Monday, May 20, 2013

Review: One, by Leigh Ann Kopans

(I received an e-ARC of ONE from the author back in February. Now that my life is less busy and the release date for ONE is approaching, I'm actually getting around to posting a review.)

Sixteen-year-old Merrin Grey would love to be able to fly – too bad all she can do is hover.

If she could just land an internship at the Biotech Hub, she might finally figure out how to fix herself. She busts her butt in AP Chem and salivates over the Hub’s research on the manifestation of superpowers, all in hopes of boosting her chances.

Then she meets Elias VanDyne, another One, and all her carefully crafted plans fly out the window. Literally. When the two of them touch, their Ones combine to make them fly, and when they’re not soaring over the Nebraska cornfields, they’re busy falling for each other.

Merrin's mad chemistry skills land her a spot on the Hub's internship short list, but as she gets closer to the life she always wanted, she discovers that the Hub’s purpose is more sinister than it has always seemed. Now it’s up to her to decide if it's more important to fly solo, or to save everything - and everyone - she loves

Cover of ONE by Leigh Ann Kopans
Cover: Very pretty. My favourite part is that the wings look like organic chemistry diagrams.

One sentence review: ONE builds a super-neat future world, with interesting & lovable characters - who are frustratingly not at all genre savvy.

This book is for you if:
  • You like sci-fi set in the near future - but with a what-if twist
  • Your favourite subjects are science and chemistry 
  • You think a couple making awesome music together is hot and/or adorable
This book isn't for you if:
  • You don't want to see where the story is going miles before the characters do
  • You would be triggered by [non-detailed SPOILER - highlight to read] coercive science experiments
Full review:
The premise of this book is what attracted me to it. Superpowered people are cool, but half-superpowered people? That's something I haven't seen before, and amazingness waiting to happen!

For the most part, ONE lived up to my high expectations. I loved the characters, and soaked up every bit of info about the new world and it's history that I could. The worldbuilding was really well done.

I was a bit disappointed by how easy it was to spot some of the plot coming - it made watching smartypants Merrin not see it all the more frustrating. Still, none of that stopped the plot from being good, and it was hard to blame Merrin for having blinders on when when she had every reason in the world to not WANT to see.

As for the romance, Merrin and Elias have serious chemistry, especially when they're rocking it out. Merrin is a drummer - how cool is that? - and she and Elias have fantastic music making scenes.

The ending of ONE is epic and wonderful without being a cliffhanger. Enough is resolved so you don't have to jump up and down and curse the author, but there's plenty more adventure and story to be found. (And the sequel, TWO, is coming out in October.)

ONE is coming out on Tuesday, June 11th. In the mean time, if you want to read the first eight chapters in comic book form, check out the author's blog, which will have links to the comics starting Tuesday, May 28th.

Leigh Ann Kopans' website

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