Monday, July 23, 2018
The Similars by Rebecca Hanover
I did NOT see that last twist coming! That is something you hardly ever hear me say. Most books I have figured out the twist well before I've gotten there or I at least have a pretty good guess I'm waiting to confirm. When this one was revealed I was truly surprised and it hadn't occurred to me at all so that was very exciting! Despite that, the book overall was fine for me, but not great. Emma and Levi's relationship arc was the same as any other doomed lover affair - hate, forced together, discover the other is not so bad after all, get close, obstacle to love with one of them misunderstanding what's happening and the other not explaining, resolution of the obstacle, deepest love story every told, self-sacrifice. Yawning as I type. It was not a bad love story, just nothing new happening there to capture my attention. As for the rest of the plot...
It kept me turning pages quickly to see if there was some answer to the many, many questions:
What are the Similars missions?
What are their special abilities?
Why do they have special abilities? Are they NOT human?
Why is the school allowing the anti-clone protests when they preach open-mindedness?
What does Oliver's last message to Emma mean?
What does the message in the book from Pru's father mean?
Why is Emma's father so distant from her?
Is Pru dead?
Do The Ten do anything meaningful or do they just meet at midnight to haze and harass each other?
Why would the principal allow Emma to just leave the lab after what she saw? And why isn't Emma terrified for her life after that weird encounter?!
And more, not all of which are answered in this book. It was all a little too much without enough closure on all points. Despite Emma apparently being extremely smart since she placed in "the Ten", she doesn't seem particularly adept at figuring much out. Like I said, I was reading quickly because I was caught up in the story despite the flaws I kept finding.
Finally, there were just too many characters to keep track of once all the parents became involved. I'm not sure how to fix that since the past is relevant to the present, but something needs to be done so that I can tell who has grudges from the past and which parents are supposed to hate each other now. At least give some names that stand out or just call the parents Mr. So and So, Mrs. So and So. But Jago and Jaeger? And then the dinner on parents' weekend - Lord help me!