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4.0 out of 5 starsA book that won’t disappoint!
Reviewed in the United States on October 17, 2019
A futuristic world that doesn’t allow paper and has changed how we view words and history. Meri, the main character, mom dies in an accident, but she just can’t accept it. She can’t let go of a nagging feeling which leads her to uncover hidden secrets of the city.
3.0 out of 5 starsFirst book in a new YA dystopian duology!
Reviewed in the United States on October 3, 2019
Verify is the first book in a new YA futuristic/dystopian duology.
I have previously read a bunch of books by this author, including her popular The Testing series. So I was excited to see the author's newest book.
The narrator of this book is 16 year old Merriel/Meri (1st person POV). The story takes place in Chicago some time in the future (maybe 70+ years).
This book starts shortly after Meri's mom has died. The world is very different than the one we live in now. Paper is obsolete. There is no travel. Almost no guns. The people believe everything that they are told.
Meri is an artist and her mother was an artist too. Meri is trying to figure out about the last paintings that her mom painted.
The beginning of this book was very interesting to me. There was a mystery element to the story. And I was very fascinated with everything that was happening. I liked seeing Meri at school. Her best friend was Rose. And I loved the two of them together.
The main male lead was 18 year old Atlas. He plays a big part in the story. But I was surprised that there was very little romance in this book.
There was a lot going on in the last half of the book. The last part of the story had a lot more action. But I liked it less. The book does not end in a cliffhanger. However, the story was definitely not finished. Overall, the book had an intriguing premise, which hooked me from the start. But unfortunately by the end I was less interested.
2.0 out of 5 starsHigh hopes but would not recommend (Spoilers in review)
Reviewed in the United States on February 3, 2020
I have read the Testing trilogy and Need so I thought this book would be a good one. In fact, I have such a big TBR pile and was so intrigued by this book's premise that I accidentally bought two copies of this book. And printed books don't come cheap in my city.
I'm angry I wasted money on this book.
I found the main character impulsive and thoughtless. SPOILER : She steals someone's special ID to access a restricted area and yet seems surprised that the other person - someone she knows - are interrogated for this security breach.
Though you have to wonder why in this tech world that relies on tablets, phones, screens, the Internet and abhors paper to be so lax they don't selectively give access on their key cards based on security.
Which is another aspect of this world-building that annoyed me. SPOILER alert again. It takes about 70 years for a LOT of words to be banned from usage and education? Words like diversity, revolution, corroborate? That is just one person's normal life span! This story is based in Chicago with the Internet already invented and they think 70 years is enough for this?
70 years for Chicago to become a peaceful city, even with people disappearing? And a weird law about •BULLETS• being registered to users supposedly leading to easier arrests after a gun-related crime which leads to gun crime being practically non-existent?
Another world building fact that surprised me - no more cameras! Which makes it conveniently easier for the protagonist to get away at some points. No facial recognition! (I get the ending and set up for book 2 better now.) I cannot fathom the logic of a repressive government letting go of its cameras.
I think the law about English becoming the one and official language makes sense. You see that happening nowadays in 2020. That world building made sense to me. But once a timeline of about 70+ years was introduced, my disbelief about shattered.
I had enjoyed the Testing trilogy because the natural disasters and wars were a catalyst for their societal change. In Verify's world, I don't see that foundation. Plot is predictable and character growth practically nil. I would say the protagonist's best friend, Rose, is the character I would like to have spent more time with.
I gave it 2 stars rating instead of 1 - real internal debate - because least I finished the book, hoping the story would just end and there would no sequel.
Would not recommend. I feel so bad for the 2 people who agreed to take my 2 copies, before I read the book. But maybe it's to their taste more than mine.
A girl cannot figure out what her mother's abstract paintings meant and has some nightmares..... (yawn..) and the book drags along this path for ever and ever, without any character development whatsoever. I got to page 128 managing to stay awake for two - three pages at a time, but I am calling it quits now.