Saturday, September 8, 2012
What's Left of Me
Author: Kat Zhang
Rating: 2 stars
Summary: 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: This book was better than many dystopian books out there nowadays, but the ending just didn't work for me. There were a few flaws in the logic: Why are hybrids considered dangerous? Is it because of society's need for normalcy? Except, all other countries are populated by hybrids so really people who settle are abnormal. When a hybrid man is surrounded by a mob in the streets, Hally/Lissa gets arrested because she was too close to the hybrid guy. This doesn't make sense because how would the police know that Hally/Lissa was a hybrid? They can't tell just by looking at her, and the police wouldn't know that she had taken a long time to settle since they wouldn't know her name or be able to look at her medical files. Second, how would people live their lives if they're sharing a body with another person, with both of them switching in and out of control of the body? The two souls still have different personalities, so how would you be married if you're not always the person who got married and your spouse is not always the person you married? What if each soul prefers a different line of work? Does the body have two jobs and some days you go to one job and other days you go the different job? When Ryan/Devon and Hally/Lissa were helping Eva to regain control over her and Addie's body, there were some days where she couldn't even speak. Yet around the time of her entering the hospital, Eva is suddenly able to slip into control of the body, even when Addie isn't sent to sleep by the drug. There was no insta-love, and as the story neared it's end I assumed that there would be no romance at all. But it was right at the end that the author decided to have Eva and Ryan kiss. The fact that Addie is very much against kissing Ryan is mentioned, which is what I was saying about being married when you're two people. Also, many of the characters were very two-dimensional. Eva was narrating so the reader got to know her well, but all I really got of Addie was that she didn't want Eva to be in control of their body and was mean to Eva. We know almost nothing of Ryan/Devon and Hally/Lissa aside from the fact that they're both hybrids. Are their parents hybrids? Do their parents know that their kids are hybrids? Another problem I have with the book is that world-building was sub-par. The story takes place in present-ish time United States, except the U.S. shut itself off from the rest of the world after fighting the Great Wars where the got rid of all hybrids and immigrants in the U.S. I had only the vaguest idea of what the world was like.
A thought-provoking premise, but it was badly executed.