Wednesday, February 22, 2012

YA Sci-Fi: Starters by Lissa Price and Giveaway

Series: Starters #1
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Date: March 13, 2012
Format: ARC
Acquired: from Random Buzzers' Ambuzzadors
Read: for review (disclaimer: I received my copy of this book in return for an honest review.)
Pages: 335
Reading time: two days

From GoodReads: Callie lost her parents when the Spore Wars wiped out everyone between the ages of twenty and sixty. She and her little brother, Tyler, go on the run, living as squatters with their friend Michael and fighting off renegades who would kill them for a cookie. Callie's only hope is Prime Destinations, a disturbing place in Beverly Hills run by a mysterious figure known as the Old Man. He hires teens to rent their bodies to Enders—seniors who want to be young again. Callie, desperate for the money that will keep her, Tyler, and Michael alive, agrees to be a donor. But the neurochip they place in Callie's head malfunctions and she wakes up in the life of her renter, living in her mansion, driving her cars, and going out with a senator's grandson. It feels almost like a fairy tale, until Callie discovers that her renter intends to do more than party—and that Prime Destinations' plans are more evil than Callie could ever have imagined. . . .

My review: Starters is definitely one of the most exciting books I've read in a while. For fans of The Hunger Games, Enclave, Blood Red Road - this one's for you. I. Could. Not. Put. It. Down. The perfect combination of dystopia and mystery makes the plot fast-paced, exciting, and fascinating. The characters are both believable and likable. Lissa Price even manages to make the post-apocalyptic scenario realistic, a rare thing for novels hinging upon a disease that kills everyone between certain ages. 

Complaints? The romance felt like it was there just to have some romance. I couldn't connect to it at all and felt like it was superfluous. There's some random bits of Cinderella retelling that didn't really fit. Oh, and the book was absolutely great - until the ending went too far. I could tell the author was desperately trying to set up a sequel, but the final events came off as ridiculously improbable, incohesive, and rushed. It almost ruined what had been, for the most part, a story on the fast track to being one of my favorite YA dystopias. Still, the excitement of the first book and the cliff-hanger of a conclusion make it impossible not to continue with the series.



Giveaway: Thanks to Random Buzzers' Ambuzzador program, I have an extra ARC to give away to one lucky winner. I'm paying shipping, so, unfortunately, the giveaway is only open to US mailing addresses. Just leave a comment on this post to enter the giveaway. Following is not required but will gain an extra entry, as will tweeting about the giveaway. Ends 3/22/12.

39 comments:

  1. I really want that book:) I've heard so many good things about it!
    Anyway, I follow you (via GFC).
    Thanks for the giveaway!

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  2. Sounds great! I'm always up for a new dystopian =) (Follower via GFC)

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  3. Thanks so much!

    GFC follower Christina Kit.

    ccfioriole at gmail dot com

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  4. I tweeted https://twitter.com/#!/christinafiorio/status/172402280425984003

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  5. I would love to read this book. It sounds very good. Tore923@aol.com

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  6. No need to enter me as I'm in Canada but I just wanted to say that I've seen this one around and it does sound fantastic. I don't like when they rush the ending or try so hard to set up a sequel that they end up not doing justice to the current book. Still this one is on my wishlist to read one of these days.

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  7. I've heard a lot of great things about this book...thanks for the chance to win a copy

    bookflamereviews at gmail

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  8. I really, really, want this book bad. It sounds so great. Thank you for this chance to win.

    GFC: tpulliam

    https://twitter.com/#!/tpulliam2/status/172506272204210179

    pulliam_t@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  9. This looks so good. I would love to win a copy.

    GFC follower: LisaILJ

    leyser73 at gmail dot com

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  10. Thanks for the giveaway!
    GFC follower: Lexie@BookBug
    Tweeted at https://twitter.com/#!/LexieBookBug/status/173116609932705793
    lexie.bookbug at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  11. Thank you for the giveaway!
    dontkillkittens8(at)netscape(dot)net

    ReplyDelete
  12. Tweeted +1: https://twitter.com/#!/Malyjah/status/173451485261213696

    dontkillkittens8(at)netscape(dot)net

    ReplyDelete
  13. GFC follower: Kali Skittles
    dontkillkittens8(at)netscape(dot)net

    ReplyDelete
  14. Tweeted: https://twitter.com/#!/usagiko/status/173476321983348738
    GFC: usagi the golden witch
    email: usagiko at gmail dot com

    This is awesome - thanks!

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  15. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  16. Thank you for this fantastic giveaway! I would love to be entered!
    EMAIL: Shanaboo209 [at] YAHOO [dot] COM
    GFC: Sizzling Reads

    Shana @ Sizzling Reads

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  17. I have been DYING for this book! The cover is so creepy and it sounds so good.

    Thanks for doing the giveaway!
    E-mail: ashleylovesbooksblog [at] gmail [dot] com
    And I follow via GFC: Ashley

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  18. Hmm, it looks like it's well worth a read. Thanks for the giveaway!

    Follower: Manda
    liforda(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  19. Sounds quite interesting! Thanks!
    +1 GFC- Chey

    mcrs_venin(at)hotmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  20. Thanks for the amazing giveaway!
    +1 GFC: iLuvReadingTooMuch

    iliveforreading AT hotmail DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  21. Thanks for the giveaway--I followed via GFC (Cassie Frye). :D

    darcyette AT hotmail DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  22. Thanks for the giveaway!!!! I am following via GFC: Simply Kayla
    kayla.s.graham at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  23. Cannot wait to read this book! Thanks for the great giveaway!

    ~Paige @ Comfort Books
    http://paigebradish1996.blogspot.com/

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  24. I do not follow GFC BUT I did tweet :) I can't believe Random House gave you an extra ARC . . . I appreciate the chance to win a copy :)

    https://twitter.com/#!/fallen_MGRL/status/175981154070036482

    ReplyDelete
  25. thanks for the giveaway : )

    i follow gfc: alicia marie ezell
    email: ame1184 at gmail dot com

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  26. I loved Hunger Games, Blood Red Road, and Enclave, so I'm really glad you said fans of those would like this! The cover is so stunning and FREAKY. It intimidates me and I love a good challenge!

    GFC: Sallie Mazzur/saldelmaz

    Thanks so much for this giveaway opportunity!

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  27. Thank you for the opportunity to win this great ARC!

    I follow you on GFC: G. Donald Cribbs

    I Tweeted about this giveaway here: https://twitter.com/#!/gdcribbs/status/177131706304823299

    The cover is amazing, too! Thank you.

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  28. I've heard a lot of buzz about this book. I can't wait to read it.

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  29. I follow your blog
    & I tweeted about it: https://twitter.com/#!/kellinTV/status/178890706109214720
    And I want it so bad I'm going to write about how much I want it in this wonderful fictional narrative:

    I found out I was psychic at the age of seven. I wish I could say it was the best experience of my life (because hey, who doesn't want to be psychic?) but it wasn't. That was the day my mother tried to kill me.
    It was a bright morning; I remember that much because it was the first day I recall going to the park (and the last time I ever went). I was an only child at the time, and my father was overseas, so it was just my mother and I.
    She woke me early. There was a breakfast laid out on the table, but I never got the chance to eat it.
    I sat at the table and I could feel my vision changing, darkening. One moment I could see my mom across from me, and the next all I could see was blackness. I thought I had gone blind, or maybe even dead.
    "Mom," I called, my voice raising in pitch, "Mom? Mom!"
    "Yes, dear," there was a catch to her voice that I hadn't noticed until I played it back that night. If I had noticed then, maybe I could have stopped the events from unfolding.
    "Mom!"I tried to feel around, but my hands smacked into the glasses on the table. I felt the cold orange juice spill into my lap.
    "Are you o--?" her voice was chillingly calm, but it was pulled away from me, just as my vision had been.
    In fact, all my senses were gone. It didn't really matter to me at the time; my mind was racing too fast. I could only concentrate on one thing: not dying.
    My vision was the first to return, minutes later. Right away, I knew something was off. I was no longer at my kitchen table but at the park. With my mom.
    The strange thing was we weren't in the part of the park where children played. There was a thick forest that bordered the entire park, and we were in it.
    "Mom?" I said, noticing all my senses were back.
    She didn't seem to notice me.
    Then, I saw why. I wasn't me. Well, I was. But I mean, I wasn't. There was another me. An unconscious one.
    I cautiously stepped into view of my mom. She still didn't see me. I ran to her and touched her, but my arm just went through her body. What was happening?
    I saw my mom leave the forest without me (the other one). And I was lying on the dirt floor, barely breathing.
    I was pulled from the vision just as fast as I was thrown into it. I didn't get to see what had happened, and I was glad. I didn't know if I would have been able to stomach it.
    When I acclimated back into my normal settings, with myself in the kitchen chair and my mother across from me, I took a few deep breaths. I didn't know what happened, but I didn't think any of it could be true. My mother harm me? Impossible. Even if there was something wrong with me, I knew there would be no way.
    That is, until she asked if I wanted to go to the park today.

    As you can imagine, it took a long time before I could understand or even love my psychic abilities.
    But what would be worse than having your mother hate you would be getting a psychic vision wrong. And I just had one that showed me winning Starters by Lissa Price.


    haha :) Well, that was fun.

    email: kellinjohn @ gmail . com

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  30. I've heard a lot of great things about this book. I'd love to win.

    kebirch@hotmail.com

    Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  31. I can't wait to read this book! Thanks so much for the giveaway!

    alexisneuville23@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  32. I keep hearing about this book! It's everywhere! Can't wait to read it.

    GFC follower name: Shelby

    Tweet:
    https://twitter.com/#!/booknut4life/status/181050153275371520

    ReplyDelete
  33. Thanks for the chance to win!
    natasha_donohoo_8 at hotmail dot com

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  34. Would love to be entered!

    JeniNicole83(at)gmail(dot)com

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  35. I absolutely love this book and would love a hard copy.

    christina.ahn@gmail.com

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  36. Thanks for the Giveaway! This book has been on my to-read list for Months =D

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  37. Thanks for the giveaway

    I am also a follower.

    Froggy
    froggarita@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  38. I reallly need this book! I'm following

    And tweet: https://twitter.com/#!/ShaynaGier/status/182360998517276672

    ReplyDelete