3.5 While the pace is uneven and somewhere in the middle it is quite slow and mostly romance the book never really lost me as a reader and i didn't co...more3.5 While the pace is uneven and somewhere in the middle it is quite slow and mostly romance the book never really lost me as a reader and i didn't consider not finishing it. I guess, the praise goes to the characters - they're colorful, the heroine isn't perfect but she's likable and her voice didn't bother me. Her family situation is quite interesting as is the world she lives in. The quibble I have with the worlbuilding is that the book gives us bits and pieces, some explained others only a little and I suppose I would have liked to get the feeling for this wolrd, a little more. The plot- the main mystery is good but for me, a tad too much romance at times, when it seems the plot is barely moving. There's a lot going on in this book - some ya books can be really simplistic but this one delivers, (if you can get over the silly premise of outlawing chocolate).
But. the characters don't quite feel like they are living in quite such an oppresive and irrational country. I was reminded of soviet rule, where some orders and laws could be quite irrational. I didn't quite get the feeling (comparing to what I know and remember of living in such a country - rationing for one would have been felt more, mentioned more at various places, here it's perhaps mentioned twice, and so, sprinkiling the details here and there doesn't really give me the feeling that it's all encompasing, that it's truly a different way of thinking about it for the characters) that this world was really that bad, perhaps it wasn't meant to be.(less)
On one hand I'd complain that this book was sometimes way too slow. On the other hand it is supposed to follow the life of one guy, who's not particul...moreOn one hand I'd complain that this book was sometimes way too slow. On the other hand it is supposed to follow the life of one guy, who's not particularly proactif. He's full of doubts and so following his life records (as this book is constructed) is not all that exciting at times. There are additional articles, blogs, added that let us see the bigger picture - much appreciated, thought I'd have liked a little more. How does the world deal with immortality? We see what John and his friends and family do, we see reports from Russia and China (predictable) and that's it. I'd have liked more nuance I guess, and perhaps something less predictable as far as Russia and China go.
John as the protagonist didn't quite work for me- I mean I didn't really fear for him, I simply didn't like him much. So there's a distance there. I'm not sure we're supposed to like him, really.
The whole thing with Solara at the end, where did this come from? Fascination, I can see, lust, ok, but love? I don't buy it.
I'm surprised the government didn't use some semi permanent (reversible) contraception (surgery) while giving people the cure. Because overpopulation in this scenario is inevitable.
Overall, a good, thoght provoking book. At times I wish the author would have went into the wider worldbuilding (some of the glimpses we get were really interesting) a little more instead of the gangs, cannibals, killing. (less)
Three chapters in and I'm giving up. Neither the characters nor the plot grab me, prolly becuase the writing is focusing more on how the main characte...moreThree chapters in and I'm giving up. Neither the characters nor the plot grab me, prolly becuase the writing is focusing more on how the main characters are aroused by each other than describing this, at first glance, interesting post apocalyptic world. Damn the cover.(less)