Eva and Addie started out the same way as everyone else—two souls woven together in one body, taking turns controlling their movements as they learned how to walk, how to sing, how to dance. But as they grew, so did the worried whispers. Why aren’t they settling? Why isn’t one of them fading? The doctors ran tests, the neighbors shied away, and their parents begged for more time. Finally Addie was pronounced healthy and Eva was declared gone. Except, she wasn’t…For the past three years, Eva has clung to the remnants of her life. Only Addie knows she’s still there, trapped inside their body. Then one day, they discover there may be a way for Eva to move again. The risks are unimaginable–hybrids are considered a threat to society, so if they are caught, Addie and Eva will be locked away with the others. And yet…for a chance to smile, to twirl, to speak, Eva will do anything.Hardcover, USA Edition, 356 pagesExpected publication: September 18th 2012 by HarperTeen.
Three and a half stars: a book with an intriguing and thrilling premise!
Addie and Eva are hiding a secret. Eva, the recessive soul, never went dormant and died. Instead she is still present, sharing the same body with Addie, just as they have done since the day they were born. Unfortunately in their society, two souls possessing the same body past adolescence are known as hybrids and considered to be extremely dangerous. America's history is filled with bloody battles and hybrid uprisings. Now to protect the population, the country has sanctioned itself from the rest of the world, and rounds up all the hybrids. Thus, Addie and Eva quietly cohabit their body. Addie always in control and Eva nothing more than a voice in Addie's head. They keep their secret and not even their parents know that Eva still exists. Everything changes when Addie makes friends with Haddie. It turns out Eva and Addie aren't the only ones hiding their recessive soul. Eva begins to try to learn to once again control the body. Soon their experiment turns dangerous and Addie and Eva are in a fight to maintain their dual souls. Can Addie and Eva continue to exist in the same body?
What I Liked:
- I found the concept of two unique souls inhabiting the same body to be very intriguing. Imagine a pair of souls born hand in hand, coexisting in one form until the time one soul becomes dominant and takes control over the body. Leaving the other soul to slowly drift and eventually sleep and die. Every child is born with this duality. A thought provoking premise indeed!
- I enjoyed getting to know the two different souls, Eva and Addie and seeing how they coexisted together. You would think having two independent bodies in the same space that there would be constant strife, but the girls are dependent upon each other and have found that cannot live without the other. Plus, each girl had her talents, likes and dislikes, strengths and weaknesses. Truly, it is like two different people joined through a common bond: the same body.
- I liked the atmospheric tension that flickers in the beginning and then steadily builds throughout the book, keeping the reader in a constant state of agitation throughout.
- I appreciated that one of the characters who appears to be working for the bad guys surprised me with a change of heart.
- I liked that this book did not have a love triangle. In fact there is really not a romance at all, only the tiniest spark of an attraction. I will be interested to see how and if a romance builds in the sequel.
- I loved that this book had a nice resolution. No cliffhangers, but a neat ending that leaves the reader satisfied but still plenty of room to build for the next book. Lately, it seems that I am continually disappointed in the endings. This was not the case with this book.
And The Not So Much:
- Once again I must complain about lack of details and world building. This book thrusts the reader into this society where hybrids are considered dangerous and exterminated. I was so eager to learn about these hybrids. The entire idea of two souls in one body was novel and left me hungry for information. Unfortunately, I disappointed. There is so little discussion on the how and why and even less on how the souls work and function together in the early years, then how everything is handled once the second soul is lost. Parents seem to love each soul as a unique child, so I was curious about how they coped with the death of the second soul. This book has endless possibilities with this concept and I truly hope that it will be expanded upon and explored in the second book. The ending left me extremely hopeful that this would be the case.
- I was disappointed that this book spends a good portion of the time confined to a hospital setting. Again, I wanted more creativity and this confinement made the story less original.
- I am dying to know how a romantic relationship can play out when there are two unique souls inhabiting the same body. How does one have a relationship when there is always another being there, who most likely does not share the same attraction. So intriguing but no answers!
What's Left of Me is an exciting and thought provoking book that set my imagination on fire. This book steps outside the boundaries and is unique. I loved that it refrained from a romance, love triangles and cliffhangers. This solid first book left me hungry for the sequel. I can't wait to see where the story goes from here. I am hoping to see a hybrid society and find the answers to many of my questions.
“I didn’t want to go. I wanted twenty thousand more sunrises, three thousand more hot summer days at the pool. I wanted to know what it was like to have a first kiss.”
“The stairs were mountains. Our heart dragged down our feet.”
“The television stayed black and cold-faced like an enemy.”
“The wall between us was crumbling down, down down. Her emotions washed over me, a sea of worry and fear and guilt.”
“A whole tableful of children, pretending we knew nothing, pretending we trusted our guardians. Pretending we weren’t afraid.”
“The words brushed against me like tattered butterfly wings.”
“We’d been born with our souls’ fingers interlocked. What if we’d never let go?”
“Memories of today mixed with those of yesterday an the days before, slippery silver fish in a murky pond.”
“Because our government lied. Because our president lied. Because our teachers lied. Or didn’t even know the truth of what they doled out in class, of what marched across their blackboards, lay bound in their textbooks.”
“I felt lighter than I’d ever felt before. Full of sunlight and air and clouds.”
I received an ARC copy of this book courtesy of ATWT. All opinions expressed are my own and I was not compensated for this review.