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Monday, September 21, 2015

Book Review: The Body Electric by Beth Revis

Genre: Young Adult Sci-Fi, Futuristic
Publication: October 2014 by Scripturient Books (self published)
Acquisition: Bought a Kindle ebook

The future world is at peace.

Ella Shepherd has dedicated her life to using her unique gift—the ability to enter people’s dreams and memories using technology developed by her mother—to help others relive their happy memories.

But not all is at it seems.

Ella starts seeing impossible things—images of her dead father, warnings of who she cannot trust. Her government recruits her to spy on a rebel group, using her ability to experience—and influence—the memories of traitors. But the leader of the rebels claims they used to be in love—even though Ella’s never met him before in her life. Which can only mean one thing…

Someone’s altered her memory.

Ella’s gift is enough to overthrow a corrupt government or crush a growing rebel group. She is the key to stopping a war she didn’t even know was happening. But if someone else has been inside Ella’s head, she cannot trust her own memories, thoughts, or feelings.

So who can she trust?
(from Goodreads)

2 / 5 Stars

Straight up honest.

I didn't like this book.

Main reason? There wasn't a whole lot of sense making going on. The science, the details, the plot - throughout the book and then explosively at the end, none of it made sense.

I don't usually read self published novels because I don't tend to enjoy them. It's Beth Revis though so I still wanted to give it a chance. Unfortunatly, The Body Electric wasn't an exception to my - 'you're not going to like this one' rule.

However, I'm somewhat in the minority here so I'm even more skeptical as to why.

Skepticism aside - even without my potentially self-published bias - I don't believe I would have enjoyed this book.

I did like the imagery, and the futuristic aspect. However, the fact that it takes place in the same world as Across the Universe coolness was lost on me as I almost missed the throwaway line connecting the two and on my own, I wouldn't have found the connection at all.

But what really really didn't work for me were the inconsistencies. BIG ones.

Not, blue eyes on one page and brown on another (although this would be extremely irritating it would not, overall be detrimental to the story or plot).

The inconsistencies here though? Not overlookable (new word).

No spoilers but here is an example:

A major element to the story, and to the world and lives of the characters in it is explained early on. Matter of fact explanation. Good to go - moving on.

Later in the book - this element? It's different. It's actually the exact opposite of what it was explained to be. And not in a plot twist way. Not in a oh my god someone is messing with things and we're figuring it all out now! No - more like a, on page 1 the sky is blue and on page 50 the sky is magenta polka dots and of course it is because it needs to be for everything else to make sense -- duh!

Ok - maybe not a very good example but hopefully you get what I'm trying to say.

There are other things too -- the synopsis (it's not accurate), the plot (it has a lot of holes), the 'bad guy' (very much the villain holding the heroes over a pit of fiery lava who instead of actually dropping them in the fiery lava and ensuring victory, decide to wax poetically about all the reasons behind all the things and all the plans and all the badness and oh look the heroes escaped).

There were parts of this book I really did enjoy - just not enough of them.

While things didn't fit for me - maybe they would for you? (Seriously, take a look at other reviews on Goodreads and the like). It's hard for me to actually recommend this one but, we are all unique snowflakes and maybe my extreme dissatisfaction would be your most favorite thing ever.

I'm VERY interested in hearing what you thought of this one! If you've read it, leave a comment, tweet me, etc.

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