Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers
Release Date: February 26th, 2013
Genre: Dystopian Thriller
Source: e-ARC via NetGalley
Challenge(s): Debut Author, Dystopian, Netgalley
I’ve been waiting so long for Dualed. Literally for months I’ve been dying to read it, so when I got approved on NetGalley, there may have been some screaming involved. While I wasn’t disappointed, it was drastically different from what I was expecting.
Going in I was under the impression that it would be a fast-paced, thrilling, butt-kicking adventure. The synopsis even says “fast-paced action”,but after the first chapter things slow down. Luckily this worked out better than if it had been fast throughout. Instead it was intense and focused. Similar to The Hunger Games, there’s lots of thinking and strategizing, as opposed to constant bloodshed.
I really liked West for the most part. I’ve heard quite a few reviewers complain that she’s a weak heroine, but I think that’s what I liked most about her; the fact that she was flawed. Throughout the book she’s at war with herself, doubting her abilities. But in the end she overcomes that struggle.
One thing I was disappointed by was the world building. Elsie built this disturbing world, but never went into very deep detail about it. I had so many questions before I ever started the book, and came out with even more than I’d started with. I was also expecting the plot to focus more on West possibly discovering the history and uncovering some jaw-dropping secrets along the way, but the story went a completely different direction.
The writing was outstanding. It was strong and eloquent. Each word held meaning. For a debut author, Elsie Chapman did an outstanding job. It’s not very often that I stop to reread passages, but that was frequently happening with Dualed. It was thought-provoking in an unexpected way, and helped me see things in a new light.
I really love this cover. Everything about it sends chills down my spine, especially the shadow. Creepy! And it’s a great portrayal of the overall feel of the book. I also like the intense font and color of the name, which make it pop against the dark and dreary background.