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Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Reboot - Amy Tintera [Review]

This review may contain spoilers.
Title: Reboot
Author: Amy Tintera
Publisher: HarperTeen
Series: Reboot #1
Release Date: May 7th 2013
Pages: 365
Rating: ★★★
Five years ago, Wren Connolly was shot three times in the chest. After 178 minutes she came back as a Reboot: stronger, faster, able to heal, and less emotional. The longer Reboots are dead, the less human they are when they return. Wren 178 is the deadliest Reboot in the Republic of Texas. Now seventeen years old, she serves as a soldier for HARC (Human Advancement and Repopulation Corporation).

Wren’s favorite part of the job is training new Reboots, but her latest newbie is the worst she’s ever seen. As a 22, Callum Reyes is practically human. His reflexes are too slow, he’s always asking questions, and his ever-present smile is freaking her out. Yet there’s something about him she can’t ignore. When Callum refuses to follow an order, Wren is given one last chance to get him in line—or she’ll have to eliminate him. Wren has never disobeyed before and knows if she does, she’ll be eliminated, too. But she has also never felt as alive as she does around Callum.

The perfect soldier is done taking orders.

Review:


I was so excited to read Reboot. The synopsis sounded awesome and I read many great reviews about it. Unfortunately it didn't fully live up to my expectations. It wasn't bad, but also not great.

Quick summary

This book is about Wren, a Reboot. A reboot is a person who died with a certain virus in his or her body, which makes that person come back to life. Only they are stronger and have less emotions than normal humans, thus great soldiers for organisation HARC. The longer they remain dead, they less human they are. And Wren has been dead the longest of all. She was the perfect soldier, until she starts training a new Reboot, Callum, who is still very human. He changes her views completely, but can she protect him and herself from the people at HARC who don't like emotional soldiers?

Characters

Because Wren has been dead for 178 minutes it is implied that she is cold and emotionless. She confirms this herself multiple times. But I never saw this in the book. From the very beginning she shows human emotions, even if it's just amusement at Callum's awkwardness. And further in the book when she trains with Callum she even gets all giggly and warm. It felt more like watching a normal teenager fall in love for the first time than a cold person feeling emotions for the first time. I don't know whether this is to show us she has been wrong all this time and she had emotions from the start, that HARC wants them to believe they're monsters OR it's just bad writing. I can't really believe that a few nice words from a boy could make her have emotions again, so I'll go with option 1.
And because Wren did have emotions, I liked her character. She was badass, but still cared for people. 

I wasn't really too fond of Callum. I don't know what it was with him, but he just annoyed me. I guess it were his confident and slightly cocky comments that threw me off. He kept saying things like 'I know you have the hots for me.' I just really dislike these kind of characters. But on the other hand he was really sensitive and in Reboots eyes weak and clumsy, those two sides of him were a bit confusing. 

There weren't really any memorable side characters, except Leb the friendly human guard and Eve the roommate, but they weren't developed either.

Romance

I didn't really like the romance and because it was quite a big part of the book, it lowered my overall opinion. It had very little build up and it felt like instalove. It also happened without obvious reason. Wren had never had feelings for someone, but after a few smiles and nice words from a not unattractive boy she got totally lovesick. Not really believable in my opinion. After that their love just felt too deep for the development it had had (which was little). Wren wanted to escape to keep him safe and I think I remember a few times in which she said she would do anything for him/couldn't live without him, something in that direction. No, just no. And the kissing was a bit overdone too. Every other page there was a kiss, not very interesting after the 10th one.

Plot

The book was fast paced and action packed. I liked the first part of the book in the HARC facility better than the part after they escaped. That last part was even more focused on the romance and got a little draggy. I wanted some action, not more kissing! The end wasn't really a cliffhanger, but it did leave me wanting to know more. 

Concept

The concept of the Reboots was awesome. That was what drew me to the book in the first place. I found the concept believable, although I would have liked a little more explanation of how the virus worked and why the Reboots didn't just fight back against the humans since they were much stronger. I always love these sciency explanations, but this book seemed more focused on other things. I guess I should just accept that this isn't a science sci-fi, but more a fiction sci-fi..

Worldbuilding

The worldbuilding felt a bit rushed. We were told a lot about HARC, their facilities, mysterious injections, Reboots, rebels etcetera, but I never felt like I really got it after the explanation. A more detailed, longer explanation of the whole world would have been better.
I also did not really understand how the real world worked in the book. Was it a dystopian world or just one with a big difference between rich and poor? This was never made clear to me. 

Conclusion

Well, it's the same thing I said in my review of Rush: a little less romance and a little more sci-fi would have improved the book massively. But it was still good enough for 3 stars.

Stars: 3 out of 5

15 comments:

  1. Damn I was really looking forward to this one. Although maybe if I have lower expectations I'll enjoy it more? It's a shame that you felt things were a bit rushed. Great review :)

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  2. It's a shame that you didn't like it more. I bought this book not too long ago and hope to read it some time, but your review doesn't really make me want to read it soon.

    Andreea

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  3. Maybe, I had really high expectations of this book because the synopsis sounded so awesome :(

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  4. I think I liked this book more than you did, but you make some valid points about Wren's character and the romance. And I really appreciated that the book didn't end in a cliffhanger, even though there is more of this story that could be told. I actually have no idea if there's a sequel in the works, but I guess I would be surprised if there wasn't one. ~Pam

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  5. Ugh I was so excited for this book and it keeps getting lukewarm reviews. My co-blogger Mari felt pretty similarly to you so I don't think I'll want to read this book. It has such an awesome premise though. Such a shame...

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  6. Aww I'm sorry this one didn't live up to your expectations!! I think I actually had lower expectations and then the book actually exceeded them. I can definitely see where you're coming from though! I liked Callum because for me, it was funny to watch him try to get under Wren's skin but I can totally see how people would be annoyed by it instead!

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  7. Reboot had such an amazing concept, as you state in your review. I did enjoy pulling for the underdog and rooting for Callum. I think I may have liked the book significantly more than you. However, the ending was abrupt. That part I didn't like. Nicely reviewed, I enjoyed reading your thoughts.

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  8. This was one of the books I was REALLY looking forward to, but once it was released, people started talking about how romance-focused it is, and I kind of gave up on buying it.

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  9. My rating was exactly the same as your Eveline, I went into this with such high hopes, but was a little disappointed by the romance, I think it came on a bit too sudden for me. But despite this I did end up enjoying this book somewhat. Great review!

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  10. I got given this as a present so I'm really excited to read it, shame you only gave it 3 stars but I can definitely see your reasoning. It actually makes me excited that there's more romance than scifi haha I love your review style! You covered everything that I was wondering about so thanks :)

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  11. Ha -- I liked the "more romance, less science" formula, but I can completely see how you feel… Thanks so much for stopping by! Jen @ YA Romantics

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  12. Ha...I hated this book, gave it 1 star >< It was just like you said -- lots of kissing and I was like "what? You call this book sci-fi" -__-

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  13. I've been looking for this book everywhere! It sounds so awesome.
    I am slightly less excited after reading your review, because I prefer science-y sci-fi myself. Sighs.
    Great review though!


    Kritika @ Snowflakes and Spider Silk

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  14. Reboot still sounds pretty good to me, maybe I'll wait to pick it up at the library. I love romance, so unless it too cheesy, I probably won't mind too much. :)

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  15. Awww... I loved Callum! Actually, I loved all of Reboot, but you make some great, well-substantiated points, particularly in regards to Wren's supposed lack of emotions. This was definitely something I noticed while reading the book, but I enjoyed the story so much, I chose to overlook it.

    Stephanie @ Inspiring Insomnia

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