manda's Reviews > The Line

The Line by Teri Hall
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's review
Feb 26, 2012

it was ok
bookshelves: coulda-been-better, dystopian, young-adult, zzzzzzz, post-apocalyptic
Read on February 28, 2012

I wouldn't say this book was so bad I felt like throwing my iPad across the room, but it was just. so. boring. It's a pity because it had so much promise. Oppressive government, media-dictated society, isolation from other countries, unknown beings scattered outside the borders, covert rebellions budding up from the inside? It had everything that could've made an intense, mysterious, action-filled adventure.

What it came across as, if I could put a name on it, would be fantasy drama. Imagine Harry Potter. Now imagine that the first book had been about Harry simply discovering what he was, then trying to get to Hogwarts.

That was The Line.

The Unified States had put a border around their country - an invisible force field known as the Line - in order to protect themselves against attacks from other countries. The states left outside the borders were simply abandoned, hence left unprotected when nuclear weapons were used against them. The result was death, mutation, and of course, super powers.

Pure is a story about Rachel, a young teenage girl (I don't know how old exactly, or if it was even ever mentioned), who lives just beside the Line, where her mother works as a housekeeper for a surly and strict old woman, Ms. Moore.

Everything changes when Rachel receives a message from someone from across the Line, begging for help. She's determined to deliver the aid he needs, and so must cross to the other side.

Besides the lack of anything engaging, and the snail-paced progression of this novel, there are other things that I must take issue with. Hopefully they are explained in the second book. And hopefully I can find spoiler reviews because I'm not sure I'll be reading the sequels.

1. Rachel
Oh how dull could a MC be. What I really didn't like about her was she is such a fucking cry baby. I get that the author's trying to make her seem like a sensitive, soft-hearted girl, but please. If Darwin's Natural Selection applied in her world, she wouldn't have made it out there on her own. She'd be crying over every spilt milk and injustice to society as the government drags her away.

2. Narrative
Was inconsistent at times. It's written in third limited, but often reads like omniscient. The tense also switches every so often to relay events that occured in the past before jumping back to the present (or simple past), making it confusing and annoying.

3. Infodumping
I am yet to read a book that does not include such cheesy ways of delivering background information. Pure uses the little gem that is "quizzes" to get all its information puked out on us. You see, Rachel is home-schooled by her mother, and is often "quizzed" to test her knowledge.

4. The Key
There's just a few things that didn't make sense to me. Slight spoilers ahead.

So. The "key". It is basically what allows people to cross the otherwise impenetrable line. It was said towards the end of the novel, that the people on the other side of the line had the keys, which is why Ms. Moore couldn't cross to join her lover.

So I'm asking, since when did they have the key? How did it get there in the first place? And why didn't they fucking use it to cross to the safe side of the US??? Why wouldn't Indigo just come back for Ms. Moore if he had a key? Why would Rachel's father stay there all this time and not try to get back to his family???

Again, I'm hoping it's all explained in the sequel. But since I'm not so invested in the characters or what happens to them, I'm not sure if I'll read it at all.
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Reading Progress

3.0% "Awww mannn I hope all this nonsense about fertilizing orchids and potting dendrobiums are somehow relevant later on."

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