Aberrant is a fast paced dystopia, it is like striking a match and starting an uncontained fire. It spreads quickly in all directions and you are never sure where it will go next. Overall I found Aberrant an entertaining read but have to say it’s not totally original.
The story starts on Olivia’s graduation day which in the society she lives in is also her marriage ceremony day. The government will match the 16 boys and 16 girls in her class with each other. Olivia is sick with nerves during the ceremony while awaiting to hear her fate and then over the moon with the announcement. Olivia is ecstatic to be matched with her best friend Joshua and is looking forward to their new home and life together. And maybe in the future they will be lucky enough to be chosen in the lottery to win a child who will be conceived in the lab.
But then things go abruptly and shockingly wrong. Olivia is arrested that very night and thrown in jail. She finds out a truth about her life, she is Aberrant. An oddity that was born and not created in the lab . Thanks to a little help, Joshua helps her escape from prison and the newly weds have to go on the run from the government. The action kicks off from here and it’s pretty much a fast race to the finish of the book.
Aberrant is told in first person perspective by Olivia. This helps to plunge us headfirst into the action and we are as confused and terrified at Olivia is by what happens her. We also get glimpses of what life is like in Cabal. All is relatively good when you toe the line but consequences when you don’t are swift and unmerciful.
I had an up and down relationship with Olivia, I liked her, then not so much and then I liked her again. I felt she was a bit thankless and moany with those who helped her. There is good character development though and as the book moves on we see she is honest, brave and most of all kind. Olivia has a tendency to help the underdog that finally won me over and is also very determined to do things on her terms and I like that she developed backbone as the book went on. Joshua is loyal and protective from the start of the book and it’s easy to like him.
The pace of the book worked well too, we moved quickly and the plot never had a chance to drag. My biggest criticism with this book is that it is a bit the same as so many other dystopias. A pinch of Divergent, a cup of The Hunger Games, a splash of Matched. Mix well and add some secret ingredients and you have Aberrant.
Some parts of the book are original and worked well. I would like to see the author have faith in her imagination and just let it run riot and be totally creative and unique in her next book. I think Ruth Silver has promise and I look forward to reading the follow up in time.
I would like to thank the author for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest unbiased review.
Bookish Chat : Why do you think dystopia books are so popular right now? What is it about them that appeal to you?