Five years ago, Wren Connolly was shot three times in the chest. After 178 minutes she came back as a Reboot: stronger, faster, able to heal, and less emotional. The longer Reboots are dead, the less human they are when they return. Wren 178 is the deadliest Reboot in the Republic of Texas. Now seventeen years old, she serves as a soldier for HARC (Human Advancement and Repopulation Corporation).
Wren’s favorite part of the job is training new Reboots, but her latest newbie is the worst she’s ever seen. As a 22, Callum Reyes is practically human. His reflexes are too slow, he’s always asking questions, and his ever-present smile is freaking her out. Yet there’s something about him she can’t ignore. When Callum refuses to follow an order, Wren is given one last chance to get him in line—or she’ll have to eliminate him. Wren has never disobeyed before and knows if she does, she’ll be eliminated, too. But she has also never felt as alive as she does around Callum.
The perfect soldier is done taking orders.
Thanks to HarperTeen and Edelweiss for this eARC! This title is now available.
Actually, I’m not sure if I should give this one four stars or four and a half stars. 4.25 stars isn’t in my rating system, per se, but if it was that’s what I’d rate this book. Here’s why:
The book opens up with screaming. Lots of screaming. Wren one-seventy-eight is out on a mission, and her target won’t stop screaming. Wren really hates the screaming, but she loves the chase. She’s a Reboot, a human who came back from the dead–no longer human, but colder and stronger. Her number stands for how many minutes she was dead before she Rebooted. The larger the number, the less the humanity the Reboot has left. Her number is almost unheard of–her humanity is basically shot. Her larger number also gives her the privilege of training new recruits, and against her better judgement she takes on Callum twenty-two–a Reboot with a number so low he’s still practically human. He reminds her of her humanity, and gives her new purpose–purpose that goes against everything HARC has taught her.
In the beginning of the book, Wren is the most badass character ever. She’s supposed to have no humanity left, but she tries really, really hard to be a kind person to her roommate, Ever, who after three years still believes that there is something left in Wren. Wren’s attempts to create a human-like interaction with Ever while cleaning the floor with everyone she comes across was absolutely fantastic and it made me fall in love with her character.
When Callum enters the scene, however, I just started to get frustrated. Wren was still a really awesome character, but I thought her humanistic reaction to Callum happened way too fast after 5 years of having no emotions. It’s like if Spock all the sudden walked onto the bridge of the Enterprise one day with pink hair and started singing Call Me Maybe. Her feelings for Callum seem to have originated in his … smile? And the fact that there was “something about him.” Given that her character was so amazingly fantastic without him in the picture, I felt cheated and annoyed with the abrupt character change.
The rest of the story revolves around Callum way too much for my taste, but Wren does go back to her utter fantasticness. Sometimes I think authors just pawn off flaws onto their characters to say, look she’s not perfect!, but with Wren… gosh. For a character who believed she was completely emotionless, I connected with her far more than any other emotional character in the book. Tintera did a superb fantastic job writing her. I felt for every one of Wren’s struggles, especially the ones within herself.
The story’s plot, again, revolves around Callum as a catalyst, but at least it never stops moving. Wren starts the book running and basically never stops. There is action scene after action scene, broken up by cute couple moments that last briefly before HERE WE GO AGAIN! When there’s a relationship going on that I’m not that invested in, I find this the BEST way for these plots to go.
I picked up this book after swearing I was done with dystopians, and I’m glad I did. Missing out on this fast paced book and the character of Wren would have been a real shame. I know some people are done with dystopians now on principle, but if you think there is a chance at all that you would read another again, this one goes at the top of the list! The only huge problem I have with it is the relationship/romance part, but … that tends to always be my issue with books, because I’m jaded with ya love at first sight stuff. Further into the book, the relationship does redeem itself and I certainly don’t mind it.
I just like it better when Wren has a gun and is being badass–is that weird?
Anyways. I recommend this book!
And as a weird side note, this book is already in the tubes to become a movie in 2015 so…read this before it gets movie cool!