Saturday, 20 October 2012

#164 Book Review: What's Left of Me

What's Left of Me
Release Date: October 1st 2012
Author: Kat Zhang
Publisher: Harper Collins Australia
Source: Publisher for Review
Format: Paperback
Where to Buy:  Fishpond | Booktopia
More Info: Goodreads
Summary 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.
Cover:
Striking! It completely reflects the whole book. I love how we can only see part of the girl face as if her other half is fading away and the grey theme is really suitable!

Story:

Two souls interwoven to one body, recessive and dominant. Which one will survive?

Kat Zhang's What's Left of Me is one of the most unique and fresh story out of the 2012 debut novels I've read so far. With its creative premise, Kat Zhang introduces you to the world of hybrids, people who have two souls within them. But in this world, hybrids are forbidden. Through What's Left of Me, Kat takes you into the journey of Eva and Addie's life from Eva's perspective.

Souls are one of the most intricate ideas out there. Questions are still lingering about the fact whether or not soul exists or not. But Kat extends this question by creating a world where two souls exist within one body. Can you imagine living a life where another soul, your half can talk to you? Eva is the recessive soul while Addie is the dominant. When they are supposed to settle down, meaning that the dominant should have taken over the recessive, they didn't. Eva still exists within Addie even though she no longer has the power to move and speak with their body. Kat's writing beautifully captures Eva's feeling of being unwanted, helpless and struggling for the chance to live. Kat explores the theme of humanity with a twist of dystopian. Even though I'm a huge fan of romance, I was so immersed into the brilliant premise that I didn't even notice the romance was barely there. Although, towards the ending, the romance felt a little rushed but it didn't affect me at all. I wasn't looking for the romance. I was looking for a deeper insight into the world Kat has astoundingly created.

Characters:
While the premise was brilliant, what I truly adored from Kat's writing was her ability to beautifully and intensely capture Eva's thoughts and feelings throughout the book. At first, I couldn't imagine what life is like for Eva, sitting in the corner watching Addie live through life without her taking part in it. Slowly but steadily, Kat explores Eva's mind, differentiating her from Addie even though they are both in the same body. I felt terribly sad for Eva. I couldn't blame her for jumping on the chance where she could finally be able to control their body. While Addie felt a little selfish at times, I was glad to find that she truly cared for Eva. The bond between two souls are so much deeper, perhaps even more than siblings. Besides Eva and Addie, it was really enjoyable to read about other hybrids too such as Lissa and Hally (Eva and Addie's friend) and Ryan and Devon, (Lissa and Hally's brother). The romance is between Eva and Ryan and it must have felt awkward for Addie since she does not feel anything for Ryan. The antagonists in this book are really evil! They treated the hybrids as though they are abomination and must be destroyed. Nevertheless, I think all the characters are well-written!

Overall:
Can you imagine having another soul live within your body? What's Left of Me is a beautifully written novel with a unique premise, exploring the intricate concept of souls and also humanity. Kat's writing entrancingly captures the feeling of being unwanted, recessive which takes on a strong shift to hope. With a touch of dystopian, What's Left of Me is the first exciting novel in the Hybrid Chronicles!
4 Forget-Me-Not flowers for What's Left of Me! (Well, it's actually more like 4.5! )
Thank you Harper Collins Australia for the review copy!

Check out the book trailer below!

18 comments:

  1. EEEEEEEEEE!!! CELINEEEEEE!! THIS SOUNDS SO AMAZING, SO UNIQUE!!! I love how this is the most unique book you've read in 2012 :) heheee I think I'll love it too<3 AWESOMEEEE review CELINEEE! I cannot wait to read this!

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  2. I really love everything about this book. The cover is amazing and your review made me love it even more! Amazing!! :)

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  3. I liked this one as well and I agree about the romance...I am curious to see now it is going to play out, especially since Addie does not share Eva's feelings for Ryan. This book gave me a lot to think about and I am looking forward to the next one!

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  4. Great review, Celine! I also thought the bond between Addie and Eva was generally more complicated and deeper than sibling relationships. The author portrayed it really well. :) I'm glad you enjoyed this book too!

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  5. Fantastic review, Celine!! I'm reading this at the moment and I so agree with you about Kat's beautiful writing and the way she explores the relationship between Addie and Eva. It's such a unique idea and one that I imagine would have been at first difficult to slip into writing, given that the narrator is sharing a body with another, and she's not even the dominant soul. Yet Kat writes it so... effortlessly!

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  6. I believe I haven't heard anything negative about this book. I'm so excited to read it. The whole concept fascinated me from the beginning and after reading your review, I want to dive into it right away. Great! :)

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  7. I'm so glad you enjoyed this one, Celine! I've heard mostly fantastic things about it and I love the concept, but I somehow don't think it's the book for me. Hmmm...we'll see! I absolutely adore this review though, dear! Fantastic!(:

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  8. EEP. This book has been on my wishlist. though I've heard mixed reviews about this book most of it are great, and this review is just making me so excited! I need to get my hands on this book soon! x

    ficbookreviews.com

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  9. This is a frightening concept to me, Celine. Wonderful review and that cover is unusual. I didn't notice the profile of the girl at first. :)

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  10. OMG! Lovely review, Celine! This book seems so creepy, and yes, frightening, but also really fascinating. The cover is SO gorgeous, I completely agree. Can't wait to read it! Thanks for the great review, doll! <3

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  11. What a beautiful cover! *_* The idea of two souls in one body has me intrigued! Great review, Celine. <3

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  12. Aaaaah, I'm reading this at the moment, Celine! I'm about half way through, and I had to put it down because it's so TENSE it was stressing me out!

    It is SUCH an amazing book, and 'm so glad you loved it so much! THe idea and the premise is just WOW :O

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  13. Awesome review, Celine <3. this looks so good. amazing cover as well.

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  14. Awesome review, Celine! I honestly haven't read a negative review of this book. I've been thinking about purchasing a copy, so I'm glad you loved this one too. Though...I'm still having second thoughts because this sounds like heavy drama.

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  15. Celinee. Awesome review! You make it sound like such a creative and well constructed world. And that it is reflective of themes of humanity! Wow! Can't wait to read this one <3

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  16. Enjoyed your review, I really liked this one too, Kat Zhang does a brilliant job defining two distinct personalities in one body. Can't wait for the next installment :)

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  17. I started this one a long time ago and I loved the Prologue. Unfortunately I was not in the mood of reading about souls so I put it down for a while. Now your review really encourages me to pick it up! Wonderful review my dear! Thanks for reminding me how meaningful this book seems to be :)

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  18. I agree with you about the marvelous, creative concept and wonderfully intricate characters, yet somehow this book didn't grab me as much as I thought it would! I'm positive it was because of the sketchy world- building... I consider it to be quite crucial in books and was quite disappointed to see that it was lacking in this. :(

    Anyhow, I'm REALLY pleased to see that you enjoyed this book (more than me, ha) and fabulous review, Celine! And no, I can't imagine having another soul inside my body, although the idea is pretty sweet. :p

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