ARC Review: “MILA 2.0” by Debra Driza

Mila 2.0MILA 2.0 (MILA 2.0 #1) by Debra Driza

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Mila 2.0 is the first book in an electrifying sci-fi thriller series about a teenage girl who discovers that she is an experiment in artificial intelligence.

Mila was never meant to learn the truth about her identity. She was a girl living with her mother in a small Minnesota town. She was supposed to forget her past—that she was built in a secret computer science lab and programmed to do things real people would never do.

Now she has no choice but to run—from the dangerous operatives who want her terminated because she knows too much and from a mysterious group that wants to capture her alive and unlock her advanced technology. However, what Mila’s becoming is beyond anyone’s imagination, including her own, and it just might save her life.

Mila 2.0 is Debra Driza’s bold debut and the first book in a Bourne Identity-style trilogy that combines heart-pounding action with a riveting exploration of what it really means to be human. Fans of I Am Number Four will love Mila for who she is and what she longs to be—and a cliffhanger ending will leave them breathlessly awaiting the sequel.

3 ½ stars

Thanks to Katherine Tegen Books and Edelweiss for this eARC! This title is now available.

I was pretty excited about this premise; I’ll be honest with you. I don’t read much scifi, and this seemed right up my alley. Then it begins like this:

Mila is a normal girl who has a hard time fitting in at school while trying to deal with the loss of her father, who was really close to her. Her mother has turned distant and her best friends are so mercurial they may not as well be called friends at all. (Actually, her “best friends” are so annoying that I really began to dislike them vehemently and hoped that whenever this robot thing actually broke they’d get trapped in a burning building or something.) But then she meets Hunter, the boy who finally gets her, and she starts to fall in love. Sound familiar? It should, because it’s a pretty basic plotline.

But oh, by the way, Mila isn’t human. She’s a robot.

Though it took a really look time to get to that point, which we were made aware of in the blurb, I was really hoping that Driza was going to take this opportunity to rip away from the basic young adult plotline she had going in the beginning of the book. For a while, I thought I was going to be right. When Mila finally starts coming into her robot own, she kicks serious butt. Hearing her android brain in her head was also really cool.

However, then certain events happen that I can’t tell you because it would be spoilers, and the plotline begins to re-conform a little bit. Oh yeah, the plot is still plenty crazy, but I can sniff out a cliché a mile away and this would has one coming on like a freight train. I can’t tell you what or I’d get in trouble for being spoilery. But I can tell you I’ll be forehead slapping coming the next book.

That said, however, I do like how Driza plays with the concept of “What is humanity?” The second half of the book is pretty darn amazing. This isn’t a book for softies, either. It isn’t graphic, but it isn’t light fluff. Mila. Kicks. Serious. Butt. And receives a bunch in return.

This all, however, fell apart from me in the end. In the second half of the book, there is a person who’s identity is “secret.” I have to be vague here, bear with me. But I put “secret” in quotation marks for a reason. The first second this person was mentioned, I knew who it was. How Mila is unaware I have no idea, but in the end I just kept shouting, “STUPID. STUPID. STUPID.” Mila can take out guys double her size but can’t put two and two together multiple times in this book, actually, and I just kept getting frustrated, and that kept me from loving it completely.

In summation, though, I would still recommend that you give this book a try if it’s something you think you’d be interested in. Driza doesn’t do a bad job in the slightest. I read this book straight through in one go because I was invested in the pacing of the plot. It’s certainly action packed! However, that said, if you’re on the fence about it, I wouldn’t be pushing you to pick it up.

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6 thoughts on “ARC Review: “MILA 2.0” by Debra Driza

  1. I really wanted to love this one, but I didn’t. The concept is great, but it was SO SLOW in the middle AND the fact that she chose to just push aside a “main character” after the first few chapters made me mad. And the ending was just BLAH! I will probably read the next one in the hopes it is better.

  2. If you read this (pretty long) book all in one go, despite these issues, then it must be seriously entertaining! Your observations are dampening my excitement (I can’t stand a character who is oblivious), but I’m still very excited about reading it.

  3. YvonneJ says:

    I really liked the cover and title of this book when I first saw it so I tagged it for my TBR. I’ve been reading a lot more scifi recently so I think I’m going to go ahead and give this a try but it may take a while before I get to it.

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