Book Review A Book Recipe for
Aberrant by Ruth Silver
- One part Divergent Series by Veronica Roth
- One part Hunger Games Series by Suzanne Collins
- One part Matched Series by Ally Condie
Take above ingredients. Mix as well as you would like. Layout on 240 (or so pages) and publish.
Now wait, I know it takes more than that to write a book. There is a lot of blood, sweat and tears that go into creating a world and publishing a novel, but it was hard for me not to see the glaring pulls from some of the most popular young adult dystopian novels.
There is potential here. I didn’t throw down this book after 50 pages in disgust because something didn’t sit right spatially in my head. The idea of women being infertile was intriguing, but put together haphazardly. It just needed more time in the lab.
While my brain patiently waited for more development on how the women in Aberrant became infertile and how exactly the government intervened to help them conceive, I struggled with the poor editing of the book. This lead to confusion and a lot of page flipping to re-read. On page 34, Olivia’s mother (who disappears from the book completely) explains how Olivia came into the world.
“I went to one of the doctors who helped eighteen years ago. I was concerned with the marriage ceremony because I thought you might unintentionally conceive a child.” … “The doctor betrayed us. She’s the only one I can’t think who would do this.”
And then just a few pages later, Olivia explains this to Josh, the love of her life.
“I’m different, Joshua. My mother didn’t win the lottery to have a daughter. Actually, she did win the lottery, but only because she had to. It was rigged because she was already pregnant with me.”
I was scratching my head for a bit. I had to sit back and put the pieces together. From page 34 to page 41, there was nothing to lead the reader to that revelation. Olivia just threw it out there. What Olivia said does not match her mother’s story. How did she jump to that conclusion? There are seeds of a secret there and I wanted someone to spill the beans. So I kept reading.
Was it a mistake to finish Aberrant? Maybe. I was anxious to get my questions answered…why were the women infertile? Who helped Olivia’s parents rig the lottery? Was Olivia’s father REALLY dead? None of the my questions were answered, but for some reason I was sucked into this book and insisted on finishing it.
Finish the book, I did. Ms. Silver shows promise. I finished the book despite it not answering any of my questions. I connected with Olivia because of the loss of her father. There are some intriguing aspects about this world that I want to know more about. But in order for me to continue with the series, I would need to know that the remaining novels went through some extensive editing and clean up. The world also needs to be properly mapped out (walking through a tunnel in one night when it normally takes 2 days to traverse it. Seriously?). The world of Aberrant shows promise. The author needs to trust herself and stop borrowing so much from other authors. With some careful editing by outside sources and more time building the world and its rules, Aberrant could be a truly wonderful addition to the world of young adult dystopian fiction. But until that happens, I’ll be moving along.
The Quick Book Review
AberrantAuthor: Ruth Silver
Published on: April 28, 2013
Series: Aberrant #1
Genres: dystopian or apocalyptic, young adult
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My Rating: Thumbs Down