Book Twirps's Reviews > Shift

Shift by Kim Curran
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's review
Aug 16, 2012

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What would you do if you could jump back in time, or “shift”, and change something you’d done? If you could go back and correct every bad decision, would you?

Sixteen-year-old Scott Tyler recently developed this ability. As would be expected in this scenario, there’s a government agency that wants to help Scott and other shifters control their power and, once they graduate from the special school, employ the shifters to help correct some of the wrongs in the world. But, with every group with good intentions, there’s always a rogue group who wants these people for their own purposes. But which group is the right group? Will Scott make the right choice, and will his decision help him, and more importantly, will it help save the world?

I’m torn on this one. The premise made it sound like it was right up my alley. I love superheroes, and strange abilities and stories with lots of action. This book has all of that in spades. The villain is creepy, and the action top-notch. That being said, there were a few places where the overall book fell short.

First, the characters didn’t seem to have authentic teen voices. They all seemed (to me at least) to be more like early to mid-twenties, not early to mid-teens. Another issue I had was the pacing. It was fast — Ms. Curran throws you into the story and drags you along with her, leaving you out of breath. This can be great when you have time to catch your breath, but I never felt I was able to. I’m the type of reader that needs to slow down and process what’s going on — and then go again. I felt the quick pace hindered the story a bit. I wanted more of the how and why of shifting. Lastly, the end was only so-so for me. I felt it was rushed and it left me a little underwhelmed, and I still didn’t feel I truly understood the how and why of shifting. With that being said, I felt that Ms. Curran has developed a great sci-fi story, I just wish that it had been fleshed out a little more.

If you are a fan of lots of action, superheroes and a book with a (very) fast pace, strap on your seatbelt and give this one a try. Keep a bottle of water handy, though, and watch out for sharp turns.

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