Thursday, September 19, 2013

What's Left of Me by Kat Zhang | Book Review


What's Left of Me is the first book in Kat Zhang's The Hybrid Chronicles series. The second book Once We Were released this week.

Book Description

I should not exist. But I do.

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.

Review

I absolutely love it when a book builds and builds and ends on an awesome note like one giant crescendo. Unfortunately, What's Left of Me was the exact opposite of the crescendo effect. What's Left of Me is possibly the first book I have ever read that was a complete decrescendo.

The beginning of What's Left of Me was awesome. The way the premise of two souls inhabiting one body was explained and handled was nothing short of brilliant. I was immediately invested in the characters, and it was hard to get the premise or the characters off of my mind.

Once the plot really got underway, however, my problems with the book began to snowball. We are told society feels one way, yet we are shown another. We drifted from huge thought provoking questions down to teenage drama. I had no trouble believing two souls could exist in one body, but I couldn't believe normal human reactions. I felt like less and less time was spent on the details the further I got into the book. There were just too many plot holes to keep me from singing its praises.

A lot of the logic problems I found with What's Left of Me reminded me of Article 5 by Kristin Simmons. If you loved Article 5, the issues I had with What's Left of Me may not bother you.

I'm in a weird predicament having to rate What's Left of Me. I loved the beginning of What's Left of Me so much I'm almost inclined to recommend it just for that (so good!), but the rest of the book was such a let down that I have absolutely no intention of continuing the rest of the series. As a result, my rating is split down the middle.

5/10: > aka the decrescendo of awesome

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3 comments:

  1. I read Article 5, but not this. What a bummer when you get all excited about a story at the beginning and it starts the downward slide. You rated it fairly, I believe. Thanks for sharing this review.

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  2. Wait by one giant crescendo do you mean the kind of books that have really open endings or those that build and build towards a climax and that climax is fulfilling in its resolution? Because it's the former, I'm going to have to disagree :P. You're also making me wish I had the slightest knowledge of musical things so that I could relate to what you said about crescendo and decrescendo.

    Oh, it's the worst when the beginning is so awesome, and you get invested, and then you find yourself suddenly bored or struggling to finish the book. The premise of two souls inhabiting the same body is what interests me about the novel, so knowing that it handles that aspect well is at least encouraging.

    What sort of reaction we talking about? People aren't supposed to like the 2 souls, right? But I'm guessing they make friends easily or? "We drifted from huge thought provoking questions down to teenage drama." <-- That, that is why I'm afraid to read this novel. Kind of like the Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer - or at least Cinder and not as much time on the cyborg part. What kind of human reactions and plot holes we talking about?

    OOh, I'm curious to know what issues you had with Article 5 - that was one of 3 books I DNFed. I'll check out that post after this one :).

    Yikes, the ending was that bad? Maybe it wasn't meant to be a series...? That I could believe given your review and how YA tends to be like that too...

    Can I also say how much I love your rating?? People tend to look at my ten likes/dislikes as a thing out of ten even though the cover is one of them o.O and yours is actually out of 10 and gives a great summary for your feelings about the book.

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