Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Book Review: Altered by Marnee Blake

When "normal" ends, survival begins...
The sickness came on suddenly and violently. When it was done, waitress Blue Michaels was different in a really strange way. And the entire town of Glory was dead...except for her.

Only that's not exactly true. A handful of people made it, including U.S. Army Specialist Seth Campbell, who was caught in the wrong town at the worst time. He's fierce and protective, and way too good-looking. As much as they need a leader—as much as Blue wants to trust him—there are too many questions and not enough time for answers. Now they are hunted. But what their pursuers don't know is each of them has strange new powers. And they'll use their "gifts" to survive...no matter who stands in their way.
I am a big fan of the Science Fiction genre so when I was offered the chance to read Marnee Blake's New Adult Sci-Fi book, Altered I jumped at the chance.  I dived straight in and things started out well.  A deadly virus sweeps through a small American town leaving the inhabitants dead.  Only a handful of people who catch the virus survive.  After hours of pain and suffering, they wake up to find that they are not only alive but have developed superhuman powers.  The first chapter brought all of this to life in a very cool and vivid way but it was not to last.  The more I got into this book the more my original excitement about it fizzled away.
I really wanted to like this one, I truly did, but, in the end, I didn't like it at all.  I had several fairly substantial problems with it.  Firstly, I couldn't shake the feeling that the author didn't really know what she wanted this book to be.  It jumps between action, Science Fiction, emotional drama and romance at a dizzying speed.  I do not believe that books should be put in one genre, sometimes blurred lines are good but there has to be some kind of flow and that was distinctly lacking in Altered.  This jumping around led to me feeling like there was no substance to either the characters or the plot.  There are a fair few characters in this book and I felt like I knew none of them.  They felt more like shadowy stereotypes than real fleshy characters.  There was no personality, no individuality and nothing for me to relate to in any of them.
I wasn't particularly fond of the writing either.  It is fine to have unrealistic aspects of your book, it is Science Fiction after all, but for it to work the creator has to be able to sell it.  They have to find a way to make their audience suspend belief.  Marnee Blake couldn't do that for me. The descriptions of the powers and the action sequences did not work at all.  I found them awkward and at times bizarre.
There were some good ideas here and I do admire Marnee Black for taking a massive swing at it, but something was lost in translation and it fell short of my expectations.

2 star

Find out more:

Published December 28th 2015 by Entangled: Embrace.
A free copy of this book was provided in exchange for an honest review.  Image courtesy of Goodreads.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for commenting!