Saturday, September 20, 2014

Review: Blackbird by Anna Carey

Title: Blackbird
Author: Anna Carey
Genre: Young Adult, Mystery/Thriller
Release Date: 16 September, 2014
Source: HarperTeen via Edelweiss

This twisty, breathless cat-and-mouse thrill ride, told in the second person, follows a girl with amnesia in present-day Los Angeles who is being pursued by mysterious and terrifying assailants.

A girl wakes up on the train tracks, a subway car barreling down on her. With only minutes to react, she hunches down and the train speeds over her. She doesn’t remember her name, where she is, or how she got there. She has a tattoo on the inside of her right wrist of a blackbird inside a box, letters and numbers printed just below: FNV02198. There is only one thing she knows for sure: people are trying to kill her.

On the run for her life, she tries to untangle who she is and what happened to the girl she used to be. Nothing and no one are what they appear to be. But the truth is more disturbing than she ever imagined.

The Maze Runner series meets Code Name Verity, Blackbird is relentless and action-packed, filled with surprising twists.
Review by Nara

Blackbird is only the second book I've read which has a second person point of view, and I must say, I quite like it when the author uses it. In this book, the POV was slightly jarring to begin with, but once I got used to it, I feel like it did aid in connecting with the protagonist and really made it feel like you were "in the character's shoes". I've seen a heck of a lot of DNF reviews and I'd say at least 90% of them say that it's because of the second person point of view. Which is a bit disappointing, because I feel that the story is much more than just the point of view. It's fair enough though, I suppose. If the writing style doesn't suit your tastes, it doesn't suit your tastes.

The romance was seriously the most terrible aspect of the book. Firstly, it was a major case of instalove. Secondly, it was a major case of instalove (sorry, but that has to be the top two reasons, because ugh). Thirdly, there was no relationship development whatsoever (i.e. it was instalove). The main character meets the love interest, Ben, randomly on the street while he is selling drugs. Ben decides he wants to help the main character because at the time, she's bleeding from a cut on her arm (this is fair enough). Later on in the book, Ben decides to let the protagonist into his house despite seeing on the news that she's apparently a bank robber and an arsonist. Yeah, real.

Blackbird is a very fast-paced, short book, and there's certainly no shortage of action and tension. While, at times, the action seemed to get a little ridiculous (people would just come out of nowhere and start trying to kill the protagonist), I'd say that overall, it's acceptable if you ignore most of these ridiculous events (so not that realistic lol).

I must admit, though, I'm honestly confused as to why this series is a duology. If the second book is about the same length as this one, surely they could just be packed into one average sized book... I feel like the ending of this book came at a weird time as well. It wasn't really a cliffhanger, and it didn't particularly make me feel like I HAD to get my hands on the sequel. While I did enjoy this book overall, I'm not sure I really want to go on with this series, particularly because there's the hint of a love triangle to come.

Liked it

Overall: 5/10
Plot: 3/5
Romance: 1/5
Writing: 3/5
Characters: 3/5
Cover: 2/5