Caro [The Book Rogue]'s Reviews > Stitch

Stitch by Samantha Durante
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May 02, 15

bookshelves: 2012, r2r, dystopia
Read from August 09 to 16, 2012, read count: 1

I'll sum that up with two short words: rollercoaster ride. I'm perfectly serious, this book was emotional and factual a mess pretty much unparalleled -- and it was awesome! I'm sure I wasn't the only one led by the nose through the first half of this book.

I really thought this would be about time travel. Although ususally not a fan of the subject, I was perfectly fine with the idea that female lead Alessa was seeing a ghost named Isaac, and was supposed to travel back in time to safe him, since this didn't sound totally absurd and the emotional level was startling. Everything was so perfectly in place, I was totally forgetting that the blurb already mentioned she wasn't really a university student and Isaac wasn't really a ghost, so there wouldn't be any travelling through time. Go ahead and laugh if you must, but it's making me give a lot of credit to the style if any reader might get so lost in the story like I was, especially since this turns out to be a dystopian story where deception and control plays such a mayor role.

Speaking of dystopian... Although it was kinda nothing new since it was about a virus breaking out and people herding together in quarantine where a new government is established, thought to be temporary, and then they misuse their power to create a totalitarian society which exploits its working force, and of course there is a rebel movement. I have no problem with the commonness of that, maybe because I don't read dystopian all that often, but even regulars on that setting are hopefully rattled by the new aspects tossed into the mix: control through drugs, and being imprisoned in another persona.

I mean, ususally you find a small group of people who hold the power using fear to keep their workers in line, which inhibits the oppressed population to make a move, although everyone knows they should, meaning they all want to rebel, but only a few dare to do so. In Stitch, the working force is drugged through their food, and then kept occupied with work and social media, meaning they are to watch reality shows very night. What they don't know: the actors in those shows aren't playing. They are prisoners who are made to believe they live exactly the life on set (which has come to get called "stitched" because this is how the memory re-wiring process feels like). It reminds me a bit of what was done to Peeta in The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins, and I still find only one word within me to describe it: cruel. I mean, can you imagine being "stitched" into a totally different person, living a life as far from your own as possible, having forgotten all that makes you yourself, and being watched for entertainment of others nonetheless?! The whole idea creeps me out, so I'm shocked every time I stumble across it, and of course that's getting bonus points from me.

Which brings me to our stitched main characters, Alessa and Isaac. Starting only with the names, I like them. Can't say exactly why, but I feel like they aren't too common and sound quite well together. The second plus is that Alessa is acutally two years older than Issac, a combination you really don't find that often in YA lit, so I'm giving credits there. Now the book is written mainly from Alessa's PoV, but Isaac has a few chapter which give intel into his feelings as well, and it makes me like them both very much, ecven more so after it was revealed they were stitched, and then when their memories returned in a few flashes for the reader. Their relationship definitively is one of the more unusual ones since Alessa was originally the love interest of Isaac's older brother Joe, but then they naturally find together after his death. However, I think this might remain a point of conflict in the future, which sould prove very interesting. Anyway, they both get lots of bonus points for feeling so authentic, so human, which is made clear through all the little things presented in the flashbacks but also in the beginning, when they only see glimpses of one another without knowing the truth about the stitch.

Of course, the supporting characters get credit as well. I kinda liked Nikhil, and was shocked over his short cut appearance. Janie was awesome, a perfect complement to Alessa, Isaac and Joe; as was Lizzie and Regina. I'm curious to find out more about them and the other rebels that were only briefly introduced; because there are some many awesome stories to be found behind their involvement, I'm sure of it. Lizzie's story was already... omg, I can't even pinpoint it with a word that'd give enough credit to her.

All in all, as you might see on the lenghty review, I loved this. Granted, there was only a brief touching of the romantic surface there, but I still liked what I found and I am very, very sure we'll get more of that in the future. But of course I don't want to read on just because of that, but for about a thousand other reasons as well. I'm still thrilled and entrapped in this, and I can't wait for Shudder to come out, which is the title of the second installment of the Stitch trilogy.

Area Scan: Style: 5/5 -- Plot: 5/5 -- Characters: 5/5 -- Suspense: 5/5 -- Romance: 3.5/5 -- Drama: 5/5 -- Humor: 3/5 -- Fantasy: 5/5
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