This one took me a bit longer to review mostly because I was trying to find the right words to describe it. This proved to be a bit difficult at times.
Skinned By Robin Wasserman
Published: by Simon Pulse- 9/9/08
Series or Standalone? 1st of trilogy.
Summary (from GoodReads):
Lia Kahn was perfect: rich, beautiful, popular -- until the accident that nearly killed her. Now she has been downloaded into a new body that only looks human. Lia will never feel pain again, she will never age, and she can't ever truly die. But she is also rejected by her friends, betrayed by her boyfriend, and alienated from her old life.
Forced to the fringes of society, Lia joins others like her. But they are looked at as freaks. They are hated...and feared. They are everything but human, and according to most people, this is the ultimate crime -- for which they must pay the ultimate price.
I'm just going to start off by saying this is nothing like I have ever read. And let me tell you as a huge Sci-Fi nerd, especially through Middle School, I have read a lot of out there books. Nonetheless, this book is sure to "wow" you. I have seen people's reviews go both ways, but I think its brilliant.
Scott Westerfeld has called this series, "a gripping trilogy," and I am definitely in agreement with the Sci-Fi King. Actually, while I do prefer the Uglies series a bit more, I do believe the Skinned series is a strong contender for best Sci-Fi series. With the descriptions of Lia's "transformation" being so raw and heartbreakingly real, and the technology so evolved and well, awesome, its like a Sci-Fi dream come true. I am definitely going to read Wasserman other books, even the non Sci-Fi ones.
From page 1 to close, there was action and adventure and a tone of mystery that makes you want to keep on turning page after page. That hook gets you early on and does not let you go. Though it is likely you will have to take small breaks while reading this to be able to process everything.
Also, Wasserman uses some strong characterization that I really enjoyed. In this book there were characters I particurarly couldn't stand- but this just illustrated how good of a job Wasserman did in those situations.
Lia. At the start Lia was a little self-centered and conceited, which was a tad bit annoying, but in the grand scheme of things, this was essential to the plot and so I found this quite easy to overlook. As things move along after her "transformation" I really felt for Lia, and was able to really like her. Something about the outrageous, terrifying occurances she has to face really made me love her and root for her.
Riley. I looooove Riley. Seriously, where can I find my own Riley? I dont want to give anything away but then end of this book just about ripped my heart into two. (Its not what you think- I'll tell you that.)
Jude. I don't always want to, but I love Jude. Sometimes I may want to scream at him, but what can I say, the guy grew on me. I'm even rooting for him in the next book!
Now, the ending. "OH MY WORD." That is all I could think at the end if the book. Well that and, "I NEED the next one!" I am definitely excited to see how this story plays out. Its very thought provoking and will make you really think about the value of a human life and the result of technologically advancing ourselves.
All in all, I think this was a wonderful book. Like I've said before, this book makes you think, hard, so your guaranteed to remember this one. I would recommend this to all Sci-Fi fans boys and girls alike, but also those who want a good action-packed yet thought provoking read.
When Hooked. Immediately.
(If you're a "letter person" 96/100=A)
* I do believe that in future installments the romance will be more developed, but in this particular book there wasn't much romance. (Though I think the point was to introduce it more than anything.)
Want more Skinned? The second book Crashed is currently released in Hardcover, and the final book Wired is set to be released September 14th, 2010.
Want more Robin Wasserman? She has a Seven Deadly Sins series out which books include Lust, Envy, Pride, Wrath, Sloth, Gluttony, and Greed. Also, she is the author Hacking Harvard and a few others.
You can find her on:
her website (http://www.robinwasserman.com/),
her twitter (@robinwasserman),
her blog (http://www.robinwasserman.livejournal.com/),
or on GoodReads (though she isn't a member.)
Also, check out this AWESOME book trailer I found of Skinned: