Monday, November 25, 2013

REVIEW--Beta by Rachel Cohn

Happy Monday, friends!  I'm very excited today because tonight my younger sister Lauren and I are driving a few hours to meet one of her favorite celebrities--The Pioneer Woman!  And she's kind of an author, too...right?!  I'll share more with you about it tomorrow!

But today's post is a review on the book Beta by Rachel Cohn, the first in the science fiction Annex series.  So let's get right to it!

  • First in the Annex series
  • Science fiction
The Gist:
Elysia is a 16-year-old clone.  She was created after her "First," a teenage girl, died.  She now serves a wealthy family on Demesne, an island where everything (even the air!) is bio-engineered for perfection.   Living with the Governor's family (to replace their college-bound daughter), Elysia is satisfied with her life until she stars having memories of her First.  Now she, a supposedly soulless clone, has memories, feelings, and opinions.  If she lets anyone know this, she will be terminated.  But Elysia isn't sure she can choose a clone life forever, either.

What I Loved:
  • This book was very unpredictable--so many characters, like Xanthe, Tahir, and Dr. Lusardi have secrets that aren't expected.
  • I could picture Demesne and loved their virtual gaming systems (especially their game called LoveStory--how cute!).
What I Didn't Love:
  • So much was thrown in at the end--a pregnancy, murder, Zhara returning, Tahir disappearing--I felt like I read through the whole book just to get to all the action at the end!
  • The overall plot seems a little overdone.  When I booktalk this book, my students always say "Oh that sounds like ____ movie!  This sounds like ___ book!"  And they're right--it is a lot like other books and movies.
  • The characters take a drug--'raxia--all the time.  It becomes a little too much.
  • There isn't much information about what happened before Demesne, such as the Water Wars.  I'd like more about it.
  • I didn't buy into the romance stories in the plot (either on Tahir's end or Elysia's end with Alex).  Just didn't believe it. 
My favorite quote: 
"What does Beta mean?" I asked.
"A test model," she said.  "Still under development."  She chuckled and added, "Just like a real teenager."

So an ok book that had a more exciting ending than middle.  But I'll definitely pick up the sequel to see what happens!


I'll be back on Wednesday with a makeup look inspired by the book's cover--see you then!

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