Monday, September 17, 2012

Rachel Rambles About What's Left of Me

First off, I'd just like to apologize for my absence on this blog lately. School just started again, and it's taking up ALL OF MY TIME. Which sucks. But anyway, I'm trying to get back into my school/homework/read/blog/sleep routine again, so hopefully I'll be able to post a lot more.

What's Left of Me by Kat Zhang
From Goodreads:
I should not exist. But I do.

Eva and Addie started out the same way as everyone else—two souls woven together in one body, taking turns controlling their movements as they learned how to walk, how to sing, how to dance. But as they grew, so did the worried whispers. Why aren’t they settling? Why isn’t one of them fading? The doctors ran tests, the neighbors shied away, and their parents begged for more time. Finally Addie was pronounced healthy and Eva was declared gone. Except, she wasn’t . . .

For the past three years, Eva has clung to the remnants of her life. Only Addie knows she’s still there, trapped inside their body. Then one day, they discover there may be a way for Eva to move again. The risks are unimaginable-hybrids are considered a threat to society, so if they are caught, Addie and Eva will be locked away with the others. And yet . . . for a chance to smile, to twirl, to speak, Eva will do anything.

This book is awesome. It captured my attention at first with the amazing cover (seriously, Harper has the best covers ever) and then the awesome-sounding summary. TWO SOULS IN ONE BODY, PEOPLE. How can that not be weird and fascinating and intriguing and amazing?

Instead of being told from both girls' perspectives, like I thought it would be, Eva is the sole narrator of this book. This is especially interesting since Addie is the dominant soul, and Eva doesn't even have control of their body.

(Some quick background stuff: In the world of What's Left of Me, everyone is born as a hybrid, which means two souls share a body. For the first few years of your life, you share control over your body with another person, your brother or sister. Then, around age six or seven or so, one of the souls "settles" which means they just kind of go away forever, leaving the other soul all alone in their body. That soul then becomes a totally normal person. Most people go through this settling process, but there are some exceptions, like Eva and Addie.)

I loved seeing Eva's evolution throughout this novel. She starts out as a kind of ghost, living in Addie's head and invisible to everyone but Addie. As the book goes on, she slowly begins to gain control and become Addie's equal, like she used to be when the girls were younger. There was one point where I noticed Eva refer to "her arm/leg/body/etc." instead of "our arm/leg/body/etc." and I think that was such a turning point for her.
The characters in this book are all brilliant. I adored Hally and Devon (and, uh, you know, those other people. If you've read the book, you know who I'm talking about. :D) and Kitty. The creepiness factor when they were all at the clinic was through the roof. SO CREEPY. Evil scientists and doctors operating on children. It's so wrong, but SO GOOD.

The world this book takes place in is so original and scary. Hybrids are a normal part of life. That is, until you reach settling age. If there are two souls in a body after settling age has passed, THE EVIL SCIENTIST DOCTOR PEOPLE DO NOT APPROVE. So they make the hybrid people go to counseling and doctors and hospitals and clinics and basically anything they can to get that extra soul out of them because ew that's so unnatural.

What's Left of Me surprised me with how good it is. The plot is epic, the characters are lovable, the stakes are high, and the world is fascinating. I highly recommend this book.


1 comment:

  1. I'm so glad to hear you thought this one was great. I just got it in the mail and I'm SO excited to start :D