Seven to Die

Seven to Die
by T.G. Roberts

Rating: 2.25/5

Positives:

– When the main character starts experiencing the changes, she has her best friend with her, right from the start. That sets the book apart from others so similar to it in oher aspects, where the main character is always alone and no one believes him/her.

– I liked how we got to experience how other characters felt, not just the main one. It gave another dimension to the book and I only wish it would have been more explored.

– I liked the beginning of the book, especially Jimmy. He made me smirk a couple of times.

Negatives:

– Some editing mistakes – Missing spaces between words; misspellings; some words missing, others in excess. The formatting of the chapters could have been better too. New chapter = new page is pretty basic and makes all the difference.

– Throughout the book, not enough explanations were given. Couple of examples:
When they first met Hassan:
First of all, when Lex wakes up and studies her surroundings it is said she recognizes it. How? Why? When has she ever been in a mountain bunker or seen one?
Then when Hassan approaches, Jimmy is surprised he knows his name. Why shouldn’t he? Lex called it several times with him around!
Later in the same chapter Hassan says Rina made her dad promise something up until a few days ago. Wasn’t she supposed to have left their lives years ago? They don’t even want to talk about her and yet this implies they stayed in touch. It didn’t occur to Lex to ask about that?

So I kind of felt like the author took the easy way out and the plot was quite flawed. This is also well present in the too convenient coincidences, like Sean wanting to move in with Nadine right after Henry moved out of Jimmy’s; both Jimmy and Lex finding (in the same night too) someone interesting they would love to date, others later in the book.

– The book just didn’t feel very realistic. Even though I laughed with Jimmy, some of his reactions weren’t very believable and were pretty cliché. Both he and Lex got used to her changes way too quickly. The progression of her skills just wasn’t portrayed well. For instance, it’s like one minute she didn’t know the first thing about fighting and the next she was snapping necks and whatnot (I could see the author trying but the end result just wasn’t good enough).

– Some things were just juvenile. The “oh my gosh” in different characters’ lines, the “because he’s our friend now”, not to mention the “I’m going to save everyone”s – all that along with the lack of context in some situations made this strike me as an immature book, and one that doesn’t allow for the reader to get really involved with the characters and their lives/experiences.

Conclusion:

The book started off a lot better than its development and ending. We got an interesting prologue and Lex was pretty real – her struggle to succeed in her studies so she can live up to everyone else in the family, torn between doing something she liked and was good at but wasn’t a good enough job, not the future she was supposed to have, wanting to keep her life but having to face her new responsibilities…
But even though the book was, at times, enjoyable and had more humour in it than I am used to in fantasy/horror/sci-fi, I think the plot could have been improved. A lot. There were too many inconsistencies for me to feel satisfied with it and take pleasure from reading it; the examples I mentioned were just the tip of the iceberg, really.

A couple more:
The whole reason why the action develops – Egil wanting to wipe them out. Why? He’s one of them! Because he’s crazy? Again, seems like the easy way out of explaining something, something that plays a huge part in the story too, heck it’s the whole reason for it, for the plot trigger. Because he wants to be the last one of the whole race standing? Bit of improvement but the whole ‘conquer the world’ thing got pretty old a few decades ago.

And what about Andrew? His real dad comes pick him up and suddenly it’s ok to kill people left and right, including the only parents he knew all his life, who raised him lovingly? It took watching his mother being murdered to trigger some kind of semi-significant response? Only then did he remember everything she did for him? Come on… There’s no evidence he was ever under some kind of mind control grip, it just makes no sense. Not much in this book makes sense or feels like serious thought was put into.

So my final conclusion is that if you would like to read about a(nother) girl who suddenly finds out she has powers and goes off discovering them with her gay bff, you should be able to enjoy it, as long as you don’t expect much from the plot, particularly a fairly plausible storyline where you feel like you are there with the characters and know them and where things are actually explained and make sense.

Read from October 20 to 23, 2014,
GR Review

I would like to thank the publisher and Netgalley for providing a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

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