Fantastic dystopian concept with moral qualms, heart thumping action, tragedy & love, but at the end, I was left disappointed. Government corruption was alluded to but never addressed, moral questions were raised but never processed. The main character contemplated these issues then they were forgotten, lost in a love story.
A great dystopian novel wouldn't gloss over and pretend the government corruption is acceptable or that the main character is perfectly content to have complied with that corruption.
Here are the facts:
1) The government brings together 2 couple's DNA to create twins (called alts) who are separated at birth and raised in completely different environments, supposedly because there is not enough resources for both alts- though parents seem to be able to register for as many children as they want (West's parents had 4).
2) Each alt is raised and at the age of ten they begin training in weapons & defense which is when they can officially become 'active' in their assignment to find & murder their alt at which point they become a 'complete.' Completes receive better treatment than those who are 'Incomplete,' almost as if they are second rate humans until they have reached Complete status.
3) The Alt who murders first is the more perfect version and the one who dies is undeserving of Complete status. However, the main character struggles with this idea since 2 of her siblings were killed by their Alts and she can't process how they could have been undeserving, and their lives meaningless.
4) The main character then overcomes her feelings of undeserving, conforms to the government's rules, completes her assignment as per activation instructions, and lives happily ever after with her love interest despite her entire family and his having been killed due to this practice.
Probably not. Her ideas are amazing, but she left me with a feeling of unresolved tension. Important moral questions were obvious in her book Dualed, where twins are required to hunt down and kill one another for the right to be a 'complete' member of society, but she focused on the love interest of the story.
I enjoyed Cord. Alicyn did a great job of voicing characters' emotions during her reading which drew me into the story.
This is one of those books. The one you devour in a day, tell your friend to read, and hope it wasn't just the tasty chocolate you were eating at the time that caused it to seem so darn amazing. But then your friend finishes it and you completely geek out together on how fantastic it was so you continue to recommend it even more enthusiastically to the rest of your friends. Eventually all your friends have read it and geeked out, then you find out....they're making a movie! Yep, one of those books. If you haven't read/listened to it yet, you should.
Content Concerns? Although many young adult novels contain drugs, sex, self-abuse, swearing, etc., this book contains none of that.
I would selectively recommend this to avid readers from 13 to 15.
And I would highly recommend this for any reader (reluctant or avid ) from 16-25.
I feel she softened Triss' character a bit, in a good way, from how I would have read it.
Mere pure enthusiastic excitement.
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