Release date: February 16th 2016
The year is 2050 in Los Angeles and almost everyone now has a device called a djinni implanted in their head. It’s their connection to everything, the internet, their family, their bank account. Marissa spends most of her time on the net, hanging out, playing Overworld, partying with friends Anja and Sahara. When Anja introduces them to Bluescreen, a new drug that plugs right into a person’s djinni, Mari is uncomfortable, but it’s when she sees the effects the drug has that she knows something must be done to stop whoever invented it.
This was a book that I probably wouldn’t have picked up just based on the description. I hadn’t read anything by Dan Well before but I’ve heard good things about the Partials series. I get nervous when I start a book with so much technology-based world-building since I am definitely not very knowledgeable in that area. I usually do good to figure out my iPod and Kobo. This did make it hard for me to follow such a tech-heavy plot line but I was able to enjoy the interactions and friendships between the characters.
Marissa was both an interesting and frustrating character. She obviously cared about her friends and family, and she was extremely brave but she also was reckless and was blind to how her actions were affecting and influencing her family. All the teens involved were reckless, throwing themselves into real danger like it was a video game. There didn’t seem to be much growth to her character, more like there was moments of realization, and we have to wait for the next book to see if those realizations turn into growth.
I still find it hard to describe the overall plot since there was so much talk of gaming and coding and hacking and things I had zero idea about. The image I got was that everyone was like Harper from Andromeda just on an even high level of being absorbed with technology. Bao, who was my favourite character, was the only one without a djinni and that was probably why I found myself latching on to his character more than the others.
Even without quite getting the technology aspect, I could understand all the action that was happening. The book was packed with it and there were definitely some intense moments. The action and the relationships between the characters made up for the fact that I didn’t always grasp what was going on in the tech-side of the plot and made me want to keep reading.
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.