Review of DUALED by Elsie Chapman
Still looking for new books from new authors in 2013? Then put DUALED by Elsie Chapman on the list. This is Chapman's first novel in an exciting dsytopian world called Kersh. You can visit Chapman's website here to learn more about DUALED (release date February 26th, 2013).
So what's DUALED about? Do I have a sample chapter lined up for you? Read on, readers, read on.
Plot Summary: You or your Alt? Only one will survive.
The city of Kersh is a safe haven, but the price of safety is high. Everyone has a genetic Alternate—a twin raised by another family—and citizens must prove their worth by eliminating their Alts before their twentieth birthday. Survival means advanced schooling, a good job, marriage—life.
Fifteen-year-old West Grayer has trained as a fighter, preparing for the day when her assignment arrives and she will have one month to hunt down and kill her Alt. But then a tragic misstep shakes West’s confidence. Stricken with grief and guilt, she’s no longer certain that she’s the best version of herself, the version worthy of a future. If she is to have any chance of winning, she must stop running not only from her Alt, but also from love . . . though both have the power to destroy her.
Elsie Chapman's suspenseful YA debut weaves unexpected romance into a novel full of fast-paced action and thought-provoking philosophy. When the story ends, discussions will begin about this future society where every adult is a murderer and every child knows there is another out there who just might be better.
I have to admit that when I first started this book, I was expecting the story to go in a COMPLETELY different direction. I like dystopian novels where the hero or heroine goes against the system. Be prepared; in this book, the main character plays into the gruesome, bloody system. If you don't like reading about child killings, then this book isn't for you. More intense than HUNGER GAMES? In some ways, yes.
*SPOILER ALERT* Main character, West Grayer, both kills her Alt and becomes an assassin for hire. People she kills includes youngsters, like a girl wearing friendship bracelets. Does this make it hard to like Grayer? In my opinion, yes. Did I stop reading? No. I HAD to find out how far Grayer would go.
Now that I've finished the book and had a chance to mull it over, here are my thoughts: 1. Elsie Chapman did something different. And that's what all the publishers and readers are looking for. 2. She created a very unique (and very scary) world for her characters to live in. 3. She kept me turning the pages. Up until the very end, I was sure Grayer would find a way to beat the system, to start a rebellion--but hey, maybe that's the plot of book 2.
So if you're looking for something daring and different, and if you don't mind gore, then pick up a copy of DUALED.
Have you read Chapman's first book? What are your thoughts on it? And as always, if you have an upcoming book that's not yet been published that you'd like me to review, please leave a comment. I'll do my best to track a copy down.