This review does not contain any spoilers for Tempest
Based on the 2013 sequels I've read so far (really only Through the Ever Night and Vortex), 2013...moreThis review does not contain any spoilers for Tempest
Based on the 2013 sequels I've read so far (really only Through the Ever Night and Vortex), 2013 seems to be the year of sequels that outshine their predecessors in practically every way imaginable. Vortex, the second installment in Julie Cross' Tempest trilogy, took all my preconceived expectations and expanded upon them, exceeding each and every one of my expectations by tenfold.
Where Tempest moved at a somewhat slow pace, letting the mystery and suspense build up throughout the novel, Vortex moved at a pace on a completely opposite spectrum than Tempest. One of the problems I had with Tempest was that I found it to be a bit slow moving - understandably so, however, considering Cross created her own concept of time travel and had to explain it, of course - but slow pace is definitely not a concern with Vortex. The action in Vortex begins right as you open the first page, and - cliche alert - doesn't stop until the final, excruciatingly evil pages.
Another problem I had with Tempest was that, while I found him to become more likable as the novel progressed and he let his feelings out (view spoiler)[particularly at the scene where he visited Courtney on her deathbed, which had me bawling my eyes out (hide spoiler)], I never was truly sold the character of Jackson, and to be honest, I didn't really like him until the very end. Clearly, not liking the main character is quite a big issue and can impact your enjoyment in the story a lot - and in a way, it did impact my enjoyment in Tempest - but Cross managed to make Jackson a much, much more likable character in Vortex, and introduced other characters that I found to be equally as likable. As well as that, the romance doesn't play as huge of a part in Vortex as it did in Tempest, and, actually, the romance barely played a part in the majority of Vortex, letting the plot and action take center stage, which is always a good thing.
However, there were a few things that detracted somewhat from my enjoyment in Vortex, the most prominent being the use of info-dumping by way of journal entries, and the awkward way it was presented. In Tempest, I liked the concept of having much of the novel told in journal entries, thinking it to be an original and fun way to get inside the protagonist's head rather than just reading what he thinks. In Vortex, however, I was not as big of a fan of the use of journal entries, finding the way they were written, like I had mentioned earlier, awkward, and just an excuse for info-dumping and recapping. As well as the problem of the stilted way in which the journal entries were presented, I also wasn't a huge fan of the dialogue between the characters. At times I found the dialogue to be a bit unbelievable for nineteen - twenty year old characters to be using, using words I would normally correlate with young teens, and other times I found the dialogue to be a bit repetitive, with an overuse of the words 'totally', et all.
However, despite those pretty minor qualms when compared to what I did like in the entirety of Vortex, I found Vortex to be an incredibly strong sequel to Tempest, full of action and character growth, leading to a crazy and intriguing end, with an evil, evil cliffhanger. I can tell that things are going to be even more crazy in the final installment of the Tempest trilogy, and I look forward to seeing any other unpredictable and untravelled roads Julie Cross may take to conclude her trilogy.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
I'm trying so desperately to find something even slightly redeemable about husband-and-wife team Katherine Applegate and Michael Grant's return to you...moreI'm trying so desperately to find something even slightly redeemable about husband-and-wife team Katherine Applegate and Michael Grant's return to young adult, Eve and Adam, but, as I was trying to think up some positive qualities that this book holds, I only ended up with the pathetic, "Well, it was a quick read...", and the equally as pathetic, "I guess it was original..." Clearly those two accolades - the only ones I can provide at the time, mind you - aren't the most enthusiastic, but this book wasn't mind-numbingly horrible. I just expected so much more from it, putting into consideration that the Animorphs series was my first foray into young adult as a teenager, and I really did love it. Unfortunately, my expectations got the best of me, and I ended up being utterly disappointed by Eve and Adam, but even if I didn't have such high expectations prior to reading this, I just doubt that I'd had have a different opinion of this book.
In a present day San Francisco, Evening Spiker, sole daughter of the incredibly wealthy and powerful businesswoman and geneticist Terra Spiker, is suddenly in a car accident in which she loses a leg, and severely injures an arm. Immediately rushed to the hospital, Evening is taken care of in no time, and she is healing at the same rate. As she is going through the quick healing process, Evening befriends a boy named Solo, who knows more about Evening, and Spiker Biotech, than he's willing to admit. As well as the mysterious Solo, Evening's mother, in order to keep her occupied during her recovery, gives Evening the task of creating the perfect boy. However, as this perfect boy, eventually named Adam, is brought to life, we have to suffer through three identical narratives secrets unknown to Evening are unraveled.
The premise for Eve and Adam is incredibly intriguing, and it's also very original. The book itself, however, is not. What could have been an extremely entertaining book - one that makes you stop and say, "Wow. This book had a lot of thought put into it." - only ended up being bogged down by horrendous little tropes we see too often in young adult. Love triangle? Check. Insta-love? Check. Stereotypical promiscuous best friend in which the main character lives her sexual life through? Check. The love interests saying their 'I love you''s after having a few conversations? Check. With all of those tropes, and quite a few more, making their appearances in Eve and Adam, this book turns into a book with a whole lot of promise, to a book where all that promise is thrown in the garbage to make way for romance. Yet another young adult trope to add to Eve and Adam's lengthy list.
From the start, we're introduced to Evening Spiker, or as she is more commonly referenced in the book, Eve. What can I say about Eve... Well, she is... a character... Yeah. She's a character. Congratulations, Eve; that's all I can muster up about you. As well as Eve, we're introduced to Solo, who, when combined with Eve, is given about as much character development as a wooden plank. Maybe the wooden plank was given a little more character development. Going in to this book, I was not aware that there would be multiple narratives, and, had I known, I probably would have steered clear of this book and run far, far away. Few authors are actually able to pull off multiple narratives, and I hate to say that Applegate and Grant certainly aren't one of those few authors. But, to add to that fact that both Eve and Solo's narratives were practically interchangeable, Applegate and Grant had to add a third narrative - one that is equally as interchangeable as the other two. Note to authors: when it comes to multiple narratives? Just ... don't...
To add to the tropes that ruined a could-be good story, and the three identical narratives, it really doesn't help that the writing is painfully amateur, and that there are some extremely unnecessary subplots, that, in my opinion, were only really added to make the book longer (come on, was the Aislin and Maddox sublot really necessary? Really?).
Ultimately, Eve and Adam is a disappointment in every sense of the word, and is only really getting two stars from me because it had its few, yet funny, one-liners, and it was a quick read, and never actually painful to get through, like that of many books I've given one star this year. Don't take that as praise, though, because that's really the most amount of positives I can muster when it comes to this book. The author himself (Michael Grant) said in a comment, "This is Katherine and me having fun, not trying to be heavy or deep.", and while I think it's great that they had fun writing this, I don't think it's great that I did not have much fun reading this. And, to conclude Grant's comment, and my review, this is what was said, "EVE AND ADAM is just light, sexy, silly fun." My thoughts on that?