea photographer. Jane counted on Magnolia to make the world feel expansive and to turn life into an adventure. But Aunt Magnolia was lost a few months ago in Antarctica on one of her expeditions.
Now, with no direction, a year out of high school, and obsessed with making umbrellas that look like her own dreams (but mostly just mourning her aunt), she is easily swept away by Kiran Thrash—a glamorous, capricious acquaintance who shows up and asks Jane to accompany her to a gala at her family’s island mansion called Tu Reviens.
Jane remembers her aunt telling her: “If anyone ever invites to you to Tu Reviens, promise me that you’ll go.” With nothing but a trunkful of umbrella parts to her name, Jane ventures out to the Thrash estate. Then her story takes a turn, or rather, five turns. What Jane doesn’t know is that Tu Reviens will offer her choices that can ultimately determine the course of her untethered life. But at Tu Reviens, every choice comes with a reward, or a price.
I honestly wasn’t too intrigued with this one since I read the synopsis multiple times, and each time I was like, “Wait…what?” But, since this was one of the Penguin Teen Game-Changers in the box I won at Bookcon, I decided to cave and try it out since after having the concept explained via Booktube, I got super excited. A mind-bending book where there are five different stories to tell, all in different genres? I was sold! Unfortunately, this book was just weird – even too weird for me. I didn’t care about any of the characters, the writing was way too stiff, I was getting bored just reading the 100 pages I did, and when I finally got to the part where we’re supposed to break into different paths, I was really disappointed where instead of being a story where the main character is faced with five doors that define her future, and she only has one choice, it ended up being about the main character having to choose between five different characters to go with, and going on a different journey depending on who you choose. Unfortunately, this book wasn’t for me, but it’ll probably be the perfect fit for someone else!